Rising Clyde House Style Guide


  1. WRITTEN CONTENT

Tone:

Articles written for Rising Clyde should adopt a more informal, conversational tone, but not at the expense of clarity and correctness. No one’s own unique voice should be diminished, but anyone should be able to read two articles from Rising Clyde and be able to tell that they belong to us. Concise Articles with snappy intros, meaning there’s no room for meandering. Try to limit articles and news features to a single page on the website. Avoid jargon, vagueness, and try to omit needless words.

Specific Sections:

News (350 – 450 words).

  • When writing news, ensure to adopt a neutral stance on all issues, even those that affect climate change positively. 
  • Keep speculation to a minimum and let quotes and testimonies apply analysis to the article’s subject. 
  • Aim for Scottish / UK news first and foremost, unless it’s a big story. 
  • Always release news and accompanying multimedia together. 

Features: (max 1000 – 1200 words)

  • Keep our readers in mind. Not all our readers will be that knowledgeable on matters pertaining to climate change, so provide pertinent background information. 
  • Avoid pronoun use like I and WE. Unless it’s an opinion, you can use these pronouns if it’s the style of the piece. Don’t put OPINION in the title. TBC. 
  • Multimedia can be published separately. Max 3 weeks.  
  • A focus on Glasgow first, then Scotland, then further afield. This is just to please BIG RICK more than anything, but try to keep it in mind when considering the scope of articles. Evergreen pieces offer more fluidity. 

General Notes:

Post on social media once the piece is up, but also check the rota. Try to make a TikTok or more video content if possible. At the moment, video content and interactive pieces are low, but hopefully this can pick up as we get into a rhythm. 

  1. HOUSE STYLE

Article Titles, Headlines, and Subheadings:

  • For article titles, each major word should be in uppercase.
  • Shouldn’t use the serial comma. 
  • Use the ampersand symbol in place of “and”.where appropriate (attribution between two objects). For example, ‘features, news & blogs’ is good. 
  • All subheadings in bold, of which the initial word should be in uppercase.

Headline / Subheading / Content Font and Sizing:

  • Use the default font provided on WordPress. It is no Helvetica, but a lot easier to use than messing about trying to implement a new one. 

HOWEVER…

  • When drafting articles, write them in Helvetica.
  • Headlines should be at size 24, and in bold. 
  • Subheadings should be at size 12, and in bold.
  • The text should be size 12.
  • For photo captions, use the font option SMALL. 

Write the article in this style and copy + paste into WordPress. The necessary changes should occur automatically, with the size of body text appearing as DEFAULT. Copy it across in sections as well, photos and paragraphs in a new block each. 

Punctuation and Grammar :

  • “a” or “an” before H – use “an” before a word with a silent H such as “an heir” or “an honest person”.
  • Do not use full points in abbreviations, or spaces between initials:  mph, 4am, M&S etc.
  • Use all capitals if an abbreviation is an initialism (pronounced as the individual letters): BBC, US, VAT. 
  • For acronyms (pronounced as one word) spell the initial capital: Nasa, Unicef etc.
  • If you are using an abbreviation or acronym throughout a piece, put it in brackets when it is first mentioned:  dissociative identity disorder (DID), seasonal affective disorder (Sad).
  • Use ‘n dash’ –  (never ‘m dash’ — or hyphens – for a sub clause)

Company and publication names:

Should capitalise the names of companies according to each companies preference unless they begin a sentence, in which case they must be capitalised. Do not capitalise or otherwise emphasise the definite article before the name of a publication – even the New York Times.

Quotes:

  • Use double quotation marks, not single. 
  • Single quotation marks could be used inside, as in: “He told me that she said ‘no way’ but I didn’t believe him”
  • Punctuation goes inside quotes “like this.”
  • Introduce quotes with a colon “like this,” with no italics. 

Numbers:

  • Write them out below ten, use numerals after that. (maybe make exceptions if in the same sentence and it looks weird). 
  • Never start a sentence with a numeral – write it out if that happens. 
  • Always numerals if in the context of a recipe.
  • Write PERCENT out as one word, don’t use the symbol. 
  • Always use decimals. 

When writing out numbers, write: 2000, and not 2,000. BUT, write 200,000, and not 200000.

  1. ADDITIONAL FEATURES

Photos:

  • All photos must be captioned. This includes a description of the photo, and a copyright credit if needed. This is specified by writing “Photograph: XXXX”. 
  • ALWAYS put in brackets. 
  • Use stock photos as a last resource. Use your own photos if possible, if not find a photo that is appropriate and that can be used and credited without copyright concern. 
  • Upload the featured photo to Google Photos, and select the Auto filter. Then redownload or input from there, to ensure all photos have the same look about them.
  • We have a Getty image plug-in, but these can’t be used in the feature place.  

 Lists:

  • If any item in a list forms a complete sentence, all the items should each begin with a capital letter and end with a punctuation mark.
  • If no items in an unordered list form a complete sentence, skip the capitalization and terminal punctuation.
  • If the items in the list complete an unfinished introductory sentence, end all but the last item with a semicolon, add an “and” before the final item, and finish off with terminal punctuation.

Linking:

  • Choose link text that directly indicates the nature of the linked document, photo, or video. Preferably have shorter links to long ones.
  • Instead of inserting full web links, hyperlink an appropriate word that links to the website you are referencing.

For our content to be fully accessible, each illustrative image used should have an accompanying attribute text that describes the images for those who cannot see it.