Question mark punctuation.

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Enmos, Jun 1, 2008.

  1. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    One good reason not to put in a space is that if you're using a word processor you risk having your question mark bumped to the next line, dangling.
     
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  3. BenTheMan Dr. of Physics, Prof. of Love Valued Senior Member

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    I have a more relevant question...

    Who the hell decided that ? should denote a question?
     
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  5. EmmZ It's an animal thing Registered Senior Member

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    The Yogic Punctuation Committee. After much deliberation it was decided that questions asked in English should be marked at the end with the symbol we know as the question mark. Those questions asked in Spanish should be marked with one at the beginning with an upside down one also. So spake the Committee, so it was done.
     
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    The question mark originated in the second half of the 8th century, as the punctus interrogativus. At that time, it looked like a lightning flash, striking right to left.
     
  8. S.A.M. uniquely dreadful Valued Senior Member

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    Why the bias? I notice you did not leave a space for your ellipsis (which should have three dots, btw, Just so...), period, comma and semi-colon. Not even the brackets. Why?
     
  9. tim840 Registered Senior Member

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    It does look a little weird putting a question mark directly after the last word. It's just too close. It also looks weird putting a space there, though (at least, I think so). It looks like its a whole separate word rather than a punctuation mark. I mean, not a word but...just a separate entity. When it's an equal distance from the end of one sentence and the beginning of another, it's not a definite "Here's where the sentence ends, and now here's a new one." It kinda runs together.

    I think keyboards ought to have a special space bar for using between the last word of a sentence and a question mark. A halfway point.

    As for the exclamation mark, I think it looks fine immediately after the last word!
     
  10. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    The space between the end of a sentence and the question mark may be a hangover from the old days of mechanical typewriters (I'm guessing).

    A lot of people have various habits they were taught when they learned to type. Another one is putting two spaces instead of one between the full stop (period) at the end of one sentence and the capital letter starting the next sentence. That's fine if you're using a mechanical typewriter, but any word processor worth its salt should add in a little extra space automatically. This is what professional typesetting software does. If you insist on adding the extra space, as a lot of people still do, the text looks a little odd when word processed.
     
  11. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    And try to get rid of it when you don't want it. Pain in the ass? ass ? (note: there are three space bar spaces between the period after "it" and the P of Pain, in that last sentence. At least, there are in my typing and desired format.
     
  12. purple_hairstreak My true colours clash Registered Senior Member

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    And why is there no space before an ellipsis... but there is one after it? Hmm...
     
  13. Oli Heute der Enteteich... Registered Senior Member

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    Similar to a comma, full stop, colon, semi-colon...
    There's a space after ALL, except apostrophe(?), punctuation.
     
  14. Myles Registered Senior Member

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    Examine a question mark carefullu and you will see that iy consists of two parts, the top curly bit and the bottom bit, which is a full stop. The full stop comres at the end of a sentence and the marlk of interrogation is placed on top of it to save space.

    ( ...Is that clear... ) ?
     
  15. Enmos Staff Member

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    The answer is simple, I think it looks better

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    I put two dots, in stead of three, on purpose.
    The comma and the full stop are there to break or stop a sentence abruptly.
    The question mark and exclamation mark appear to belong to the word they are 'stuck' to. I guess I want it to be clear they have an effect on the whole sentence, not just the last word.
    Brackets.. hmm.. they are ugly either way. Sometimes I use spaces, sometimes I don't.. depends on the situation I guess.
     
  16. Enmos Staff Member

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    I like that suggestion.
     
  17. Enmos Staff Member

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    Aesthetics..

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  18. Enmos Staff Member

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    Yes.
    But.. it looks like shit.
    Besides, you put a space too !

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  19. Myles Registered Senior Member

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    Dat heb ik voor jou gemaakt. I knew you would appreciate it. I always us e a space but have never really thought about why I do it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2008
  20. Enmos Staff Member

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    lol :thumbsup:
     
  21. Orleander OH JOY!!!! Valued Senior Member

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    I have to have the '?' at the very end. Not a space and then the very end. I just like standardization.
     
  22. tim840 Registered Senior Member

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    I like standardization too. If I was going to insert a space between the end fo my sentence and the question mark, I would have to do the same thing with periods, commas, and every other punctuation mark.
     
  23. Myles Registered Senior Member

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    Whose standards ?
     

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