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actuallery's avatar

Do people "over use" "double quotes" more than is "necessary"?

Asked by actuallery (607points) August 29th, 2010

I find that I do tend to over use the double quotes more than is necessary but only to “emphasise” a word or phrase. Sometimes I feel a bit “guilty” or “uneducated” doing so.

What are your “thoughts” and “opinions”?

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19 Answers

rebbel's avatar


lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I love them and like to be fancy “that” way ;)

lillycoyote's avatar

No, “some” people might, but I use them only when “necessary,” if you know what I mean.

I do tend to use them a lot, maybe too much.

deni's avatar

I have noticed this a few times but I actually think it’s really funny when people do it in a joking way because then you’re like “wait, what does he actually mean by ‘i’ve always wanted an “alligator”’? or “i went to the “gym” today”.....probably just me but i’m cracking up right now

im embarrassed

llewis's avatar

“I” haven’t noticed it, but I (have) noticed people using (parentheses) as (accents), when they are (supposed) to be almost the (opposite).

BarnacleBill's avatar

Sometimes quotes are used to signify a double entendre. Like saying “I went to the ‘gym’ today” when the only “workout” he got was screwing the boss’ wife.

jeffgoldblumsprivatefacilities's avatar

Indeed they do. There are much better ways of showing one’s intended emphasis.

CMaz's avatar

THAT, I mean “that” is always a “good” way to “mean,” “you know what I mean”. Without having to “explain” “it”.

DominicX's avatar

It isn’t really used for emphasis; it’s used to show that the word or phrase in quotes is not being used literally or conventionally. Picture the phrase “so-called” before the usage of the quotes.

Seaofclouds's avatar

@DominicX The phrase “so-called” is exactly how I think of quotes when they aren’t being used for an actual quote. I do think people tend to use them more than necessary these days.

Austinlad's avatar

Yes, too much, and as a writer and lover of language, I hate it. Faster than proverbial crap through a goose do such gestural and verbal clich├ęs stolen from TV, movies and the Internet race through our culture, evolving from quasi-jokes to irony and soon then to, though usually not soon enough, oblivion, along the way short-circuiting and discounting traditional written, verbal and visual communication.

Cruiser's avatar

We are all “friends” here and can do away with all the “formality” normally assigned to published works of prose. Double “quote” away “I say” and even bold a time or 2 or “two”!

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

I think people quite often use them improperly. I only use them when I am quoting from another person’s text or speech, to signify as in the statements below, or when I use a word creatively, or in an unusual but relevant way as in Cruiser’s remark above. I think the way they were often used in the early 20th century simply to emphasize a word, is now archaic. If the word is used in its common context, there is no need to use quotes. If one wishes to emphasize a word, they should use italics or bold, or both. In handwritten letters, these words were often underlined.

My pet peeve is the improper use of the apostrophied “s” as a plural rather than a possessive and vice-versa. I’ve seen this all over the net in corporate ads, in print ads and even business signs on the street, as in “Joes Stone Crab’s.” I think that alone says a lot about someone’s writing skills, or a company’s proof/editing skills. The use of “it’s” and “its” is often confused, as well. But unless somebody is writing professionally, I usually try keep my smarmy, pedantic thoughts to myself as nobody is perfect as typos are rampant in comments sections due to restricted editing times and sticky keyboards..

My weakness is the use, overuse, and underuse of the comma. I am continuously confused about the rules concerning this.

DominicX's avatar


Yeah, you do use a lot of commas. :P My pet peeve is the use of a comma where a semicolon is more appropriate. Too many people don’t know how to use a semicolon.

rebbel's avatar

Have a look at this video of the British show QI in which they discuss the apostrophe.
You’ll like it, i think.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

@DominicX Yeah, you noticed, huh? lol. At my age, I really should look up commas, colons and semi-colons and get it all right once and for all. I think I’ll do that tonight. Thanks.

@rebbel Thanks, I’ll do that.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

Yes, I over use them. My real fetish, however, is for commas and semicolons; I do it to drive people crazy.

Hawkeye's avatar


Adagio's avatar

Definitely not me, I would much rather use italics for emphasis or if I want to emphasise something very strongly I use bold… I only use ” for speech, probably because that is what I was taught at primary school.

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