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|A Word about Pre-Formatting|
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0461 Thursday, 15 November 2012
Date: Thursday, November 15, 2012
Subject: A Word about Pre-Formatting
Dear SHAKSPER Subscribers,
Thanks to all the contributors in the “Play Length” thread; it is proving, except for my smart aleck remarks, to be an interesting discussion. (NB: I really cannot stand for a long time, and I was not trying to impose my view of the present with that of Elizabethans and Jacobeans: I was trying to be funny.)
I would like to pause for a note about pre-formatting on the new platform I am using for SHAKSPER and for mounting and preparing postings for digests.
Under the old system (1990 to April-May 2011), I could only use the basic ASCII character set. Now, using Joomla, I can provide posting with most symbols (like £), characters [in English or in other languages if appropriate, including italic, bold, underlining], and other formatting.
Part of my job in preparing postings under LISTSERV© (old system) was to make sure that I was distributing posts using only the basic ASCII characters. With Joomla (new system), I find myself including italics, bolding, and other formatting features. However, I do try to preserve formatting, as well as spelling (such as formating, colour, favour, labour, neighbor, and generalise) and punctuation (Dr) from those using British conventions, and I DO use the “Oxford/Cambridge” comma in a series. (I learned most of what I know about formatting, punctuation, and usage from “Strunk and White” and the EDITOR program.)
If your e-mail client can provide italics, bolding, underling please do so and save me some time. If you e-mail client does not allow formatting options, there are several other pre-formatting tasks you can do to ease my load.
If you want to use italics, for example, you can use the underscoring convention: _italic_ . If you wish to have bold, you can do this: *bold* . I can easily convert these.
Other formatting options I employ are “smart quotation marks” rather then "straight quotation marks"; superscripts (1st) rather than ordinals (1st); fraction characters (½) rather than straight factions (1/2); symbol characters (—) rather than symbols (--); and I try to provide ‘live’ hyperlinks http://shaksper.net rather than shaksper.net. I keep paragraphs single-spaced and flush with the left margin with a space between paragraphs rather than using indentation. I also word-wrap paragraphs rather than have hard returns at the end of each line.
Finally, from the Netiquette page:
These little steps on your part will enable me to provide professionally looking digests for you and for the web site, which currently gets 150 to 300 visits a day, usually from new visitors to the site.
One other thing I would like to remind you of is that I can now also, on occasion, include attachments for distribution. This ability is particularly useful when you are sending in an announcement with a flyer. Announcements are made available on the web site under the ANNOUNCEMENTS tab as well as under the CURRENT POSTINGS tab.
I deeply appreciate the support I receive from subscribers and wish everyone well during this New Year’s celebration in many parts of the world.