The Case for Lowercase

I love this passage from the University of Colorado style guide

In general, this guide recommends a lowercase style, for several reasons:

  • When too many words are capitalized, they lose their importance and no longer attract attention.
  • Standard style guides, including the Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law and The Chicago Manual of Style, require lowercase letters in running text for things like job descriptions and unofficial department names.
  • Copy is more easily read when it isn’t peppered with initial caps or all caps.
  • Using lowercase letters in no way diminishes the stature or credibility of an individual’s position or a department’s reputation. After all, even the title “president of the United States” is lowercased in running text when it doesn’t immediately precede the president’s name.
  • When writing promotional or marketing materials (such as brochures or print ads), emphasis can be achieved more effectively by the skillful use of white space, typeface, and typestyle than by excessive use of initial caps or all caps.
  • Keeping everything except full, official names lowercase also simplifies decisions about when to capitalize shortened forms of official names.

I send my thanks to the wise writers of this guide and I pledge to uphold these principles.


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