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BR Bullpen:Manual of Style

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This page is a Bullpen policy that is currently being discussed.
You should edit this policy only to add new proposals (where there is a list of proposed policies) or to reflect a consensus developed during discussion. Please discuss this proposal with others on the associated talk page.

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  • Titles such as president, king, or emperor start with a capital letter when used as a title (followed by a name): "President Nixon", not "president Nixon". When used generically, they should be in lower case: "De Gaulle was the French president." The correct formal name of an office is treated as a proper noun. Hence: "Hirohito was Emperor of Japan." Similarly, "Louis XVI was the French king" but "Louis XVI was King of France", King of France being a title in that context.
  • The names of months, days, and holidays always begin with a capital letter: June, Monday, Fourth of July (when referring to the U.S. Independence Day, otherwise July 4 or 4 July).
  • Proper names of specific institutions (for example, Harvard University, New York-Presbyterian Hospital, George Brown College, etc.) are proper nouns and require capitalization.
  • Italics are mainly used to emphasize certain words or for the titles of works of literature and art.
  • Use italics for phrases in other languages and for isolated foreign words that do not yet have common use in the English language. Use anglicized spellings for such words, or use the native spellings if they use the Latin alphabet (with or without diacritics). For example: "Reading and writing in Japanese requires familiarity with hiragana, katakana, kanji, and sometimes rōmaji."
  • For words in everyday English use (a rule of thumb is to look up the term in an English language dictionary), do not require italicization.
  • Native spellings in non-Latin scripts (such as Greek or Cyrillic) should not be italicized at all, even where this is technically feasible; the difference of script suffices.
  • With quotation marks, use double-quotes ("") for most quotations — they are easier to read on the screen — and use single-quotes () for quotations nested within quotations. When a sentence fragment is quoted the full stop (period) is outside, when a complete sentence is quoted, period is inside. When quoting a question, question mark is inside. When questioning a quote, question mark is outside.
  • Do not put an entire quotation in italics just because it is a quotation.
  • Quotation marks should not be used to emphasize, instead use italics.
  • Do not assume that your reader is familiar with the acronym or abbreviation you are using. The standard writing style is to spell out the acronym or abbreviation on the first reference (wikilinked if appropriate) and then show the acronym or abbreviation after it, in parentheses. This tells readers they will probably find it later in the text and makes it easy for them to refer back to it.
    • When abbreviating United States, use "U.S."
  • Quotations should be placed under a heading named Quotations
  • Quotations should be indented
  • For long quotes (over fifty words) use a block quotation, which Wikipedia will indent from both margins. Do not enclose the block quote in quotation marks. To format a block quotation, do not use the wiki indentation mark, instead, use the HTML
    tag (
    QUOTE
    )
  • A bracketed phrase is enclosed by the punctuation of a sentence (as shown here). These rules apply to square "[ ]" as well as round "( )" brackets (parentheses). Avoid adjacent sets of brackets. Note while a single set of square brackets are used for external links, this only occurs when the first characters within the brackets are http://, thus the difference between [2] and [www.example.com].
  • The serial comma is a comma used immediately before a conjunction in a list of three or more items. It's use is depndant on the writer's preference unless a choice causes ambiguity.
  • In general, formal writing is preferred. Therefore, avoid the use of contractions—such as don’t, can’t, won’t, would’ve, they’d, and so on—unless they occur in a quotation.
  • When displaying measurements or currency use only the recorded value. Do not convert it to other units (example). To display both SI and Imperial units for heights and weights use the templates {{height}} and {{weight}} respectively.
  • While articles should be written in English, there is no preferred regional dialect.
  • Articles should use the same spelling system and grammatical conventions throughout.
  • If an article is predominantly written in one type of English, conform to that style.
  • Note this refers to images within the article text not in info boxes.
    • Start the article with a right-aligned image.
    • When using multiple images in the same article, they can be staggered left-and-right.
    • Avoid sandwiching text between two images facing each other.
