NLGJA Stylebook: “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”

NLGJA’s Stylebook Supplement on LGBT Terminology is intended to complement the prose stylebooks of individual publications, as well as the Associated Press stylebook, the leading stylebook in U.S. newsrooms.

It reflects the association’s mission of inclusive coverage of LGBT people and includes entries on words and phrases that have become common. The Stylebook Supplement was translated into Spanish in 2005.

Periodically, we’ll be spotlighting some of the major entries.

Here’s our “don’t ask, don’t tell” entry:

don’t ask, don’t tell: Shorthand for “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, Don’t Pursue, Don’t Harass,” the military policy on gay men, lesbians and bisexuals. Under the policy, instituted in 1993, the military is not to ask service members about their sexual orientation, service members are not to tell others about their orientation, and the military is not to pursue rumors about members’ sexual orientation. The shorthand is acceptable in headlines, but in text the full phrase adds balance.

We look forward to your comments!

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