Style Guide

Last updated: March 2022

Welcome to the Global Voices Style Guide. This is a reference document for all authors, translators, and editors to help the community ensure high editorial standards across the entire GV site.

We welcome feedback on this document and our editorial procedures! If you'd like to make comments or suggestions, please use this open Google Doc version of our Style Guide, which explains our procedure for collecting and discussing new ideas.

Other important documents:

  • Posting Guide: Technical information about creating posts including text formatting styles and instructions for dealing with images and video.
  • Lingua Translators GuideTechnical information about using the Lingua system to translate posts.
  • Translation Managers Guide: Information about administrating a Lingua site.

If you are not yet a Global Voices contributor please see the Get Involved page to learn how to become an author or translator.

Introduction

This is a live document that provides a set of standards to ensure that GV content is consistent and clear for our readers and translators.

Points to consider:

  • Consistently high editorial standards add credibility to our content.
  • Many in our audience are reading content that is not their primary language.
  • Consistency allows our Lingua team to translate posts into other languages seamlessly.

GV content is created, edited and published within the GV WordPress Content Management System.

GV Editorial Code

This code was drafted and endorsed by the Global Voices Community on Aug. 5, 2013. All GV stories should conform as much as possible to this code.

  • Be as accurate as possible.
  • Never plagiarize.
    • Plagiarism is the stealing of another author’s language, thoughts, and ideas, and passing them off as one’s own. It is considered a serious breach of journalistic ethics.
    • Global Voices has a zero-tolerance policy for plagiarism. If a post is found to include plagiarized language, it may be removed from the site and its author might be asked to stop writing for Global Voices.
    • As a site that engages mostly in “second-hand reporting” — i.e. our stories are often aggregations of publicly available information — it is especially important that excerpts of articles or social media posts are credited to their original author.
    • You should always attribute and link to the sources you have quoted or paraphrased in your story. When in doubt, seek guidance from your editor or other newsroom staff about your process of reporting and assembling the story.
  • Be true to GV values. (1)
    • Avoid stereotyping by race, gender, age, religion, ethnicity, geography, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance or social status.
    • Be aware of the labels you attach to individuals, people and groups. Question terms, names, photos or practices used in other media and by governments – only use labels that are in line with our code and values.
    • Build community and encourage meaningful conversation through our reporting.
  • Avoid conflicts of interest, real or perceived.
    • Be transparent and disclose unavoidable conflicts.
    • Distinguish between advocacy and news reporting. Analysis and commentary should be labeled and not misrepresent fact or context. (2)
    • Distinguish news from promotional material. Do not blur the lines between the two.
    • Be honest; never misrepresent the relative size, importance or popularity of initiatives you are associated with.
  • Minimize harm in your reporting.
    • Use special sensitivity when dealing with children and photos of children. (3)
    • Be judicious about naming criminal suspects before the formal filing of charges.
    • Recognize that gathering and reporting information may cause harm to certain subjects and sources. Show compassion and responsibility for those who may be affected adversely in your reporting.
    • Put the safety of sources and subjects above any other consideration, suggest anonymity when you are concerned that revealing their identity could lead to harm.
    • Be cautious about identifying juvenile suspects or victims of sex crimes. Be aware that identifying and/or naming juvenile suspects or victims of sex crimes is illegal in some countries.
    • Be responsible when reporting on stories related to suicide. (4)
    • Be aware that people are ostracized for their beliefs and can even be persecuted for their beliefs or lifestyle in parts of the world. Be cautious in your language that describes a person’s relationship to their belief system, religious, political or otherwise.

(1) We believe in free speech, and in bridging the gulfs that divide people.

(2) Coverage on Global Voices Advocacy is understood to be “labeled” as fact-based reporting that prioritizes the protection of human rights online.

(3) Read the UNICEF Reporting on Children Guidelines.

(4) Add this note to GV stories that deal with suicide.

GV Editorial code inspired and produced from the SPJ Code of Ethics.

GV Mission

All GV stories should support the mission of Global Voices as much as possible.

We work to find the most compelling and important stories coming from marginalized and misrepresented communities. We speak out against online censorship and support new ways for people to gain access to the internet.

Style guide

Abbreviations

Use periods in abbreviations as you prefer — FBI and F.B.I., Dr and Dr. — but remain consistent. 

Capitalization

In general, avoid using initial capitals. There are cases where it is necessary, as listed here. If it is not listed here, check with the subeditors, or take a decision and remain consistent through the piece. 

Proper nouns

Nouns that are a unique identifier for a place, a person, or thing should begin with a capital letter.

