I would like to collect some opinions on a controversy that has arisen so gradually in the past 10 or so years that hardly anyone seems to be aware of it.  It recently came to my attention that “young” folks these days do not put two spaces after a period.  To clarify, by ‘young’, I mean anyone who never used a typewriter (because no-one was using typewriters in their lifetime).  At first, I would correct these young-uns and I was surprised that they were completely clueless as to why there might be two spaces after a period. I asked some where they learned to type and many said either I taught myself or in a computing class.  Eventually, I decided to google “2 spaces after a period” in the hopes of finding a “Ms. Grammar website” or some such thing to confirm my ‘opinion’ on the matter.  I am sad to report that I could find nothing to support my opinion.  Now of course, this probably just means that Ms. Grammar is sitting at home typing on her typewriter and the letters that she is sending to public schools and newspapers regarding the matter are not being read by anyone or posted on the internet.  But I have to say the posts that I did find were convincing regarding the lack of a need for two spaces.  I tried briefly to change but it is too ingrained for me and besides there are quite a few of us dinosaurs still out there (I believe our transcriptionists at the University are all or mostly dinosaurs) and I am always happy when I find  a young-un (ie 30-something) who is a dinosaur. The biggest downside to the controversy is that if you co-write something with a young-un the end result may be a mismatch.

Is it too late to make a case for 2 spaces after a period?!

Opinions appreciated.


A punctuation dinosaur