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Thread: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

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    Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    At some point within the past few years (maybe more), a directive was put out within the Army to capitalize the word "Soldier" (also "Soldiers") in any written correspondence. At the same time, "Family" (and "Families") was also directed to be capitalized. Yet I notice everytime I read the Army Times, neither word is capitalized, while the word "Marines" is.

    I'm very disappointed that the publication that is supposed to report on and for Soldiers does not show us the proper courtesy. I realize that Army Times is not written by Soldiers, but I would expect it to adhere to the same standards when we are its target audience and are one of its main topics.

    Is Army Times going to correct this deficiency? Yeah, it's nitpicky or whatever, but it's a bit annoying.

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    I think you have a valid argument, while not 100% it's certainly a noteworthy issue. Here is a random sampling from their articles:

    Campbell soldier killed in Afghanistan
    Aug 26, 2012 | ... FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. — The Army says a soldier based at Fort Campbell, Ky., has been killed in Afghanistan. The Army says 20-year ...
    Carson soldier arrested in infant’s death
    Aug 26, 2012 | ... COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Authorities say a 20-year-old Fort Carson soldier has been arrested for the death of his 10-month-old stepson. Police reported Saturday ...
    Prosecutor: Murder case uncovers terror plot
    Aug 27, 2012 | The Associated Press ... LUDOWICI, Ga. — Four Army soldiers based in southeast Georgia killed a former comrade and his girlfriend to protect an anarchist ...
    Huachuca names soldier found dead near base
    Aug 24, 2012 | ... FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. — Army officials at Fort Huachuca have released the name of a soldier found dead at a hotel near the southern Arizona base. Base officials say the ...
    Lewis soldier dies of Afghanistan injuries
    Aug 23, 2012 | ... JOINT BASE LEWIS-McCHORD, Wash. — A soldier from Joint Base Lewis-McChord has died at an Army medical center in San Antonio ...
    Lewis-McChord soldier dies in Afghanistan
    Aug 22, 2012 | ... BALTIMORE — The Pentagon says a soldier from Frederick has died in Afghanistan. Twenty-four-year-old Sgt. David V. Williams died ...
    Ex-soldier testifies marriage was fraudulent
    Aug 22, 2012 | The Associated Press ... WICHITA, Kan. — A former Fort Riley soldier told jurors Tuesday he was in a financial bind when he married a Jamaican woman ...
    Huachuca soldier found dead at Ariz. hotel
    Aug 21, 2012 | ... FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. — Army officials at Fort Huachuca in southern Arizona say a soldier has been found dead at a hotel near the base. Base officials say the soldier ...
    Police search for Hood soldier in ex’s slaying
    Aug 20, 2012 | Staff writer ... Police in Killeen, Texas, say they are hunting a soldier accused in the fatal stabbing of his ex-girlfriend last week and they want the ...
    Soldier killed in Afghanistan identified
    Aug 17, 2012 | ... PORTLAND, Ore. — The Defense Department says a 22-year-old soldier from Tigard, Ore., has been killed in Afghanistan. Pfc. Andrew J. Keller died Wednesday in ...

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Creaminess View Post
    At some point within the past few years (maybe more), a directive was put out within the Army to capitalize the word "Soldier" (also "Soldiers") in any written correspondence. At the same time, "Family" (and "Families") was also directed to be capitalized. Yet I notice everytime I read the Army Times, neither word is capitalized, while the word "Marines" is.

    I'm very disappointed that the publication that is supposed to report on and for Soldiers does not show us the proper courtesy. I realize that Army Times is not written by Soldiers, but I would expect it to adhere to the same standards when we are its target audience and are one of its main topics.

    Is Army Times going to correct this deficiency? Yeah, it's nitpicky or whatever, but it's a bit annoying.
    Its shitty. Just like for the AF, "Airmen" isnt supposed to be capitalized. Its horseshit. I try to capitalize Marines, Soldiers, Airmen even Coast Guardsmen whenever I type any of them. Its simple respect for the service members.

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Creaminess View Post
    At some point within the past few years (maybe more), a directive was put out within the Army to capitalize the word "Soldier" (also "Soldiers") in any written correspondence. At the same time, "Family" (and "Families") was also directed to be capitalized. Yet I notice everytime I read the Army Times, neither word is capitalized, while the word "Marines" is.
    Most proper nouns (for example, Fred, New York, Mars, Coca Cola) begin with a capital letter. As a general rule, a common noun does not begin with a capital letter unless it appears at the start of a sentence. The word "soldier" is not a proper noun. The word "family" is definitely not a proper noun.

    ==================

    More info:

    Nouns name people, places, and things. Every noun can further be classified as common or proper. A proper noun has two distinctive features: 1) it will name a specific, usually a one-of-a-kind, item, and 2) it will begin with a capital letter no matter where it occurs in a sentence.

    Examples of a common noun: writer, teacher, beagle, cookie, city, restaurant, document, school.

    Examples of a proper noun: Herman Melville, Mrs. Hacket, Snoopy, Oreo, Orlando, Tito's Taco Palace, Declaration of Independence, University of Southern California.