Examples:

John, Noor, Maria, India, Santiago, British Petroleum, Facebook, Amazon River, Western Europe

Common nouns that are part of names

Capitalize the first letter of a common noun when it is singular, but not when it is plural. Exception: when it is a title.

Examples: 

The Mississippi River, the Delaware River, but the Mississippi and Delaware rivers 

President Obama, President Erdoğan, Presidents Obama and Erdoğan

Titles

Capitalize titles when used immediately before a name.

Examples: 

President Putin, but the president of Russia, Vladimir Putin. 

Finance Minister S. Jaishankar, but S.Jaishankar, the finance minister

Job descriptions remain in lowercase.

Example: 

Vice president of accounting, John Smith, told the police there had been no signs of criminal activity. 

Pride

Capitalize Pride when referring to LGBTQ+ Pride month or Pride events (events or organizations honoring LGBTQ+ communities) always capitalize Pride. 

Example:

It is Pride month. He went to the Pride festival. Was there a Pride parade?

Black

GV prefers to capitalize the first letter of the adjective Black when it is used to refer to people of African origin. This is to reflect the political substance behind the term. However, we understand that the term has different values in different contexts and are willing to leave it to the author’s discretion, based on their reasoning. The exception is when referring to black music/art.

Example: 

The show highlighted Black activists who had made a difference in the community. 

Indigenous

The word Indigenous always begins with a capital letter. By extension, also capitalize Aborigine and Aboriginal. Wherever possible we prefer to use the name of the specific community. We can also refer to the Aboriginal people of Australia as the First Nations or the First Peoples.

Example:

The Navajo woman is a proud advocate for Indigenous rights.

COVID-19

COVID-19 should be capitalized. When referring to the coronavirus, avoid using “new” or “novel” as the virus has been around for over one year. COVID is acceptable on second mention. When discussing variants, please use the proper WHO-approved names (Alpha, Delta, Omicron, etc.). We do not want to create associations between variants and the locations where they originated as this can lead to discrimination and stereotypes. 

See also our section on COVID-19.

Internet

Do not capitalize the word “internet.”

Departments, governments

On the first mention, capitalize the first letters of governments, ministries, departments, etc., but on the second reference simply use the common noun in lowercase.

Examples:

The Government of India announced a new plan for farm subsidies. Farmers unions were outspoken in their stance against the government.

The Ministry of Education released the first of a series of polls on literacy. When asked for access to the data, the ministry refused.

Headings

See Formatting

Directions

When referring to a compass direction, use lowercase for north, south, east, west, northeast, southwest, etc. 

In general, use lowercase for north, south, northeast, northern, etc., when they indicate compass direction; capitalize these words when they designate regions. When referring to a region, use capital letters.

Examples:

West Africa, Southeast Asia 

In the west of Zimbabwe, in western Cuba

The northeast of the country remains under military control.

When referring to a part of a nation, states/provinces or cities, use lowercase unless it’s part of a proper name or used to reference political division.

Examples: 

northern Chile, eastern Kenya, the western Philippines, southern India, the Lower East Side of New York

But: Northern Ireland, South Korea

When in doubt, look it up in either the Oxford English Dictionary or Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary

Capitalize West and Western when referring to the cultural and political region that is the Western Hemisphere and Europe, and when referring to the Old West, the Western genre of fiction and cinema, and the 19th century US frontier.

See also our section on sports for information on capitalizing team names and coaches.

Foreign words

Use italics for foreign words that are not included in either the Oxford English Dictionary or Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary. Consider explaining the meaning of the word in parentheses as well. Do not use quotation marks for foreign words.

Proper nouns

People

Keep the original spelling, including accents, on all people’s names, regardless of language or geographic origin.

Examples:

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Pedro Sánchez, Aleksandar Vučić

Use discretion with regard to the order of names. Be sensitive to local customs, as well as to acceptable exceptions. Keep in mind these specific regional conventions.

In Japan, the family name comes first and the given name comes second (Abe Shinzo not Shinzo Abe). For Japanese people who are well known internationally, such as Banana Yoshimoto and Haruki Murakami, the Western order of the first name followed by last may be used.

In parts of South Asia, Southeast Asia, and East Africa, it is acceptable to refer to people’s first names. Additionally, some people only have a single name, so be mindful of local customs.

Example:

In an interview regarding cybercrime, Wibisono described how cyber troops had infiltrated Indonesian Twitter spaces.

