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    • Join Date: Aug 2003
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    Help with iPhone!!!!

    Hi teachers,

    Hope you can clear this one up for me as it came up in class today!

    We are learning about possessive pronouns and the sentence was:

    The iPhone is mine.

    Now iPhone is a proper noun but Apple spell it with a small 'i' and just to make it more confusing followed by a big 'P' on their website and I believe the phone itself!

    I told the kids that because they had branded it this way although it was a proper noun to use this grammatically! Then straight after had my doubts!

    If anyone could enlighten me it would be appreciated!!


  1. Senior Member
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    Re: Help with iPhone!!!!

    It is a proper noun, yes. However, you do still respect the tradename and never capitalize the i.

    In formal writing, however, you need to avoid the oddity of starting a sentence like this:

    iPhones are here to stay.

    You do this by recasting the sentence:

    It is clear that iPhones are here to stay.
    The iPhone is here to stay.

    The problem is not a new one. We've had it ever since e e cummings, and by the time he went out of style, k d lang reminded us of it.

  2. BobK's Avatar
    Harmless drudge
    English Teacher
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    Re: Help with iPhone!!!!

    Your advice was right, although a patent lawyer would favour some ridiculously heavy-handed circumlocution like 'My "iPhone" brand mobile telecommunications device'. (Lawyers get very touchy about using a brand name as a proper noun; it makes the IPR harder to protect. But do people really say 'Things go better with "Coca-Cola" brand cola-flavoured drink'? )



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