I have been working on a very exciting collaborative webtext with a group of writers from Salem State (more on this later) and, as we worked out some of the design choices for that webtext, the ever-relevant and web-savvy Kate Artz brought up the question of spacing. She asked whether we would all be double or single-spacing between sentences. I had never really considered this question, being a die-hard, lifelong double-spacer myself.
Turns out that double spacing in between sentences is officially wrong! The double space is in fact an outdated holdover from the typewriter days in which all spaces were uniform. Currently, both the Modern Language Association Style Manual and the Chicago Manual of Style clearly dictate that the informed writer should place one, lone space after each period and before starting the following sentence. For a pretty great history and breakdown of the one v. two-space debate, tech writer and journalist Farhad Manjoo has a fantastically informative and funny post. Time spent reading that post is time well spent; trust me on this one.
Oddly enough, with myself as a prime example, teachers of all grade levels can still be seen instructing on and enforcing the erroneous two-space convention. For those of you who are in my boat and entirely missed the memo on this one, it looks like we'll have to adjust our ways.
On the topic of ways-adjusting, I am not planning on combing back through all this blog's archives and ripping out the offending, extra spaces; however, I will clean up my About and Get in Touch pages. I will also use my new knowledge from here on out to publish single-spaced blog posts. So have pity on my typographical ignorance in posts dated prior to this one.
You have my sincerest apologies, Internet, Modernity, and Professionalism. I will now go forth and try to break this lifelong habit of mine.