eg, etc and ie

These Latin abbreviations can cause readability problems.

  • In external facing communications, avoid using abbreviations such as ‘eg’, ‘ie’, and ‘etc’. As well as slowing readers down, ‘eg’ can sometimes be read aloud as ‘egg’ by screen reading software.
  • Instead of ‘eg’ use: for example, for instance, such as, like or including.
  • ‘etc’ - avoid using.
  • ‘ie’ - used to clarify a sentence. Rewrite the sentence where possible to avoid the need to use it. If that isn’t possible, use an alternative such as meaning or that is.

ellipses - a series of dots (…)

  • Only use 3 dots.
  • Don’t add an extra dot if a new sentence follows them.
  • Following a word, do not have a space, eg and suddenly…
  • Before a word, include a space, eg it was finished… or so he thought.

em and en dashes

See Dashes, Hyphens


  • With hyphen

email addresses

See Addresses