Wikipedia talk:Manual of Style/Capital letters

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject Manual of Style
WikiProject icon This page falls within the scope of WikiProject Manual of Style, a drive to identify and address contradictions and redundancies, improve language, and coordinate the pages that form the MoS guidelines.

Reduce source titles to SC or to TC?[edit]

The present so-called guidance at MOS:SMALLCAPS on reducing case for titles when citing (e.g. news, magazine, or journal) articles is pointlessly ambivalent. This leads to a widespread nonsensical waste of effort. A MOS should at least recommend a style, even if it does not mandate it. So which style is it to be? Sentence case, or Title Case? LeadSongDog come howl! 19:34, 2 August 2016 (UTC)

There's considerable variation on this among style guides. "The great thing about standards is that there are so many to choose from." Some examples:

"Capitalize only the first word of a title, proper nouns, proper adjectives, acronyms, and initialisms" (from Citing Medicine, second edition)

  • CMS/Turabian: "The full article title, which is followed by a period, should be placed within quotation marks. Place the period within the quotation marks. Although Chicago traditionally uses the headline style of capitalizing the first letter of each word in the title, sentence style is also acceptable. Be consistent in your bibliography in using either style."
  • APA: example shows sentencecase, even though taken from NYT.
  • APA: examples here show sentencecase
  • MLA: example here can't be distinguished between sentencecase and titlecase, capitalizing proper nouns.
  • MLA: examples here show clear titlecase
  • MLA: examples here mix use of sentencecase and titlecase
  • Cambridge: examples for newspaper articles, journal articles, thesis titles are all sentencecase
  • Oxford: uses sentencecase for headlines, journal articles, chapter titles and lecture titles, as well as generally calling for minimized use of capitals (as does WP:CAPS)
  • Harvard: examples

No doubt this could go on all day, but we really ought to make a choice. LeadSongDog come howl! 19:29, 25 August 2016 (UTC)

Why shouldn't the band/album/song rule book be here at the main document too?[edit]

Piriczki, I read at one person's talk page that having the rule book about band names, music albums, and songs not in the same space as these sections about capitalization here at this main document is confusing. Why do you think it shouldn't be here? Anyone else, why do you think or not think we shouldn't merge them? Nancy Pantzy (talk) 07:42, 15 September 2016 (UTC)

"Incipit" rule in MOS:CT[edit]

See current discussion at Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (music)#Capitalisation of songs, arias, etc. Please comment there not here. --Francis Schonken (talk) 14:30, 23 September 2016 (UTC)

The "incipit rule"[edit]

Under "Composition titles" we have:

If a work is known by its first line of text and lacks a separate title, then the first line, rendered in sentence case, should be used as its title.

I suggest rewording this as:

If a work is known primarily by its first line of text (incipit), then this should be used as the article title, rendered in sentence case.

I am only trying to express more clearly what I am sure was the original intention. The current version is open to a Legal Argument that in a marginal case (such as at Flow my tears), the mere existence of a variant form of a composition which does have a title, changes the correct capitalisation of the version named by the incipit. I do not believe a discussion among people of reason could come to this conclusion; the existing version of the rule is confusing the selection of the title and its capitalisation. I almost just boldly changed the wording, but I am open to suggestions of even more clarity. Imaginatorium (talk) 05:06, 24 September 2016 (UTC)

As said above, please keep this discussion in one place, which is Wikipedia talk:Naming conventions (music)#Capitalisation of songs, arias, etc. --Francis Schonken (talk) 14:53, 24 September 2016 (UTC)

Capitalization of "Canton", "Governate" (and .. Civil War)[edit]

E.g. Al-Hasakah Governate, Afrin Canton (as opposed to e.g. Shahba region). On their own, canton or governate (like government, even US government) should be lower case or when plural ("Rojava cantons").

Democratic Confederalism is also in question.

[I may have lower cased Syrian Civil War in error at Rojava. Does it matter if a war is ongoing? As opposed to e.g. "Rojava conflict" lower case.. But "Rojava Revolution" upper..] comp.arch (talk) 10:27, 29 September 2016 (UTC)

Yes, generally minimise capitalisation. Tony (talk) 11:43, 29 September 2016 (UTC)

Job / politician titles[edit]

Is the following capitalization consistent with the Manual of Style?

I'm thinking the titles following the names should not be capitalized - lecturer, fellow, dean, vice chancellor. Not sure whether Comparative Theology and Ethics, Postgraduate Studies should be capitalized.

Also have a question about this: "Margaret Thatcher, a former prime minister of the United Kingdom" is correct. Same for "Margaret Thatcher was prime minister during the 1980s". Thanks. (talk) 07:28, 2 October 2016 (UTC)

Can I add to the above, a request for advice about the former official title Resident? I think it has to be capitalized because uncapitalized means something different. For example, Joe Bloggs was a British Resident in Canton means that he was an official with title Resident, but Joe Bloggs was a British resident in Canton means simply that he was a British person who lived in Canton. Is capitalization of Resident consistent with MOS:JOBTITLES? If not, how should the example be expressed? — Stanning (talk) 09:56, 4 October 2016 (UTC)