Though the local custom in Hungary is family name followed by given name (“Orbán Victor” is how Hungarian media usually refers to the country’s prime minister), first name followed by family name is acceptable.

Places

Use an established English name when available (Warsaw not Warszawa, Prague not Praha), but consider exceptions (São Paulo is acceptable instead of Sao Paulo). Be sensitive about politicized names

Bombay, instead of Mumbai, could be acceptable, but carries a specific political context. Similarly, Taiwan compared to the Chinese Taipei or Republic of China.

Generally, use the UN list of member states for countries’ names, but GV also recognizes some exceptions like Taiwan. Please see our full country and territory index in this document for more information.

Consult Wikipedia in English for names of states, provinces, cities, and neighborhoods.

Political parties and social movements

On a first reference, spell out the English translation of a party/movement, and follow it with the original name in quotes and original acronym if applicable, both in parenthesis. On a second reference, it is acceptable to use the original acronym, if available. Use the original name if there is no acronym. In a few cases (such as names in Chinese, which necessarily won’t have an original acronym), using the English acronym is acceptable.

Example: 

First reference: The Workers’ Party (“Partido dos Trabalhadores” in Portuguese, known by its acronym PT).
Second reference: PT

First reference: The Panhellenic Socialist Movement (“Πανελλήνιο Σοσιαλιστικό Κίνημα,” in Greek, known by its acronym PASOK).
Second reference: PASOK

However, bear in mind that acronyms can be tricky for a reader to remember, especially one that isn't familiar with the particular region. Instead of using an acronym, consider referring to the organization by a general word. 

Example:

The Partisan Socialist Party of Pangea (PSPP) released a statement condemning the verdict. PSPP said they will appeal as soon as possible.

It's easier for a reader if it's written like this: 

The Partisan Socialist Party of Pangea released a statement condemning the verdict. The party said they will appeal as soon as possible.

Indicating language changes

Global Voices in English no longer uses language codes to signal when a hyperlink goes to a non-English-language website. Instead, we should:

  • incorporate into the story any observations about language when necessary (for example, “Korean-language newspaper” or “in this Catalan-language interview”), while being careful not to overload the post with these details
  • make sure to add all the language tags relevant to a post
  • use links to webpages in the language of the story as much as possible. For translations, replace as many as possible that are in the original language with links in the language of the translation.

Formatting

Content partnership notices

Global Voices has partner contentship agreements with hundreds of other outlets and media partners. When reposting content from a partner, always include the following notice at the top of the article, under the featured image. 

This post first appeared in [name of partner, link to original article] on [date]. This edited version is being republished on Global Voices under a content partnership agreement.

Subheadings

Subheadings should be wrapped in “Headline 3″ case. You only need to capitalize proper nouns in section subheadings.

We avoid using bold and italics to create emphasis in posts unless the emphasis is part of an original quote. 

Use italics for scientific names and foreign words not in the Merriam Webster or the Oxford English dictionaries.

In an interview, the questions should be in bold, while the answers remain in normal text.

Headline Formatting

Headlines should only capitalize the first letter of the first word, and any proper nouns. Our headlines should offer a comprehensive and catchy picture of what the story is about. It’s important to attract readers through a headline, while avoiding clickbait and remaining true to the story and the truth.

Be sure to include a location (country, region, city, etc.) that is familiar to most readers. 

Example:

Oil spill in the Peruvian Amazon first poisons children, then employs them

Explain any elements that readers might not be familiar with. 

Example:

China detains star news anchor Rui Chenggang amid widening anti-corruption campaign

Explains why this is relevant through descriptive language like “star” and gives some context about why this is happening a “widening anti-corruption campaign”

Always use single quotes when quoting word-for-word from elements of the post. 

Example

Thailand's military junta cements its power with ‘undemocratic’ interim constitution

Only in headlines, use the % symbol instead of spelling out “percent.”

Example:

Jerusalem Christians: ‘We shrunk from 20% to 2% of population due to Israeli violence’

Interview Format

For interview articles that feature a conversation between a GVer and source, see this example.

These articles should have an introduction explaining the interview topic that sets the context of why this person is being interviewed. The interview questions should be in bold and full names should be used in the first question and answer. After the first question/answer, initials are acceptable. 

Example:

Oiwan Lam: Several media outlets have described the editing debates between mainland Chinese and Hong Kong Wikipedians as a war. Do you agree with the ‘war’ metaphor?

Mainland Chinese Editor: This is not a war between Hong Kong and mainland Chinese Wikipedia users. The incident is caused by a prolonged violation of community rules by some users. 

OL: How long has this  conflict wikipedia been occuring?

