I was taught in CR school that at the end of a question where they just say correct, that it should be a comma, correct? The owner of the company wants a semi-colon. I use a semi-colon for ;is that correct but I don't like it for ;correct. What say you?

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In the situation, the owner is correct - simply because she gets to make the rules.

Where you get to make the rules, a comma is correct.

Q: You like the job and you want to keep that money coming in, correct?
A: Yep.
Mary Jo's right. I did a jot for a FO several years ago ... in North Carolina, if that matters ... where she made me change all ending punctuation in that type of situation to a semicolon ... ; correct and also ; is that correct and ; is that right, etc. Didn't "make me," but asked me, and I complied. It just wasn't a big deal, and I did it to keep the FO happy ... who was also going to write my check. She also wanted Court Reporter capped (I'd NEVER do that on my own) and other little things. Title of the document that we were talking about was a trust, so when they referred to THE TRUST or THE TRUST AGREEMENT, she wanted that in all caps. Again, I would NEVER do that on my own, but she also wrote the checks, and it was a small point.

I use a comma before correct and right, single words like that. I've seen others say to use a semicolon with backup from books, seminar speakers, etc. I stick with a comma. It looks so odd to me to have a semicolon before a single word like that!

I never -- I won't say never. I very very rarely use "okay" with a comma. It's usually sentence on its own.

Mary Ann, ditto to everything you said. I'd never do those things on my own. If it made the writer of the check happy, fine.
(Just an FYI - semicolon is a solid word.)

Also, from Morson's, supporting your FO's position:

When a statement is followed by a related question that does not repeat the same
subject and verb, use a period to end the statement and use a question mark to
end the question.


a. You falsified the record. Isn't that so?

b. She dropped all charges. Isn't that correct?

c. You never saw him. Right?

d. He overcame the loss. Correct?

A semicolon can also be used to separate these related ideas when the first
clause and second clause are independent clauses. Other expressions are also
frequently used in these exchanges. Some well-respected writers use a comma to
separate the one-word questions in Examples 11c and 11d; so that may soon
become a rule, not just a style, as in Example 11i.


e. It rained that day; is that not a fact?

f. You were not alone; is that true?

g. You were not alone; isn't that right?

h. You were not alone; right?

i. You were not alone, right?
I believe the comma is correct, but it's the owner's agency, and therefore, her rules.
It's all about the power trip. Twenty years ago I worked for someone who was on a power trip. Today, I can't imagine a FO having the time for a power trip. I can see checking the transcript of a brand new reporter, but not someone who has been reporting for some time.
I'm afraid I don't agree with that. I think they have every right to check my work, probably should, and I assume that they are doing so. It's my expectation that if they are paying me, they can and should be assuring themselves they're getting the product they want. And it may not have much to do at all with the quality of the work, even, more that both parties are clear about the format that is to be used.

And that's just like I have every right to work for an agency where I am not pleased with how I'm treated or that doesn't seem on top of their game, so to speak.
The problem with an agency owner who dictates what punctuation to use is that it's starting to get into an employer/employee replationship vs. hiring an IC and letting them do the work the way they want to do it. Now, if the agency owner doesn't like the IC's punctuation, they can always choose not to use that IC again. But to tell them it HAS to be a semi vs. comma? Kind of sounds like a slippery slope to me. Are they going to tell me I have to wear a dress vs. slacks, exactly how many minutes early I have to arrive, and where I can park too?

I had one agency owner not too long ago send me a Mapquest map that started at my home and ended at the job site (so I'd know how to get to the job, I guess?). But, I've also been taking depos on a case where plf's atty is trying to prove that an IC is really an employee, and therefore the employer also should be held liable for the auto accident that occurred while the IC was on his way to an appointment. Want to know one of the things he's using to make his case? Yep, the "agency owner" provided directions to the IC on how to get to the appointment.

Slippery slope.
Provided directions??? Wowwwwwwwwwwwwww!
Just to clarify, I am not really responding to the semicolon v. comma issue. Frankly, I would find that particular correction to my work to be overbearing. I have a strong hunch that FO and I would not get along. But, yes, I do think they're within their rights to check over my work when I'm representing their firm.
Allison, that sounds like a great book, and those are good examples! I very rarely use semicolons in a transcript. One thing I can say for sure, though, and that is I cringe when I see someone's transcript full of unnecessary and misused semicolons. I think some reporters tend to use them because they think they indicate ... I don't know how to phrase it, but a more sophisticated transcript. Misuse of the semicolon is, to me, anyway, one of the worst mistakes a reporter can make that makes the transcript look bad, even if all the words are exactly right.

Hear, hear. I agree with Mary Ann. I have also seen transcripts riddled with semicolons that stick out like a sore thumb.


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