The New York Times has not just gone astray with its payment scheme; it’s gone completely off the deep end, gotten lost in the forest, fallen off the cliff and into a pit, and is knee-deep in any other mixed and fractured metaphor you can devise... linguistically.
See, they have recently updated their style guide, removing, according to editor Philip Corbett,
some aging or outdated technical terms, such as
CD-ROM, floppy disk, Dictaphone, Usenet, newsgroups, VHS, CAD-CAM and I.S.D.N. Yes, they used to use periods in
ISDN, as they still do in
C.P.U., and others. But I’m happy to see that they’re eliminating the dots in
They also agree with me on capitalizing
But here’s where they now err:
We no longer have to write about people sendingan e-mail message— we can call itan e-mail.The term is also acceptable as a verb. (For now, at least, we are keeping the hyphen for this and similar coinages like e-commerce and e-reader.)
I’m apathetic, disinterested on the hyphenation issue. I, myself, omit the hyphen and prefer
I sent him a mail. Of course not.
A letter is parallel to
an email message, and they should keep it that way. If one wants to be shorter, it’s easy:
I sent him email, works fine, just as
I sent him mail, does.
But the New York Times is giving in to sloppy, lazy usage, such as is unbecoming the Gray Lady.