Standards for Grammar / Spelling, What a Good Writer Looks out for

david stone

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[*]Community created terms such as "speed tier" are not capitalized, but Nintendo created terms such as "Base Power" are capitalized as they would be in-game. "speed tie" is another example of a community created term.
It should be "Speed tie", "Speed tier", and the like. Unless we're directly quoting an entire article, everything is a community created term. We say "Rhyperior's Substitute" and not "rhyperior's substitute", even though no where does Nintendo use that term. Even "Speed stat" is, to my knowledge, a community created term. We're referring to the stat, which is Speed, and as such, it should be capitalized. I'd like to see a single case where "Speed" Isn't used as part of a larger phrase, and in almost all of those cases, Speed is (and should be) capitalized.

[*]For unbracketed asides, use the em dash and no spaces (—). (Mareepthat is to say, the entire evolution familyis extremely cute.)
I haven't seen any compelling reason to not include a space around the em dash. However, I can see a downside. Not having a space makes it look more like a hyphen, as though you are trying to connect each part of the phrase to the word on either end – in fact, your intent is exactly the opposite! The purpose of the em dash is to emphasize a distinction. Using punctuation in a way that looks more connective than distinguishing goes against that. Both ways are attested to, so I'm not propose some wacky punctuation no one will understand.

Even better is a spaced en dash. Em dashes are so big, and then you add spaces around that, and that makes the difference between the phrases a little too big. Spaced en dash is used even more commonly (from what I've read) than a spaced em dash, as well. However, I'm fine with a spaced em or en dash.




I would like to propose the following changes to how we address generations:

We currently have:

RB / RBY
GS / GSC
RS / ADV / RSE / RSFRLGE
DP / DPP / DPPt / DPPHGSS / DPPtHGSS

It's fine for the first three, because we can find a way to standardize it to 3-letter abbreviations for everything. However, there is no easy way to do that in the current generation (and no guarantee that we will be able to in the future). When we talk of the current generation, the shortest catch-all is DPPHGSS, as DPP could mean just Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, and DP could be Diamond and Pearl. As you can tell from the list, the quantity of abbreviations seems to grow with more generations (as they make more games, many of which require multiple letters). As such, I propose the following extensible, easy method (which I have started using myself) to refer to every game in a particular generation.

Gen 1, Gen 2, Gen 3, Gen 4, etc.

Gen 4, for instance, would be taken to mean "the set of everything in the current generation that is part of 'standard' play". That would mean everything in Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, Heart Gold, Soul Silver, whatever events there are (if we decide to continue allowing event Pokemon), whatever "Stadium" games they make, etc. It's basically a catch-all for saying what we actually mean.
 

Xia

On porpoise
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The only (small) problem I could see with that suggestion is the need to differentiate between sub generations withing a single generation. While it doesn't really affect the rest of the generations, generation 4 has gone through major renovations. Keeping small abbreviations, such as DP for the first generation 4 metagame and DPP to refer to the Platinum era, seem necessary when speaking of how the generation was before the current generation 4. Either that, or we add dashes, such as generation 4-1 to refer to DPP, which refers to generation 4 last year. Either way, something needs to be added or kept to help with this differentiation.
 
The only (small) problem I could see with that suggestion is the need to differentiate between sub generations withing a single generation. While it doesn't really affect the rest of the generations, generation 4 has gone through major renovations. Keeping small abbreviations, such as DP for the first generation 4 metagame and DPP to refer to the Platinum era, seem necessary when speaking of how the generation was before the current generation 4. Either that, or we add dashes, such as generation 4-1 to refer to DPP, which refers to generation 4 last year. Either way, something needs to be added or kept to help with this differentiation.
That last bit would just be making it more complicated. The best way to handle it, IMO, would be to just simply say "in DP" or "in Platinum" (after all, why's it necessary to repeat the DP when referring to Platinum? With or without them mentioned, you get that it's Platinum that's being referred to really, so why not just simplify and cut out the bulk?) or "in HGSS" (same deal) if you want to refer to a particular metagame, but when referring to the fourth generation as a whole, I agree with Obi that simply calling it something like "Gen 4" would be best, for simplicity sake. Trying to continue using one general, overarching format for both cases would just wind up getting confusing (does DP mean the 4th gen in general? Or just DP?)/messy (DPPtHGSS), so Obi's proposed changes make more sense to me, over all.
 
obi said:
It should be "Speed tie", "Speed tier", and the like. Unless we're directly quoting an entire article, everything is a community created term. We say "Rhyperior's Substitute" and not "rhyperior's substitute", even though no where does Nintendo use that term. Even "Speed stat" is, to my knowledge, a community created term. We're referring to the stat, which is Speed, and as such, it should be capitalized. I'd like to see a single case where "Speed" Isn't used as part of a larger phrase, and in almost all of those cases, Speed is (and should be) capitalized.
arguably, the difference is that when you are referring to Speed EVs you are directly referring to the stat itself. but when you say a Pokemon has high speed, it's a reference to the stat but isn't directly tied to it i.e. the phrase has meaning external to its official Pokemon definition. I think the same case applies for "speed tie" and "speed tier" -- they are both phrases that refer to the Speed stat, but aren't intrinsically tied to it. Rhyperior and Substitute are both Pokemon terms that have no external meaning, so we capitalize them.
 
It should be "Speed tie", "Speed tier", and the like. Unless we're directly quoting an entire article, everything is a community created term. We say "Rhyperior's Substitute" and not "rhyperior's substitute", even though no where does Nintendo use that term. Even "Speed stat" is, to my knowledge, a community created term. We're referring to the stat, which is Speed, and as such, it should be capitalized. I'd like to see a single case where "Speed" Isn't used as part of a larger phrase, and in almost all of those cases, Speed is (and should be) capitalized.
I disagree, "speed tie" should not be capitalized.

