March 20, 2014

Poynter’s Vicki Krueger shares some news from the American Copy Editors Society conference that will rock copy editors to their very cores: AP Stylebook editors said at a session Thursday that “Over” is fine when referring to a quantity; you don’t have to change it to “more than.”

The news elicited a gasp, Krueger reports.

Here’s the explanation from AP Stylebook Editor Darrell Christian, via Erin Madigan White, AP senior media relations manager:

“We decided on the change because it has become common usage. We’re not dictating that people use ‘over’ – only that they may use it as well as ‘more than’ to indicate greater numerical value.”

Last year AP changed style on underway, a move that caused what’s sure to be minor dismay in comparison.

In April of 2012, they loosened up on the use of “hopefully.”

Related: ‘More than my dead body!’ Journalists react to AP’s over/more than change

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Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at and managing editor of Washington City…
Andrew Beaujon

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