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Thread: Serial comma

  1. #1
    Allen165 is offline Key Member
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    Default Serial comma

    I'd like to know where you stand when it comes to using the serial comma. Do you always place a comma before the final conjunction in a list? Or are you selective?

    I don't like to use the serial comma indiscriminately because I sometimes find it to be disruptive. I believe it shouldn't be used when leaving it out doesn't cause confusion. Here's an example where I would not have used it:

    "Justice Berger essentially applied a balancing approach which sought to weigh the competing First Amendment interests of the various participants affected, i.e., cable operators, cable programmers, and cable viewers."

    But, of course, when it can actually disambiguate the meaning of a sentence, it should be used.

    Thanks for the feedback.

  2. #2
    Allen165 is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Serial comma

    I'm surprised no one has (yet) weighed in on the use of the serial comma. It is, after all, a controversial topic.

  3. #3
    Barb_D's Avatar
    Barb_D is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: Serial comma

    Always. I always, always use it.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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