MCE: It’s been happening for a long time as many of the topics we discuss are quite controversial and can draw some strong reactions out of people. 

Names 

Media outlets

Use regular case for names of media outlets. Do not use italics, bold, or quotation marks for media or blogs.

For non-English media names:

For Latin scripts, use the original name on all references. Follow the first reference with an English translation in parenthesis and in quotes if appropriate.

From then on, use the original name.

Example:

According to Brazilian news site Ponte (meaning “Bridge” in Portuguese),

For non-Latin scripts, use a transliteration on all references. On the first reference, follow with the original name in parenthesis and, when appropriate, an English translation.

Example:

According to Greek newspaper I Kathimerini (Η Καθημερινή, meaning “the daily” in Greek).

Of works (books, movies, etc.)

Titles of articles, reports, books, photographs, videos, films, paintings, songs, or statues should be enclosed in either single or double quotation marks, depending on your regional style, on all references. Whatever you choose, be consistent throughout.

Names of media outlets, blogs, social media pages or channels, apps, software, and games (be them video, online or analog games): use regular sentence case, no quotes.

Do not use italics for either.

Examples:

In a post titled ‘Why Whales?’ on his blog The Pequod, Ishmael explains why he decided to go to sea. The book “4001” lifts the lid on the world of South Korean politics

For works in a non-English language, follow the explanation in the section “Foreign words” and provide an English translation in parenthesis and in quotation marks.

Also see foreign words, capitalization, sports.

Numbers

Numbers: In general, numbers zero to nine should be spelled out, with the exception of ages, dates, and units of measurement. Numbers that begin a sentence are always spelled out.

Examples: 

Bloggers claim five people were killed.

Police reported that 50 people were injured in the explosion.

Seventy people have signed the petition so far.

Use a comma as a thousands separator and a period (full stop) as a decimal separator:

Examples: 

100,000.89 (one hundred thousand point eight nine)

For figures above 999,999, write out the word “million” after the initial numbers:

Examples:

More than 5 million people were cut off.

Nearly 540 billion insects live on the planet.

Generally, ordinal numbers should follow the same pattern as cardinal numbers; spell out until ninth, and use numerals for higher numbers:

Examples: 

It was the fifth time Gaddafi had spoken to his people.

It was the 15th time Gaddafi had spoken to his people.

Use a period and numerals to indicate decimal amounts. Decimalization should not exceed two places, unless there are special circumstances. For amounts less than 1, use the numeral zero before the decimal points.

Examples: 

The bridge had been under construction for 4.5 years. 

Experts predict they only had a 0.49 percent chance of success.

The treatment was effective 99.9 percent of the time

Dates

Use the format MONTH-DATE in all cases. Always use cardinal numbers. Always prefer a specific date over a relative date so that the reader can locate the information in time whenever they read the piece.

Examples:

The museum closed on February 25.

The foundation was launched on July 18, 2020.

NOT: Two hikers were lost in the Himalayan foothills last Thursday.

When referring to a range of dates:

From 1950 to 1955

Between 1950 and 1955

In the period 1950–1955 [en dash]

For decades, include the entire year and drop any apostrophes:

Example:

In the 1980s, jogging was considered cool.

Time

When mentioning times, be sure to mention that times are in local time.

Use the following format for times:

Example:

The police arrived at 2:30 p.m.

The police left at 3 p.m.

See also our section on sports.

Units of measurement

Use figures for all units of measurement, such as dimensions, weight, and volume.

Use the metric system for all units. If you quote a source that mentions the imperial system, provide a conversion in the metric system. It is acceptable to abbreviate units (km instead of kilometers; kg instead of kilos).

Examples:

The town is 5 km away from the border. 

A 5-cm snowfall

Currency

Use the three-letter ISO 4217 codes for every currency, since symbols might not exist for all of them, and several currencies use the same symbol (pesos and dollars). The code precedes the amount, followed by a space and the digits. As far as possible use decimals to denote fractions of the currency. Also, always convert the amount to US dollars and place the conversion in brackets.

Examples:

The fund raised USD 45 billion.

This works out to a price of INR 357.85 (about USD 4.39) per unit.

With a monthly salary of EUR 200 (USD 160), the workers barely make a living wage.

Age

When is it relevant to include age? We ask that you take a moment to consider why you feel a person’s age is important and must be mentioned. We would like to avoid promoting ageism or invading a person’s privacy. We expect it to be more relevant in stories related to crime, sentences, and death. Age can also be referenced in a more general way. 

