This is a forum to discuss the gray areas of the English language for which you would not find answers easily in dictionaries or other reference books.
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Latest Posts : Punctuation and Mechanics
On the Web, the majority seems to think we need a question mark in the following context:
Q: “What is the meaning of life?”
A: “Who knows?”
I disagree. I consider “who knows” as a phrase or an expression, not a question; not even a rhetorical question. Adding a question mark sort of ruins the response especially in writing because it sets up an expectation (or subtle tension) of further response. A period, I feel, is the right choice because it’s a complete answer. In speech, we would not pronunce “Who knows” as if we are really asking a question; that is, our tone is missing the question mark. What do you think?
We’re arguing in the office. Help us get this straight once and for all.
You could boil the question down to this: how would you write this title?
“email Is Destroying Our Children”
email or e-mail?
Do you capitalize the E if it’s at the beginning of a sentence or part of a title?
Do you capitalize the M if it’s at the beginning of a sentence or part of a title? If so, do you only do this when it’s hyphenated?
While on vacation during the first week of summer, I came across an advertisement for the H1N1 Vaccine on the back of a coach bus. It stated “Get your ‘free’ H1N1 vaccine today!”
This begs the question, does putting quotation marks around “Free” (but not as a quotation, of course) serve any function or purpose? Such as:
All these hot dogs are “free”.
i wonder why english has capital letters? as a non native english speaker, i could not understand the logic behind it. it also increases key strokes on typewriters, computers, and makes it difficult for non natives. i am sure that if puritans of english would be mild, it could be reduced.
similarly i find the use of THE very problematic. why it cant be reduced to a minimum?
I am in media relations and sent a story pitch to an editor telling him I could send him more information if he was interested and added a question mark to ensure some kind of response, e.g.,
I can send you more information if you are interested?
Is this grammatically incorrect? I just like doing this because it’s not as forceful as Are you interested?