Grammar and mechanics: People, places, and things.

File extensions.

When referring generally to a file extension type, use all uppercase without a period. Add a lowercase s to make plural.

  • GIF
  • PDF
  • HTML
  • Plural: PDFs
  • Plural: GIFs

When referring to a specific file, the filename should be lowercase:

  • slowclap.gif
  • MCBenefits.pdf
  • ben-twitter-profile.jpg
  • ilovedonuts.html


If you don’t know your subject’s gender, or if it’s irrelevant, use “they,” “them,” and “their” as a singular pronoun. Use “he/him/his” and “she/her/her” pronouns when appropriate. Don’t use “one” as a pronoun.


Use the present tense when quoting someone in a blog post or other publications.

  • “Thanks to Blue Tusk Digital, we’ve seen tremendous growth this quarter,” says Jackie Lincoln.

Names and titles.

The first time you mention a person in writing, refer to them by their first and last name. After that, refer to them only by their last name.

Capitalize the names of departments and teams. The words “team” and “department” don’t need to be capitalized.

  • Marketing team
  • Support department

Capitalize individual job titles when you’re referring to a specific role. Avoid using capitalization when referring to the position in general terms.

  • Our new Marketing Manager starts today.
  • All the managers ate donuts.


The first time you mention a college, school, or university, refer to it by its full official name. After that, refer to it by its more common abbreviation.

  • Georgia Institute of Technology, Georgia Tech
  • Georgia State University, GSU

States, cities, and countries.

Spell out all city and state names. Never abbreviate city names.

Per AP Style, all cities should be accompanied by their state. The exceptions to this include Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Detroit, Honolulu, Houston, Indianapolis, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, New Orleans, New York, Oklahoma City, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Pittsburgh, St. Louis, Salt Lake City, San Antonio, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Washington.

Upon the first mention, write out the United States. After that, writing US is fine. The same rule applies to other countries or federations with a standard abbreviation (European Union, EU, United Kingdom, UK, for example).

URLs and websites.

Capitalize the names of websites and web publications. Don’t italicize them.

Avoid spelling out URLs. When need be, leave off the http://www.

Writing about other companies.

Honor the names companies give themselves and their products. Go by what they use on their official website.

  • iPad
  • YouTube
  • Yahoo!

Refer to a company or product as “it” (instead of “they”).