Apostrophe Protection Society

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The Apostrophe Protection Society is a UK society that has "the specific aim of preserving the correct use of this currently much abused punctuation mark".[1] It was founded in 2001 by John Richards, a retired sub-editor, in response to his observations of widespread incorrect use of the apostrophe.

The website includes many examples of apostrophe abuse, but is intended to help correct, rather than chide, offenders. Richards has a standard, polite letter that explains the basic rules for apostrophe use, which he sends to supporters to forward on to offending businesses and other organisations.[2]

In 2001, Richards won an Ig Nobel Prize for "his efforts to protect, promote, and defend the differences between plural and possessive".[3]

The rules are summarised here.


  1. ^ The Apostrophe Protection Society
  2. ^ Kovacs, Zoltan (16 October 2010), "English speakers split over a squiggle", The West Australian: 48 
  3. ^ "Winners of the Ig Nobel Prize". Improbable Research. Retrieved 2010-10-17.