If you do reference a specific age, remember to always use figures, except when it begins a sentence. Use hyphens for ages expressed as adjectives.

Example: 

The poet, in her fifties, comes from a family of ardent political activists. 

The 14-year-old girl won an Olympic gold medal for her skateboarding routine. The runner-up was 13 years old.

Sports scores

While generally, we prefer to spell out numbers one to nine and use digits for numbers 10 and greater, when referencing sports scores, we use numerals separated by an en-dash. 

Example:

Chile beat Argentina 18–1 in the World Cup finals this year. 

See also our section on sports.

Percentage

Always use the word “percent,” not the symbol %, except in headlines.

 

Punctuation and Grammar

In general we ask that you are consistent across the article in how you use punctuation style, and we believe that less is more. Avoid writing lists like sentences, and use periods in abbreviations as you prefer — FBI and F.B.I., Dr and Dr. — but remain consistent. 

All punctuation except colons and semicolons ends inside quotation marks. 

Example: 

Facebook user Leslie-Ann Joan Boiselle called the piece “the beginning of the evolution of our liturgical music,” while Rubadiri Victor described the experience of hearing “O Creator” as “humanity attempting to talk to God.”

‘The king is passing’: Narrie Approo, Trinidad & Tobago's oldest Black Indian masquerader, dies at 94

Serial comma: This is a comma that comes after the last item before the word “and” in a list. It is also known as the Oxford comma and the Harvard comma. We encourage using serial commas to be sure there is no ambiguity, but if an editor feels it is very out of place, they may remove it.

Example:

Serial commas should be used to preserve meaning, style, and clarity. 

Dashes

There are three types of dashes: 

Hyphens (-) See hyphenation.

En-dashes (–) opt-dash

Em-dashes (—) opt-shift-dash

Em dashes are used to insert a break in the sentence, or a parenthetical phrase. Always put a space before and after the em-dash.

Examples: 

This video alone received five million views — not a trivial number given that Kazakhstan has a population of 18 million.

Azerbaijan also launched a joint military exercise with Pakistan and Turkey — a country competing with Iran in Middle East leadership — on September 1.

To convey a range, sports scores, or a relationship between two capitalized nouns, use an en dash without spaces on either side.

Examples: 

In the period 1950–1955 

Chile beat Argentina 18–1 in the World Cup finals this year.

India–Pakistan relations are at their lowest point in the decade.

Hyphenation

The main goal of hyphenation is to remove ambiguity. Try to avoid using them, but don’t hesitate if using them makes the meaning absolutely clear.

Examples:

He recovered rapidly from his bout of influenza.

She re-covered the roof of the house before winter fell.

When it comes to compound modifiers, take a minute to see if the meaning can be confused. If it is clear, then do not use the hyphen. 

Examples:

Small business owner” could be a business owner who is small, or an owner of a small business. A hyphen makes it very clear: small-business owner

First grade teacher” is fairly clear, since there’s not really any such thing as a “grade teacher,” it must refer to a teacher of first grade. 

When you find yourself needing more than two hyphens, rewrite the phrase. 

Examples:

Instead of a where-to-eat-in-Santiago guide, say a guide to where to eat in Santiago

When using “well” to modify an adjective before a noun, hyphenate it, but do not if it follows the noun. 

Examples:

It is a well-known fact that the sun rises in the east.

BUT

She is well known in the community.

Many such compound modifiers are not hyphenated when they come after the noun. When in doubt, return to the fundamental principle: is there ambiguity about the meaning? If so, use the hyphen. 

Examples:

She works full time, but he has a part-time job.

They walked hand-in-hand into the sunset.

Adjectives following “very” and adverbs that end in “-ly” do not need hyphens. 

Emphasis

Try to avoid this as it is editorializing, but when needed, use the format that is not used for direct quotations in the style you are using. So, if you use double quotes for quotations and titles, then use single quotes for emphasis, and vice versa. 

Quotation marks

See the section on quotations.

Active and passive voice

Most of the time, it is better to use active voice instead of passive voice in your writing. This way, we keep people as the focus of our posts and not the events that happen around them. In active voice, the agent of the action is also the subject of the sentence.

PASSIVE: The meeting was protested by angry residents.

The meeting is the subject of the sentence instead of the protesters.

ACTIVE: Angry residents protested the meeting.

The protesters are the subject.

One important exception to this rule is when writing a lead involving legal processes, crime, injuries or death. In these cases, sometimes we prefer passive voice in order to keep a person as the focus of the lead.

ACTIVE: National police arrested a prominent blogger known for his ruthless exposés of government waste on charges of tax fraud.

