Writing for Business - A Whatis.com Blog

Oct 3 2012   1:22PM GMT

Em dashes and spaces: AP vs. Chicago



Posted by: Ivy Wigmore
Tags:
AP style
AP vs. Chicago style
Chicago style
punctuation

I’m taking another run at yesterday’s Q&A. I was apparently wrong about being wrong. I’d been using em dashes correctly all along, if only by accident, since we loosely follow AP style on WhatIs.com. All right … here it goes again. (Pls. note correct AP-style ellipsis. YES — I learned something else already today!)

Which is correct?
1. Vendors—including Apple, Google and Microsoft—all have their own versions of auto-correct programs and, as a result, their own particular auto-correct fails.

2. Vendors — including Apple, Google and Microsoft — usually have their own versions of auto-correct programs and, as a result, their own particular auto-correct fails.


Answer: It depends on your style.

Explanation:
AP style is to add spaces around the em dash; Chicago style is without spaces. What happened yesterday? I found a source that seemed authoritative and went with it. But that source was following the Chicago Manual of Style. We’re (mostly) Team AP.

See AP vs. Chicago on em dashes and ellipses. Now there’s a blog for a fake grammarian to bookmark.

Follow me on Twitter @tao_of_grammar

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