Publishing convention re bird-names

To: "'Richard Nowotny'" <>, "'Birding Aus'" <>
Subject: Publishing convention re bird-names
From: "Philip Veerman" <>
Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2012 15:04:31 +1000
Hello Richard,

I agree entirely on your point. However I think it overly generous of you to
refer to this trend of ignoring the intelligence behind capitalisation as a
"convention". It is hardly deserving of that title. Unless you care to call
laziness and stupidity a "convention". Is it anything other than laziness
and stupidity? 

Communication in many forms is going that way, just like the ABC news
readers who don't know the difference between "is" and "has" or can't be
bothered to use either word but just a useless "s" sound. Or people sending
me text messages on my mobile phone with "UR" as intending to say "your", or
was it "you are". Etc etc blah blah.

Philip Veerman
24 Castley Circuit
Kambah  ACT  2902
02 - 62314041

-----Original Message-----
 On Behalf Of Richard
Sent: Tuesday, 10 April 2012 12:36 PM
To: 'Birding Aus'
Subject: Publishing convention re bird-names

I know this topic has received attention on Birding-Aus previously but my
interest was re-awakened by reading in an ornithological book of "little
owls" and being reminded of the futility of trying to determine whether the
author is referring to smaller owls in general, a particular group of small
owls, or Little Owls Athene noctua. I continue to be baffled by the
widespread publishing convention (used by most newspapers and books) not to
capitilise the common names of bird species (and all other biological
species for that matter).

Is anyone with publishing experience/knowledge able to explain why this
convention has been adopted and perpetuated, in spite of its obvious
failings in regard to clarity of meaning, particularly when the name
includes words in everyday use such as little, common, long-toed, singing,




Port Melbourne, Victoria

M: 0438 224 456


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