Speed:
1. rapidity in moving, going, traveling, proceeding, or performing; swiftness; celerity: the speed of light; the speed of sound.
2. relative rapidity in moving, going, etc.; rate of motion or progress: full speed ahead.
The issue here is that even if "Speed" was not a Nintendo created term, the word would still be both relevant and appropriate in many of the cases where it is currently used, such as "speed tie". Competitors in a race sometimes encounter speed ties, as do those involved in many other forms of competition. When one uses the phrase "speed tie" one is arguably referring to a tie in the 'rapidity in moving' of two or more Pokemon, and thus it is perfectly appropriate - and grammatically correct - to leave such a reference fully uncapitalized.

"Speed tier" COULD be capitalized, because it could be referencing a tier comprised based on the Speed stats of the given Pokemon. However, one could also argue that the tier is actually a chart organizing the 'relative rapidity in moving' of each of the tiered Pokemon, in the latter's case, the phrase "speed tier" would also have to be uncapitalized. Obviously I have no way of knowing what the original intended meaning for "speed tier" was, but neither do you (I assume), and as such, it should come down to which is preferred by the community.

I haven't seen any compelling reason to not include a space around the em dash. However, I can see a downside. Not having a space makes it look more like a hyphen, as though you are trying to connect each part of the phrase to the word on either end – in fact, your intent is exactly the opposite! The purpose of the em dash is to emphasize a distinction. Using punctuation in a way that looks more connective than distinguishing goes against that. Both ways are attested to, so I'm not propose some wacky punctuation no one will understand.

Even better is a spaced en dash. Em dashes are so big, and then you add spaces around that, and that makes the difference between the phrases a little too big. Spaced en dash is used even more commonly (from what I've read) than a spaced em dash, as well. However, I'm fine with a spaced em or en dash.
I am not really familiar with the distinction between an em dash and an en dash, because I am on a laptop (no ALT keys) and all I have is a standard hyphen ( - ). However I completely agree with the above two paragraphs. I wasn't too happy about the current rule, enforcing hyphens without a space. As you state yourself, the appeared intent of such a use directly conflicts with what you are actually intending, and it also looks quite messy from the reader's perspective.


I would like to propose the following changes to how we address generations:

We currently have:

RB / RBY
GS / GSC
RS / ADV / RSE / RSFRLGE
DP / DPP / DPPt / DPPHGSS / DPPtHGSS

It's fine for the first three, because we can find a way to standardize it to 3-letter abbreviations for everything. However, there is no easy way to do that in the current generation (and no guarantee that we will be able to in the future). When we talk of the current generation, the shortest catch-all is DPPHGSS, as DPP could mean just Diamond, Pearl, and Platinum, and DP could be Diamond and Pearl. As you can tell from the list, the quantity of abbreviations seems to grow with more generations (as they make more games, many of which require multiple letters). As such, I propose the following extensible, easy method (which I have started using myself) to refer to every game in a particular generation.

Gen 1, Gen 2, Gen 3, Gen 4, etc.

Gen 4, for instance, would be taken to mean "the set of everything in the current generation that is part of 'standard' play". That would mean everything in Diamond, Pearl, Platinum, Heart Gold, Soul Silver, whatever events there are (if we decide to continue allowing event Pokemon), whatever "Stadium" games they make, etc. It's basically a catch-all for saying what we actually mean.
I also agree with this. I myself have considered suggesting "DS1" as the 4th gen equivalent to "ADV", and "DS2" as the equivalent for the upcoming generation... but regardless your proposal looks cleaner, is obviously more consistent, and is guaranteed to work in the future, no matter how many generations we end up having.
 

david stone

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If you are referring to the specific changes in Platinum, then by all means, say Platinum or Pt or DPP or any of those things. I'm merely proposing a catch-all term to talk about the generation in general.

Unfortunately, it's probably too late to change the site itself to match this. http://smogon.com/4/pokemon/swampert for instance.
 

Jumpman16

np: Michael Jackson - "Mon in the Mirror" (DW mix)
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I haven't seen any compelling reason to not include a space around the em dash. However, I can see a downside. Not having a space makes it look more like a hyphen, as though you are trying to connect each part of the phrase to the word on either end – in fact, your intent is exactly the opposite! The purpose of the em dash is to emphasize a distinction. Using punctuation in a way that looks more connective than distinguishing goes against that. Both ways are attested to, so I'm not propose some wacky punctuation no one will understand.

Even better is a spaced en dash. Em dashes are so big, and then you add spaces around that, and that makes the difference between the phrases a little too big. Spaced en dash is used even more commonly (from what I've read) than a spaced em dash, as well. However, I'm fine with a spaced em or en dash.
There's a bunch of things I could cite or quote but this is the most compelling with regard to authority and brevity:

http://www.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/hyphens.html

When you are typing for photocopying or direct printing, it is a good idea to learn how to type a true dash instead of the double hyphen (computers differ). In old-fashioned styles, dashes (but never hyphens) are surrounded by spaces — like this. With modern computer output which emulates professional printing, this makes little sense. Skip the spaces unless your editor or teacher insists on them.

There are actually two kinds of dashes. The most common is the “em-dash” (theoretically the width of a letter “M”—but this is often not the case). To connect numbers, it is traditional to use an “en-dash” which is somewhat shorter, but not as short as a hyphen: “cocktails 5–7 pm.”
It is extremely rare to find an instance where a given usage Paul Brians says is correct is disagreed with by a majority of other experts/authorities, and impossible to find a usage on which he has not done exhaustive research. En dashes should not be used in the context you gave, and em dashes are no longer popularly surrounded by spaces.
 

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