    • Generally, right-alignment is preferred to left- or center-alignment.
    • Use captions to explain the relevance of the image to the article.
    • Specifying the size of a thumb image is in general not recommended: without specifying a size the width will be what the reader has specified as preference, with a default of 180px (which applies for most readers).
    • Photos and other graphics should have captions unless they are "self-captioning," as in reproductions of book covers, or when the graphic is an unambiguous depiction of the subject of the article. For example, in a biography article, a caption is not needed for a portrait of the subject pictured alone. Note: this does not apply to images of baseball cards which should have a caption.
  • Do not use bullets if the passage reads easily using plain paragraphs or indented paragraphs. If every paragraph in a section is bulleted, it is likely that none should be bulleted. Do not mix grammatical styles in a list – either use all complete sentences or use all sentence fragments. Begin each item with a capital letter, even if it is a sentence fragment. When using complete sentences, provide a period at the end of each. When using sentence fragments, do not provide a period at the end.
  • All the rules for bulleted lists apply also to numbered lists. Use numbered rather than bulleted lists only if you will be referring back to items by number, or the sequence of the items is critical (for example, you are explaining step 1, step 2, etc. of a multi-step process).
    • Make only links relevant to the context. It is not useful and can be very distracting to mark all possible words as hyperlinks. Links should add to the user’s experience; they should not detract from it by making the article harder to read.
    • Check links after they are wikified to make sure they direct to the correct concept; many dictionary words lead to disambiguation pages and not to complete articles on a concept. If an anchor into a targeted page (the label after a pound sign (#) in a URL) is available, is likely to remain stable, and gets the reader to the relevant area significantly faster, then use it.
    • Likewise, the use of piped links can be avoided in many cases when adding a grammatical suffix to a wikilink that is not part of an article title, by placing the suffix outside of the brackets. The suffix will still appear as part of the link, but will not be included in the link's target when actually clicked. For example, the markup scoutss appears in the article text as scoutss but links to the article named Scout. Note this is note the case with apostrophes.
  • For the most part formatting should be kept simple. This includes font size, family, color, spacing, etc. HTML and CSS markup should be used sparingly within a article. This may not be the case with templates.
  • If a font size must be specified, use a relative size, (i.e. font-size: 80%); not an absolute size (i.e. font-size: 8pt).
  • Using color alone to convey information (color coding) should not be done. This is not accessible to people with color blindness (especially monochromatic), on black-and-white printouts, on older monitors with fewer colors, on monochrome displays (PDAs, cell phones), and so on.
  • Links to external websites sjould be placed under a heading named External links followed by a bulleted list of the links. External links should summarize the website's contents, and indicate why the website is relevant to the article.
  • Use footnotes to cite your sources
  • Cite sources explicitly (using cite.php) or place the links under the heading of External link(s). Do not use phrases such as See also ..., See (title=Roland_Gladu&oldid=139028 example), According to one source, or One source says (example)
    • If the linked webpage was used as a source it should be placed under a heading of Sources or References in standard style
  • Avoid clusters of wikilinks (as seen here), instead use bulleted lists (reference.com/bpv/index.php?title=Johnny_Nee&oldid=89493 example)
  • Generic information about a team should not be placed on a player's page, instead on the team page itself. This will avoid broke into the majors with the 1934 New York Yankees, in Babe Ruth's last year with the team.
  • When a object in a sentence is about a specific object (2006 Milwaukee Brewers, 2002 AL, 1903 World Series) link to the specific object. If the object is the not about a specific object, link to the general article. Usually if the linked article is the subject, it should direct to the general article.
Example Sentence Link
General Article John Smith was drafted in the third round by the Milwaukee Brewers. Milwaukee Brewers
Specific Article In 2005, he hit .327 for the team with 5 home runs. 2005 Brewers - as the meaning of the fragment "In 2005" is "In 2005 for the Brewers"
Linked Subject The Atlanta Braves signed Smith to a minor league contract after the season. Atlanta Braves
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