Style Guide

When making contributions to, please consider the following points.

Write an article about 400-800 words long, as a rule of thumb.

Please use plain, easy-to-understand English.

  • Avoid jargon and impenetrable artspeak.
  • If you use an acronym please spell it out in the first instance and then put the abbreviation in brackets after; Arts Council England (ACE).
  • Please avoid cliches like the plague.
  • Especially saying your event or idea is 'unique'.
  • Use short easy-to-understand sentences.
  • Write one to ten in words, and 11 and over in figures
  • Use clear instructions so readers understand what they must do; 'please complete this form and send it to...' rather than 'Completed forms should be returned to...'
Please write articles in the third person (that is to say, 'Tate Modern are...' not 'We are...'). With so many contributors adding to the site, the use of third person ensures website visitors understand who they should contact for further information about any story.

Some notes on punctuation

Please be careful with punctuation.

  • You may write titles two ways; Peter Blake's Babe Rainbow or Peter Blake's 'Babe Rainbow'. But just one or the other, please.
  • Avoid words in capitals, and exclamation marks; they give me a headache.
  • Please use quote marks not speech marks -  Revolutionary Arts' Dan Thompson said, 'I can't stand bad punctuation.'
  • Please use the colon, semicolon, ellipsis (that is, '...') and dash to clarify what you're saying.
  • Keep it simple - TS Eliot and eg are acceptable.

Dates and times

When writing dates and times, please write days and months in full, use full stops in times, use the shortest way of writing the time (7pm not 7.00pm) and use this order;

  • Tuesday 20 April 2004, 7.30pm

Using apostrophes to abbreviate years is acceptable;

  • '30s calypso music.

Please use a dash, to indicate to and from.

  • The exhibition takes place from 30 August - 5 September


Britain started its changeover to the metric system in 1965 ... it's about time we got there. All measurements on this site should be metric, that is to say kilometres (km), metres (m), centimetres (cm) and millimetres (mm).


If adding links to an article, the preferred form is to end the story with;


  • Link One
  • Link Two

Please use this format to add internal links, for example to relevant stories, and use it to add 'for further information' details;


  • Telephone Number
  • Email Address


Last Updated: Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 09:01 PM UTC|Hits: 11,083 View Printable Version