I'm very curious how important proper punctuation is to agency owners. I'm sure it's important to most agencies that the transcripts they send out look as good as they can, including accurancy and proper punctuation. But we all know there are varying and conflicting punctuationrules out there. Do you hope that your reporters can back up their punctuation with a rule? Or does it not matter?
We are faced with ever-changing rules, conflicting rules in different books, scopists and proofreaders who don't always know the rules, teaching our scopists and proofreaders to follow the rules or our "style" of punctuation.
We are representing you when we send our transcripts out. Does it matter to you that some basics aren't followed, like:
1. Comma before a coordinating conjunction (FANBOY) when it's between two independent clauses.
2. Semicolon between them if either clause has a comma within it.
3. Periods or semicolons between two ind. clauses that don't have a coord. conj.
4. Commas around restrictive clauses.
5. Commas around interjections (that is, for example, in other words, you know, etc.)
6. Dashes (not commas) to show an interruption in thought.
7. Resiting the urge to place a comma somewhere because it "feels" right.
And some other non-punctuation preferences like gluing people's names together so they don't become separated on two lines, spelling out numbers at the beginning of sentences if it's three words or less, etc.
Do you expect your reporters to know most basic punctuation rules? Or do you feel there are too many conflicting rules and styles out there to even bother worrying about it or bother your reporters with it?
Would you tend to not use a reporter again if you saw they didn't follow basic rules in their transcripts?
Do you assume most of your clients wouldn't know if the punctuation is right or not?
So how important is proper punctuation? Is it a dead art form that has completely left our profession for good? Has churning out the pages become more important than worrying about the subtle nuances the right punctuation can bring to a transcript?
Basically, am I driving myself crazy for nothing trying to follow the fules?
Thanks for any and all opinions. And, please, no harsh words in this thread. I know some people feel very strongly about punctuation and doing a good job, but let's be professional.