Wednesday, September 3, 2008

never use â?oitâ?Tsâ? in legal writing

My students take a diagnostic test during Orientation that helps us identify their weaknesses in grammar and punctuation. Today I used the e-mail option of a popular course utility (which shall remain nameless) to send them my comments on the class's overall performance. Imagine my surprise when the e-mail authoring software turned apostrophes and quotation marks in my original sentences into this gibberish:

Finally, if you were one of the students who confused â?oitsâ? and â?oitâ?Ts,â? I urge you to make a special effort this year to tackle that problem. When you wish to refer to something that â?obelongs to it,â? use â?oits.â? It may help for you to resolve to never use the word â?oitâ?Tsâ? (the contraction for â?oit isâ?) in your legal writing. Formal legal writing does not use contractions, so guess what? If you cannot substitute â?oit isâ? for the â?oitâ?Tsâ? you wrote in your memo, you used the wrong word.

So even though one shouldn't write â?oitâ?Tsâ?, it is perfectly okay to mutter it under your breath!

(Did you guess that my advice dealt with "it's" and "its"?)

(cmb)

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/legalwriting/2008/09/never-use-oitts.html

| Permalink

TrackBack URL for this entry:

http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d8341bfae553ef00e554fc70bd8834

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference never use â?oitâ?Tsâ? in legal writing:

Comments

Post a comment