This is not bad, but the police share the spotlight with the blogger in this lead.

PASSIVE: A prominent blogger known for his ruthless exposés of government waste was arrested on charges of tax fraud.

The blogger is now the sole focus of the lead.

It all depends on who should be the main focus of a lead. Also always consider who you are centering in your sentences.

Be careful while using passive voice where violence has occured. Passive construction like “she was raped” moves the focus away from the perpetrator of the violence and onto the person on whom the violence was enacted. Try to rewrite the sentence in active voice, or, if that’s not possible, to rewrite it to remove the need for that phrasing. Sometimes it is not possible, and we understand that, but we ask that you think about it. See the Inclusive Language section for more information. 

Quotations

Use single or double quotation marks, as per UK or US style.

All punctuation except colons and semicolons ends inside quotation marks. 

Example:

Facebook user Leslie-Ann Joan Boiselle called the piece “the beginning of the evolution of our liturgical music,” while Rubadiri Victor described the experience of hearing “O Creator” as “humanity attempting to talk to God.”

‘The king is passing’: Narrie Approo, Trinidad & Tobago's oldest Black Indian masquerader, dies at 94

Use single quotation marks when quoting in a headline word-for-word from elements of the post. 

Example:

Thailand's military junta cements its power with ‘undemocratic’ interim constitution

Correcting Language in Quotes

Where text is a direct quote, it cannot be changed from the original. If the original text has a lot of spelling and grammar errors, you may want to indicate that the spelling mistakes are in the original with the word “sic” in square brackets.

Example:

These errors are reproducced [sic] exactly from the orignal [sic] source.

If you want to request a correction or update to a story that has already been published, you can request it via the Edit Request Form.

If the quote is from an oral interview or conversation, you can edit it, but ensure that the speaker approves of your changes. If it is a quote we have translated into English, then edit it, but if we are quoting a pre-existing translation then do not edit it. 

 

Spelling and Language

Global Voices English authors can use either US or UK English in their posts — just ensure that you are consistent in whatever spelling, grammar and punctuation style you use in a story. 

When faced with an idiom or a metaphor, try to choose the more commonly known version

Consider avoiding regional phrasal verbs, metaphors, or idiomatic expressions that might be difficult to translate — particularly for titles. While we appreciate pithy, sharp text, we also need to consider our global audience and ensure cross-cultural understanding.

Commonly misspelled words

Screenshot, not screen shot or screen grab. Also remember to use an article.

Climate crisis

When possible, Global Voices prefers the term climate crisis over climate change or global warming because it more accurately describes the wide scope of climate disasters that our world is facing right now.

Reporting on suicide

It's important that we report on suicide responsibly. Some suicide deaths may be newsworthy. However, the way media covers suicide can influence behavior negatively by contributing to contagion or positively by encouraging help-seeking. Think about reporting on suicide as a health issue, not just in response to a recent death.

Please add the following code to the very bottom of any post that touches on suicide:

<div class=”notes”>The number one cause for suicide is untreated depression. Depression is treatable and suicide is preventable. You can get help from confidential support lines for the suicidal and those in emotional crisis. Visit <a href=”https://www.befrienders.org”>Befrienders.org</a> to find a suicide prevention helpline in your country.</div>

Below is a quick ‘do and don't’ list put together by World Health Organisation which you should follow if your news piece discusses a suicide case.

Do…

  • Work closely with health authorities in presenting the facts
  • Refer to suicide as a “completed suicide,” not a successful one
  • Present only relevant data
  • Highlight alternatives to suicide
  • Provide information on helplines and community resources
  • Publicize risk indicators and warning signs

Don't…

  • Publish photographs or suicide notes
  • Report specific details of the method used
  • Give simplistic reasons
  • Glorify or sensationalize suicide
  • Use religious or cultural stereotypes
  • Apportion blame
  • Use the word “suicide” on the headline

We can also reduce the type of language that may increase suicide risk. Samaritans advises the use of phrases such as:

  • A suicide
  • Die by suicide
  • Take one’s own life
  • A suicide attempt
  • A completed suicide
  • Person at risk of suicide
  • Help prevent suicide

And avoiding phrases such as:

  • A successful suicide attempt
  • An unsuccessful suicide attempt
  • Commit suicide. (Suicide is now decriminalised so it is better not to talk about ‘committing suicide’ but use ‘take one's life’, or ‘die by suicide’ instead.)
  • Suicide victim
  • Just a cry for help
  • Suicide-prone person
  • Stop the spread/epidemic of suicide
  • Suicide ‘tourist’

Read more in the GV guide on Reporting Suicide Responsibly.

