It’s National Punctuation Day: a day for people who care about periods, em dashes, colons, and Oxford commas to take pride in their precision; it’s also a day to point out punctuation impurities in the prose of other people!
We asked some Northeastern professors to point out their biggest punctuation pet peeves. (To help them drive home the point, we may have taken one or two liberties with our punctuation.)
Joseph Reagle, communication studies: “I have a rule, no more than one exclamation point per e-mail!! My spouse has to use a template when she responds to customers and there’s so many exclamation points!!! Since it’s customer service, people think you need to end every sentence with three exclamation points!!!!!!!”
Mya Poe, English; director of the writing program:
No one uses them in text messages
because they’re considered abrasive”