Use of Terms A - Z

Answer your editorial questions through this list of commonly used terms. You will find everything from definitions to using hyphens.

Visual Style Guides

Build a cohesive brand by using consistent colors, fonts, and correct logo placement.

Program Content Guides

Make sure you have this program-specific context and accurate terminology when writing for a specific MC&FP program.

Logos

Download the logos for MC&FP and related programs.

 

Announcements

Editorial Style Update

guardian — An individual who serves in the U.S. Space Force is a guardian. The plural form is guardians. Lowercase in all uses.

Editorial Style Update

Department of Defense — “U.S. Department of Defense” and “Department of Defense” refer to the proper name and legal entity of this cabinet-level government department. Reserve these for use in formal and official correspondence, documents, reports and testimony. In all other cases, use “Defense Department” on first reference.

The correct acronym for “Defense Department” is “DOD” with an uppercase “O” in the center; use on second reference after “Defense Department” or when the stand-alone acronym suffices depending upon use. Do NOT use “DoD.”

Editorial Style Update

first lady – Capitalize as a formal title before a name. Lowercase in other uses. With regard to First Lady Dr. Jill Biden, use her academic title, Dr., as opposed to Ms. or Mrs.

secretary of defense – Capitalize as a formal title before a name. Lowercase in other uses. With regard to the secretary of defense under President Biden, always use Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III. Do not use Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III.

Editorial Style Update

Contractors are required to adhere to all Department of Defense policies, instructions and guidance surrounding military service uniforms and personal appearance regulations. This guide provides standard sources containing up-to-date information. Download Military Service Uniform Guidance

Editorial Style Update

Use “flyer” versus “flier” for those who fly and for handbills: She is a frequent flyer; the flyers showcase installation events. Use flier in “take a flier,” which means to take a big risk. For more style guidance, see our style guide or the AP Stylebook.

Editorial Style Update

Use the percent symbol – % – when pairing with numerals instead of spelling out “percent.” For more style guidance, see our style guide or the AP Stylebook.

MC&FP Editorial Style Update

Abbreviation/acronyms are acceptable on second reference. Spell out Exceptional Family Member Program on first reference, for example. For all other references, use EFMP.

MC&FP Editorial Style Update

Use “free” when the target audience is the military community (service members and family members) but use “no cost” when the audience is leadership. The only exception to the rule is for Facebook: Due to its algorithms, use either “no cost” or use a variation of “take advantage of your benefit.”

MC&FP Editorial Style Update

Do not use “please” in article content, social media or collateral material. The MC&FP Outreach team will have to clear any exceptions to the rule.

MC&FP Editorial Style Update

Spell out Department of Defense on first reference. It is then acceptable to use DOD.