Inclusive language

At Global Voices we try to ensure that the language we use is as inclusive as possible. To that end, we follow this style in what we publish. 

When using the word victim, we ask you to consider its implications, since victimhood often demands that a person’s agency be removed. We don’t ban the term, but we do invite you to consider why it needs to be used. We ask you to explore alternative phrasing or look for neutral terms if possible. We would like you to extend this consideration to other pejorative terms like criminal, where, in particular contexts, it might be better to use a less condemnatory word.

Example:

“In this community, 25 percent of women are victims of rape” can be rewritten as “In this community, 25 percent of women have survived rape.”

Be careful while using passive voice where violence has occured. Passive construction like “she was raped” moves the focus away from the perpetrator of the violence and onto the person on whom the violence was enacted. Try to rewrite the sentence in active voice, or, if that’s not possible, to rewrite it to remove the need for that phrasing. Sometimes it is not possible, and we understand that, but we ask that you think about it. 

Example: 

An unknown attacker raped the 25-year-old doctoral student right outside her residence.

NOT

The 25-year-old doctoral student was raped right outside her residence

Avoid using the terms “male” and “female” as adjectives when referring to people. Female is a biological term. Woman/women is used to refer to anyone who identifies as a woman, while female technically refers to those with female biological organs, some of whom might not identify as women. Female is also a term used to refer to the biological sex of animals, and can thus be seen to detract from the humanity of women. The same applies for male as well. This is when we are referring to people, and not linguistic terms for people. 

Example:

The female pronoun is “she.”

The scholarship helps women athletes attend college.

We use LGBTQ+ to refer to members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer communities and beyond. While we recognize that there are many different style and acronyms to describe these communities, we prefer LGBTQ+  generally and LGBTQ when hyphenated, because we feel the term queer and the + symbol, are widely representative and effectively demonstrate inclusivity. We should edit all partner posts to conform to this standard. 

Example:

Members of the LGBTQ+ community took to the streets today to celebrate the 

victory. Community members celebrated the event by creating rainbow, 

LGBTQ-themed cakes and t-shirts.

Capitalize Pride when referring to LGBTQ+ Pride month or Pride events (events or organizations honoring LGBTQ+ communities) always capitalize Pride. 

Example:

It is Pride month. He went to the Pride festival. Was there a Pride parade?

GV prefers to capitalize the first letter of the adjective Black when it is used to refer to people of African origin. See here for more information. 

Try to use the United States/US and US citizen as opposed to America or American citizen, since the region of America includes all the nations of the continents of North and South America. Exceptions can be made regarding established expressions, and to describe certain aspects of art (American jazz, American studies, etc.)

See our section on COVID-19 for more. Please see our post on the term genocide and related ones such as “ethnic cleansing,’ “war crime,” and “massacre.”

COVID-19

The word should be capitalized. When referring to the coronavirus, avoid using “new” or “novel” as the virus has been around for over one year. COVID is acceptable on second mention. 

When discussing variants, please use the proper WHO-approved names (Alpha, Delta, Omicron, etc.). We do not want to create associations between variants and the locations where they originated as this can lead to discrimination and stereotypes. 

The term social distancing does not require a hyphen.

Superspreader is one word. Only use for events never apply to a person as it could draw the focus from the problem and onto the person or people and have knock on effects for communities.

When discussing vaccines, you do not need to include the type of vaccine unless relevant. Use the manufacturer’s name if needed to distinguish between vaccines: Pfizer, AstraZeneca, Moderna, Novavax, Sanofi, Sputnik V, Sinopharm, Sinovac, CanSino and Johnson & Johnson (J&J on second reference).

Trial phases

When referring to a specific vaccine trial phase, consider it a proper noun and use numerals. If you are not referring to a specific trial, leave it uncapitalized.

Example:

The University of Beijing finally released the Phase 3 trial results for the Sinovac COVID-19 vaccine last week. The government had hesitated to release data from the previous phases, but gave in due to widespread global pressure. 

Sports style

Track events

Write the units and event names for the first event mentioned, then condense when unambiguous. When giving the units in the name of the event, use a hyphen. Use commas (the 5,000m, the 10,000m).

Examples: 

First mention: the men’s 100-meter dash; then: the 100m or the men’s 100m

First mention: the women’s 4×400-meter relay; then: the 4x400m or the women’s 4x400m

First mention: the 4×400-meter relay; then: the 4x400m

Team Names

Team names should be capitalized; the sports themselves should not.

