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where to use small caps If you set acronyms in regular all caps, their visual presence is unnecessarily overwhelming. One standard and practical place to use small caps is in acronyms such as fbi, nrc, cbs, or simm. Traditionally, “a.m.” and “p.m.” are set with small caps. If you were taught to type on a typewriter (or if you were taught on a keyboard by someone who was taught on a typewriter), you probably learned to set there abbreviations in all caps because there were no small caps on typewriters. But now that you have the capability, you can and should set them properly.

Harriet, an FBI agent, turned on CNN to get the dirt on the CIA before going to bed at 9:30 P.M. Harriet, an fbi agent, turned on cnn to get the dirt on the cia before going to bed at 9:30 p.m. The capital letters in the middle of the sentence call too much attention to themselves. Notice how the small caps blend in with the text. The capital letters for p.m. are much too large—the abbreviation is not that important.

small caps // 79

Rules of Typography  

Typographic Workbook

Rules of Typography  

Typographic Workbook

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