Editors Won’t Let It Be When It Comes to ‘the’ or ‘The’

The Beatles

“The Beatles once sang, “Have you heard the word is love?” In a Wikipedia war raging around the group, the word is “the.” For some eight years, editors at the online encyclopedia have been debating whether the article “the” should be uppercased when referring to the band. Is it “the” Beatles or “The” Beatles?

The lowercase faction says the Wikipedia manual of style and external style guides are on its side. The uppercase faction says that trademarks should be capitalized and that the official Beatles website uses an uppercase definite article.

The dispute has become so contentious that some Wikipedia editors have been banned from participating. “Discussions on this page may escalate into heated debate,” warns the internal “Talk” page where editors discuss changes to the Beatles entry.” (WSJ.com)

One thought on “Editors Won’t Let It Be When It Comes to ‘the’ or ‘The’

  1. I’d have to weigh in for capital “The”. What bugs me more, though is groups that keep having a gratuitous “the” added to their actual name in the press, Indigo Girls for example.


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