| The New Republic
The apostrophe -- the punctuation mark, not the parenthetical form of speech directed at one person -- will never die as long as copy editors and auto-correct programs value it
, Katy Steinmetz argues. (Happy National Punctuation Day
, Katy!) Losing the punctuation mark forever would require a "revolution in thought and relaxation among gatekeepers of the written word," she writes.
Copyeditors are still changing donut to doughnut, after all. “Language is constantly changing, but predicting what will happen next is notoriously challenging,” [Oxford University's U.S. dictionary honcho Katherine] Martin says. “It is difficult to believe that copyeditors are going to stop distinguishing between its and it’s in the near future.”
But at this point in publishing history, throwing one's lot in with gatekeepers seems as sound as larding your pension with media-company stocks. The American Society of News Editors' annual surveys of copy editor jobs show there are about half as many copy-editing positions at newspapers than there were a decade ago
(though that category has also included layout editors and online producers at times in the survey).
And auto-correct? I'd like to think I'd go to the trouble of inserting apostrophes while texting if it stopped popping them in for me, but I kind of doubt it.