[Air-L] copyediting question: capitalize www?

Jonathan Sterne, Dr. jonathan.sterne at mcgill.ca
Tue Nov 1 02:51:07 PDT 2011

Hi Everyone,

I'm starting to get lots of replies, which I appreciate, and I'm happy to hear more people weigh in, but I'll take the opportunity to explain my thinking on "internet."  Early in their histories, most media are capitalized by journalists (eg., "Telegraph" or "Phonograph") but this usage generally falls away after some time.  I am one of those people who believe that the internet is best thought of as one more of a series of communication technologies that are important in our lives (indeed one of the arguments of the book I'm copyediting effectively de-exceptionalizes the internet).

Since I don't capitalize "phonograph" or "television" or "satellite", it seems strange to capitalize "internet" which is not really a new medium anymore.

OTOH, if there is another Really Good Reason to capitalize "internet," I would love to hear it.


On 2011-11-01, at 5:46 AM, Sue Malta wrote:

As part of the team that publishes the "International Journal of Emerging Techologies and Society" (iJETS), I would ALWAYS opt for a capital for Internet and the World Wide Web....


Sue Malta

Sue Malta
Editor / Managing Editor
International Journal of Emerging Technologies and Society (iJETS)
Swinburne University of Technology
John Street, Hawthorn, VIC 3122
Email: ijets at swin.edu.au<mailto:ijets at swin.edu.au>
Or: smalta at groupwise.swin.edu.au<mailto:smalta at groupwise.swin.edu.au>

>>> "Jonathan Sterne, Dr." <jonathan.sterne at mcgill.ca<mailto:jonathan.sterne at mcgill.ca>> 01/11/11 8:32 PM >>>
Hi Everyone,

Please excuse any repetition if this has been answered recently. I know that people are coming around to not capitalizing the word "internet" (this is my preference too). But what about "world wide web"?

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