How proofreaders deal with punctuation on webpages


People doing our proofreading course often ask for advice about correcting punctuation on websites. And not without good reason.

The truth is that many websites change, or abandon the traditional rules of punctuation. This means ignoring some of the lessons learned on our online learning proofreading course

Webpage punctuation really depends on the site and the reader. But it’s best to start by following the correct rules of punctuation, and then adapt from there.

Most sites use as little punctuation as possible, as it slows readers down and makes skimming difficult. That doesn’t mean leaving symbols out, but structuring the copy so you don’t need it.

For instance, a good copyeditor will reword sentences to remove sub clauses and the need for commas.

Most sites avoid semi colons. Colons are OK, and are often used instead of commas. Why? Simply because they look better.

If you’re proofreading a website, it’s best to do what we advise on our online proofreading course: check the client’s style in advance.

See our proofreading courses