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Editorial Help Desk



Word of the Month

Putative: (adj). Considered or reputed to be. 


  1. Mr. Childs is the putative owner of the property, but he has nothing to prove it.
  2. The ice cream is putatively the best in the county.


Tip of the Month

Give Up the Habit of Underlining

Use italics to indicate the name of a publication or to emphasize words in your text. Avoid underlining. It is merely a poor substitute for using italics. Underlining was popular during the era of typewriters, because typewriters had no keys for bold or italics. Technology has come a long way since typewriters.

Also, underlining makes text difficult to read because it takes up white space between lines (See Garner’s Modern American Usage, Copyright 2003, Oxford University Press.)

When is it okay to use underlining?

  • Consider underlining as only a special use tool, for advertising and other commercial treatment of text.
  • Proofreaders and editors underline text to indicate “italics” to the word processor or typesetter.
  • In interactive text, to highlight URLs and other links. The text is also written in the color blue.


As always, when in doubt, check it out! Contact the Editorial Help Desk for help (





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