One Week Later, AP Stylebook Users Still Talking about Change from ‘Web site’ to ‘website’

Last week I got a tip that the AP Stylebook would be changing its style for “Web site” to “website.” I knew the news would be big but didn’t expect people to be so vocal on Twitter and in the blogosphere about their thoughts on the change. Some disagreed with the change. Others thought it couldn’t come soon enough. I always thought that “Web site” was an antiquated way of writing it, so I’m glad I can now write it as “website.”

One week later, people are still talking about the change.

Wanting to find out what other journalists thought about the Stylebook’s decision, I followed the buzz on Twitter and talked to New York Times columnist David Pogue and others to hear their thoughts:

“When the AP Stylebook announced via Twitter that it was changing the style for “Web site” to “website,” some users let out shouts of praise: ‘Finally!‘ ‘Yes!!!‘ ‘Yeeha!

“The reactions aren’t surprising, given how many people have asked the AP to change the style from two words to one word, arguing that “Web site” is an antiquated way of writing it.

“The change, which was formally announced at the American Copy Editors Society conference Friday afternoon, is effective Saturday and will appear in the 2010 Stylebook, which is slated to come out next month.

” ‘We decided to make the change because ‘website’ is increasingly common,’ said Sally Jacobsen, deputy managing editor for projects at the AP and one of three Stylebook editors. ‘We also had invited readers and users of the Stylebook to offer us some suggestions for a new social media guide that we’re including in the 2010 Stylebook, and we got a very good response and a large number of people who favored ‘website’ as one word.’ ”


Here are some other Poynter Online stories I’ve written throughout the past month or so:

Chat Replay: How Can I Maintain Relationships With Hiring Managers (Moderated the chat)

Public Has New Way to Report, Track Bay Area News Errors

Percentage of Minorities is Higher Than Last Time Newsrooms Were This Size

NPR Ombudsman: Journalists Should Look Harder for Female Sources

Wolff: Newspapers Will Never Understand the Web

USA Today iPad App Maximizes Familiarity, Leisurely Discovery Editor Edits Nearly All Stories by Hand

How to Use Interactive Time Lines in Breaking News & Ongoing Stories

NPR Reporters Buy Toxic Asset, Become Stakeholders to Explain Financial Crisis

Published by Mallary Tenore Tarpley

Mallary is a mom of two young kiddos -- Madelyn and Tucker. Mallary absolutely loves being a mom and often writes about the need to find harmony when juggling motherhood and work. Mallary is the Assistant Director of the Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas at the University of Texas at Austin, where she manages the Center's various programs related to distance learning, freedom of expression, and digital journalism. Previously, she was Executive Director of Images & Voices of Hope and Managing Editor of The Poynter Institute’s media news site, Mallary grew up outside of Boston and graduated from Providence College in Rhode Island. In 2015, she received a certificate in nonprofit management from Duke University. She now lives in beautiful Austin, Texas, with her kids, husband Troy and cat Clara. She's working on a memoir, slowly but surely. You can reach her at

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