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Re: where are the proofers???

At 01:08 AM 3/29/98 -0500, you wrote:
>> Actually, "its" is the same as other pronoun possessives.  There is no
>> apostrophe in "his" or "hers" or "theirs" or "yours."  Nouns form the
>> possessive by adding 's.  Pronouns don't. 
>Come to think of it, the rule is the same with "who's" and "whose." 
The only correct use of "who's" that I can think of is as a contraction for
"who is"--just as "it's" is a contraction for "it is". To give this thread a
little bit of a radio flavor, let me paraphrase the late Bill Marlowe and
ask, "is there another?" (Reminds me of a quote from William Safire during
the Persian Gulf War: "If there's a Saddam who's sane, it's not Saddam

Actually, there are exceptions to all of the rules discussed so far in this
thread. Here's an example: My magazine has a lot of very inflexible rules
and "no 'apostophe s' in plurals" is one of them. But when we publish lists
of do's and don'ts, we break the rule--on purpose. Using "dos" as a plural
of "do" just doesn't cut it. People--particularly our computer-literate
readers--would be likely to read "dos" incorrectly as "DOS". And even those
who aren't computer literate (supposedly, none of our readers) would
probably find "dos" to be a stopper--a word that would interrupt the smooth
flow of reading and would interfere with comprehension. In 10-1/2 years,
I've never heard an objection to "do's", even from the nontechnical editors
who edit my copy. And these are people whose credo seems to be "you must
follow the rules inflexibly and without thinking."

- -------------------------------
Dan Strassberg (Note: Address is CASE SENSITIVE!)
ALL _LOWER_ CASE!!!--> dan.strassberg@worldnet.att.net
(617) 558-4205; Fax (617) 928-4205