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Email vs. E-mail (Grammar Rules)

Is it email or e-mail? We cover this and more in this edition of Grammar Rules.

Is it email or e-mail? We cover this and more in this edition of Grammar Rules.

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It's been a while since we've addressed whether to use email or e-mail (click here to see our views on the subject back in 2011). Our views have shifted, and we're prepared to pick a winning spelling for today and in the future.

(Click here to learn the difference between same and similar.)

If you read the magazine and website, you probably already know which way we lean.

Email vs. E-mail

E-mail used to be the way we referred to electronic mail, and Writer's Digest used the hyphen as part of our actual style guide. As we were first entering the digital revolution, it made sense to hyphenate everything with an "e": e-mail, e-book, e-commerce. But that's when we thought "electronic"-(insert previously non-electronic thing here).

Email is still electronic mail, but we don't think of it that way anymore. Email is just email, which is different than a text or message or chat or post. We've adjusted our style guide, and it's consistent with both the AP and Chicago style guidelines.

Whenever AP and Chicago can agree on a style guideline, I'm more inclined to agree as well. So drop those hyphens and use email. The style may change again in the future, but for now, a consensus is forming.

Learn more in the online course, Grammar and Mechanics, from Writer’s Digest University:

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