Sunday, September 20, 2009

Trademark This

So I'm writing response letters to some creative nonfiction essays, and I notice one of the students keeps capitalizing laundromat. So my marginalia cries, "Why? What's so proper about this laundromat?" Then I go to type up my comments and every time I type laundromat Word forces the capital Laundromat. Seriously? I do a little reading and it turns out it's just one corporation protecting another.

My love of Word is no secret. Here's another autocratic slip that shows the foulness of the MS soul. Too much? The point is that just on practical terms forcing the capital is a mistake because it makes the reader stop because the registered trademark is for a washing machine, not, as everyone understands, the place one goes to use a washing machine.

But more importantly, when words become part of the language, they belong to the people, not a corporation. Get over it kleenex.


© 2009

S. Craig Renfroe, Jr.


Jason Jordan said...

It's interesting when a brand name is substituted for an object or function. Like, say, "Kleenex" for "tissue," or "Google" for "search," or "Coke" for a "soft drink, pop, or soda," etc.

Alex. C said...

And why, after trying to teach Word for years, does it insist on correcting my spelling of "recieve" each and every time. That's how *I* spell it, Word!