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Creaminess View Post
    At some point within the past few years (maybe more), a directive was put out within the Army to capitalize the word "Soldier" (also "Soldiers") in any written correspondence. At the same time, "Family" (and "Families") was also directed to be capitalized. Yet I notice everytime I read the Army Times, neither word is capitalized, while the word "Marines" is.

    I'm very disappointed that the publication that is supposed to report on and for Soldiers does not show us the proper courtesy. I realize that Army Times is not written by Soldiers, but I would expect it to adhere to the same standards when we are its target audience and are one of its main topics.

    Is Army Times going to correct this deficiency? Yeah, it's nitpicky or whatever, but it's a bit annoying.
    I agree, it is annoying. Unfortunately, that's all there is to it. As a private company, there is no requirement that they abide by Army rules.

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Creaminess View Post
    At some point within the past few years (maybe more), a directive was put out within the Army to capitalize the word "Soldier" (also "Soldiers") in any written correspondence. At the same time, "Family" (and "Families") was also directed to be capitalized. Yet I notice everytime I read the Army Times, neither word is capitalized, while the word "Marines" is.

    I'm very disappointed that the publication that is supposed to report on and for Soldiers does not show us the proper courtesy. I realize that Army Times is not written by Soldiers, but I would expect it to adhere to the same standards when we are its target audience and are one of its main topics.

    Is Army Times going to correct this deficiency? Yeah, it's nitpicky or whatever, but it's a bit annoying.
    I agree, it is annoying. Unfortunately, that's all there is to it. As a private company, there is no requirement that they abide by Army rules.

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Bonham View Post
    I agree, it is annoying. Unfortunately, that's all there is to it. As a private company, there is no requirement that they abide by Army rules.

    It's annoying? That's all you got? It was the Army that dictated that the S be capitalized when used in the word Soldier in Army documents, but as you correctly pointed out, the Army Times (and sister publications are privately owned) is not in any way, shape or form obligated to follow the grammatical directives of the US Army.

    Someone got a bug up their butt years ago thinking that adding a capital S to the word soldiers elevated the word to a higher level of respect. That's utter crap from the Army. We respect the man or woman in the uniform for what they do every day. By the Army's edict, we are somehow expected to hold every soldier in high respect, including the likes of Colonel Johnson (the convicted felon who was permitted to remain in the service despite 15+ convictions) and General Ward, who defrauded the government out of how much money and will unlikely be court martialed for illegally using government funds for him and his wife to travel and stay in prime digs throughout the world (to name just a few of those soldiers that don't deserve a capital S).

    Just because the AT staff doesn't capitalize it like the Army wants it to be capitalized, does not mean that they don't respect them, so in the words of the Eagles, "Get over it"

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by monarch93 View Post
    Someone got a bug up their butt years ago thinking that adding a capital S to the word soldiers elevated the word to a higher level of respect.
    I agree. Being a former Army journalist, I thought the guidance to capitalize the word "soldier" in every article we wrote was as stupid as the let's give evveryone a beret to make them feel special lovefest, (even if it took respect away from those who earned a beret). I was fine with being a "soldier" and it in no way diminished my respect for service in the Army.

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Creaminess View Post
    At some point within the past few years (maybe more), a directive was put out within the Army to capitalize the word "Soldier" (also "Soldiers") in any written correspondence. At the same time, "Family" (and "Families") was also directed to be capitalized. Yet I notice everytime I read the Army Times, neither word is capitalized, while the word "Marines" is.

    I'm very disappointed that the publication that is supposed to report on and for Soldiers does not show us the proper courtesy. I realize that Army Times is not written by Soldiers, but I would expect it to adhere to the same standards when we are its target audience and are one of its main topics.

    Is Army Times going to correct this deficiency? Yeah, it's nitpicky or whatever, but it's a bit annoying.
    I gave your reputation some kudos but some haters still are keeping you in the red lol.

    But yes, soldier in the generic term is lower case but as a title in which we are; deserves to be upper-case. We Were Soldiers!

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    Re: Why does Army Times not capitalize the word "Soldier"?

    Quote Originally Posted by monarch93 View Post
    It's annoying? That's all you got? It was the Army that dictated that the S be capitalized when used in the word Soldier in Army documents, but as you correctly pointed out, the Army Times (and sister publications are privately owned) is not in any way, shape or form obligated to follow the grammatical directives of the US Army.

    Someone got a bug up their butt years ago thinking that adding a capital S to the word soldiers elevated the word to a higher level of respect. That's utter crap from the Army. We respect the man or woman in the uniform for what they do every day. By the Army's edict, we are somehow expected to hold every soldier in high respect, including the likes of Colonel Johnson (the convicted felon who was permitted to remain in the service despite 15+ convictions) and General Ward, who defrauded the government out of how much money and will unlikely be court martialed for illegally using government funds for him and his wife to travel and stay in prime digs throughout the world (to name just a few of those soldiers that don't deserve a capital S).

    Just because the AT staff doesn't capitalize it like the Army wants it to be capitalized, does not mean that they don't respect them, so in the words of the Eagles, "Get over it"
    Human languages are simply a series of arbitrary conventions. I see nothing wrong with the idea of capitalizing the "s" before "Soldier". I'm not indoctrinated into it yet... but I'll write/type "Marine" with a capital "M" without even thinking about it. Its just convention.

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