The Oxford Comma Panic of 2011

In which a PR style guide sets off a series of impassioned discussions on the importance of the Oxford comma.

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  1. The University of Oxford online style guide that launched the rumor that the University had changed its stance on the Oxford comma...
  2. June 29, 2011 One of the stories reporting Oxford dropping the Oxford comma.
  3. June 30, 2011 Mary Elizabeth Williams responds in Salon.
    "The last time the nerd community was this cruelly betrayed, George Lucas was sitting at his desk, thinking, 'I shall call him Jar Jar.'"
  4. June 30, 2011 The response prompted the clarification that the cited style guide was relevant only to "press releases and internal communications" (anyone else think that an odd pairing?) in a now-inaccessible article in the San Jose Mercury News (Why? We don't know). The Oxford University Press, minders of Hart's Rules (i.e., The "real" Oxford style guide), confirms via blog post that it remains steadfast in its commitment to "retain or impose" the Oxford comma....
  5. June 30, 2011 Linda Holmes of NPR, who admits that she uses the Oxford comma "at home," but is required to drop it at work (NPR uses AP style): "Whether the serial comma is used is usually not a big deal[...] But when it matters, it really matters."
  6. April 19, 2012 And the piece that prompted me to compile this story... posted nearly a year later...
  7. Interwebs votes yes....
  8. So, Oxford comma haters (which is pretty much all of you) - looks like the interwebs say otherwise: