Saturday, January 3, 2015

Does the Space Make a Difference?

I have always believed that punctuation makes a difference and has significance. But a difference I hadn’t thought about until fairly recently was whether to leave one or two spaces after a period. I grew up learning, in my high school typing class and elsewhere, to leave two spaces, and I never questioned that. It became absolutely automatic for me. But more and more I have realized that now the standard is one space. The point that jolted me was in a recent article about job applications that stated that for older applicants, leaving two spaces after periods can be a signal of their age, and by proxy, a sort of sign of being outdated or behind the times. I am fortunate not to have to apply for jobs, but I still don’t want to be thought of as behind the times! So I have been trying to remember this, and now I often go back through something I have written to delete one of the two spaces. I actually had to do it for this very blogpost. Such a small matter to be fraught with such possible significance!
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