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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The example in H, or was it I, doesn't match the text, the way I had read it.

But, yeah, I wouldn't expect you to stress or go back and damned forth. ;-)
It was 11i.

so that may soon become a rule, not just a style, as in Example 11i.
i. You were not alone, right?


The way I read it is Example 11i is the style example. In other words "not just a style" can't be lifted out of the sentence and have it read "so that may soon become a rule as in Example 11i."

None of her examples include the comma, so I take it from that that she considers the comma a style preference only.
I like the comma also. I am currently in an Advanced English and Office Practices class at our school, and we use Morson's. It advocates the semicolon or period and my teacher is a big believer in that. She says the comma is dead wrong. She doesn't want us to use it on transcripts. You bet when I get out of school that it will be a comma!
Nobody has mentioned the so-called "echo question." When I went to court reporting school, I do remember this terminology mentioned about when to use a semicolon and when to use a comma with interrogatories. The echo question occurs at the end of a sentence and is usually, though not necessarily, negative. Echo questions echo the subject and verb of the sentence.

These are examples of echo questions, ones which I was taught to use a comma:

SPEAKER: You were there, weren't you?
SPEAKER: You did murder Mr. Smith, didn't you?
SPEAKER: He was present in church, wasn't he?

According to Diane Castilaw's reference book, "COURT REPORTING GRAMMAR AND PUNCTUATION," she says this about the semicolon, as referenced below.

The semicolon lies approximately midway between the comma and the period in terms of strength. It can act as either a weak period or a strong comma. This chameleon of punctuation can change to meet the requirements of the sentence, but knowng when to use the semicolon instead of the comma or the period can be tricky and must be a learned skill. The CR (court reporter) should make it a rule never to employ this mark without a sound reason. If properly used, the semicolon can clarify meaning and make the reading an easier task.

A semicolon can replace a period when the following occur:

Two sentences are closely related in thought.
They are not connected by a coordinating conjunction.
They are somewhat brief.

Certain short sentences are heard repeatedly during courtroom testimony (for example: is that right, isn't that right, is that correct, isn't that true, do you know, do you recall). These should be preceded by a semicolon.

The CR must be aware of exactly what a question like "is that correct" refers to. On occasion, another sentence may be inserted between the two. In this instance, the "is that correct' would be separate.

EXAMPLE: Jonathan's divorce occurred in 1989. You didn't know that he had ever been married. Isn't that the correct date?

Use a semicolon before a transitional phrase (on the other hand, for example, in fact, in other words, et cetera) that occurs between two independent clauses. A transitional phrase has exactly the same function as a conjunctive adverb.

CORRECT: George was on one side one day and the other side the next day; in other words, he was terribly confused.
ACCEPTABLE: George was on one side one day and the other side the next day. In other words, he was terribly confused.

WRONG: George was on one side one day and tghe other side the next day, in other words, he was terribly confused.

NOTE: A period can be used in place of the semicolon before conjunctive adverbs and transitional phrases, but this is considered less desirable than the semicolon unless the sentence is quite long and needs to be broken up.

This is one style book for CRS, according to Diane Castilaw; however, as we all know, when in Rome, we should do as the Romans do. ;-)
One more IMPORTANT semicolon thingie I'd like to share, according to Grammar Girl, is this: Semicolons according to Grammar Girl

Here's the COMMON ERROR -- yes, I am calling it an "error" -- I see quite often in transcripts, and so I snipped it out of the above-referenced link:

Also, one important thing to remember is that you never use semicolons with coordinating conjunctions such as and, or, and but when you're joining two main clauses. Instead, if you're joining two main clauses with a coordinating conjunction, you use a comma.

I really don't like seeing a semicolon before the words and, or, and but, EXCEPT -- and this is a big "EXCEPT" -- when it is used to separate elements of a series, as referenced below:

My former addresses include 1234 Maple Street, Raleigh, North Carolina; 5678 Dogwood Road, New York, New York; and 910 Fifth Avenue, Chicago, Illinois.
thanks for the feedback. and by the way, she does tell us to wear skirts/dress, not pants..haha...jackieh
"thanks for the feedback. and by the way, she does tell us to wear skirts/dress, not pants..haha...jackieh"

No way! In this day and age.

I had an agency do that, but it was years ago. I think it was Judy's ex. Their paperwork said no pants AND no perfume.

Funny how we all have our different "bibles." I never heard of Diane Castilaw till this thread, and I never heard of Morson's till after 20 years of reporting.
Funny how we all have our different "bibles." I never heard of Diane Castilaw till this thread, and I never heard of Morson's till after 20 years of reporting.

Ditto!
I actually was turned on to Diane Castilaw from the NSRA, which later became the NCRA, I think. '70s era? I can't remember. I get the alphabet soup of acronyms and dates mixed up these days.

Today, for most of my jobs, I have to adhere to the GPO Style Manual. OMG, it would make the hair stand up on the back of your neck if you had to apply some of their punctuation rules. LOL

I enjoy threads like this, though, because it helps me to reinforce my own skills. I may be an old dog, but I can and do learn new tricks!
AND no perfume

Believe it or not, there is a reason for the no-perfume policy. All it takes is interviewing people for a position and then you see how the majority of the interviewing public will douse... no, make that submerge themselves in perfume/cologne.

I went to a doc's depo 20 years ago. I walked into her office and she handed me alcohol towelettes and told me to remove my perfume. She was allergic and my perfume would cause her a migraine. She said if I didn't remove it ALL, they'd have to get another reporter or continue the depo. I have a current client and had a multivolume witness that were also allergic to odors like perfume.

Yes, maybe "allergic" sometimes means they've encountered too dang many people that believe that their choice of odor needs to experienced to the fullest extent of all within a four-block radius and they use "allergic" as their defense.

You've gone into the movies or a store or depo rooms and encountered somebody that never heard the phrase "a little dab'll do ya" or "less is more"? Can you imagine having to sit through a full-day depo with a CR that thinks if s/he can't smell their choice of odor any longer, then it needs a reapplying and is gassing out all occupants in the room (and that goes for cigarette smokers and some people that like to be able to smell their breath too, or believe deodorant is hindering their body's natural excretion process and refuse to adhere to polite society's rules)?

I can't even remember the "no pants" rule, but will venture a guess that it had to do with a staff reporter that thought stirrup'd stretch pants and shirts that barely covered her arse were appropriate for depos. How do you tactfully tell just one reporter out of several that while your husband may think you have a sexy bum in those stretch pants, that it's just not appropriate for the business world?
By saying dress slacks or business pant suits are appropriate in a businessplace but stirrup pants, sweatsuits, and jeans are not. Some people just don't get it. Dresses and skirts can get just as inappropriate though. Sometimes the offender needs to be confronted directly. Subtlety doesn't work.

I haven't worn perfume years. Too many people are sensitive to scents.
I was taught in school that "right" and "correct" are short for "is that correct" and "is that right" so we always use semicolons because "is that correct" is a complete sentence. You can look up Margie Wakeman-Wells (English teacher).. She has a book about court reporters and English..

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