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Afternoon Reading List 05.23.13

A piece by Slates Matthew J.X. Malady raises an interesting question: what if apostrophes werent actually necessary? Only in use to signify omitted letters since the 16th century and in possessives since the 17th, apostrophes history may be beginning to draw to a close. The story cites multiple writers and scholars who have abandoned the punctuation mark, which Malady calls  an “uncouth bacilli,” and the language used by bloggers and new media, which largely omits apostrophes. The piece also mentions John Richards, founder of the Apostrophe Protection Society, who has been set on keeping the punctuation mark alive.

Roll Call‘s John Gramlich reports that a bipartisan group of lawmakers led by Reps. Ted Poe (R-Texas) and John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) announced Wednesday that there is growing support for a “media shield” bill that would protect journalists from revealing their sources via a new judicial process. The legislation comes as a response to the Justice Departments seizure of two months of phone records of reporters with the Associated Press and Fox News. Poe said the actions of the DOJ remind him of “the old Soviet-style tactics of spying on the press.”

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