Sports scores

Use en-dashes for scores and win-loss records.

Example:

Chile beat Argentina 18–1 in the World Cup finals this year.

Times

Write out times for the first event mentioned, then abbreviate. Always use numerals.

Example:

First mention: 3 minutes, 26.1 seconds; then: 3:26.1

Head Coach/head coach

Capitalize when it comes before a name. Try not to use “of” in the title.

Confusing English translation in interviews 

When encountering an English translation of a quote or an interview (which happens often with  statements by officials), we owe it to our reader to provide easily understandable and readable English. There are several strategies to consider:

  • If you speak the original language, or know someone within GV who does, find the original and do an original GV translation.
  • Link to the source with the problematic English translation, but paraphrase the problematic translation.
  • Consider not using the quote at all and look instead for another statement 

If you have conducted the interview, feel free to edit for grammar and brevity, and also paraphrase when needed. It is good practice to warn your ahead interviewee that “Your interview will be edited for style and brevity” and add that in the story as well. 

References and Resources

  • Fight the Fog, an informal campaign by European Commission's translators urging writers and speakers to be as clear as possible in their original language.

 

Country names

This is GV’s official guide of names of countries and territories, including double names, adjectives, different spellings and preference when writing and editing for GV.

Useful links:

UN list 

Wikipedia article on sovereign states

Asia

Afghanistan. The adjective is Afghan. Afghanistan is a UN member state under an unrecognized government as of August 2021. 

Bahrain. The adjective is Bahraini.

Bangladesh. The adjective is Bangladeshi. Bangladesh, then known as East Bengal, was formerly one of two provinces in the Dominion of Pakistan after the British partitioned and renamed the territory within the former British India colony in 1947. Bangladesh asserted its independence from Pakistan through the War of Independence in 1971.

Bhutan. The adjective is Bhutanese. 

Brunei. The adjective is Bruneian.

Cambodia. The adjectives are Cambodian or Khmer. 

China. The adjective is Chinese. It is officially known as the People’s Republic of China (PRC). China has claimed sovereignty over two regions, Hong Kong and Macau, and heavily excerpts control in these regions. While it also claims sovereignty over Taiwan, Taiwan disputes this and it has no direct control over the nation. China has also annexed part of Mongolia and all of Tibet in what some see as an illegal occupation of a sovereign state

Hong Kong. The adjectives are Hong Konger, Hong Kongese. See China entry.

India. The adjective is Indian. India and Pakistan both claim the disputed territory of Kashmir in its entirety. While India controls one part, which it calls Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan controls another part named Azad Kashmir. Additionally, China currently administers Aksai Chin, a small part of the Ladakh region which India claims as part of Kashmir. See here for a full breakdown of the issue. 

Indonesia. The adjective is Indonesian. Indonesia has five autonomous provinces: Yogyakarta, Aceh, Jakarta, Papua, and West Papua. West Papua has been fighting to gain independence from indonesia since it was first incorporated into the Republic of Indonesia after colonial Dutch withdrawal in 1962. 

Japan. The adjective is Japanese.

Laos. The adjective is Lao. Use Loatian to refer to the people of Laos.

Macau. The Adjective is Macanese. Officially Macao Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China. See China entry. 

Malaysia. The adjective is Malaysian.

Mongolia. The adjective is Mongolian.

Myanmar. The adjective is Myanmarese. Formerly known as Burma, Myanmar has been engaged in one of the world's longest running civil wars for most of its independent years. Its naming and sovereignty has been an issue for much of the late 20th and early 21st centuries, particularly regarding the legitimacy of the name Myanmar versus Burma. In 1989 the military government changed the English translation of the name to Burma, though it is still referred to as Myanmar by the UN and most international bodies. The UN does recognize the current ruling junta government in Myanmar since the 2021 coup

Nepal. The adjective is Nepali.

North Korea. The adjective is North Korean. Also known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. North Korea is recognized by all but three UN member states: France, Japan, and South Korea. South Korea claims to be the sole legitimate government for the region of Korea.

Philippines. The adjective is ​​Philippine. Use Filipino for people.

Singapore. The adjective is Singaporean.

South Korea. The adjective is South Korean. South Korea is not recognized by North Korea, which claims to be the sole legitimate government for the region of Korea.

Sri Lanka. The adjective is Sri Lankan.

Taiwan. The adjective is Taiwanese. See post here and the China entry.

Tibet. The adjective is Tibetan. Tibet is a historical territory that is today de facto under administration of the People’s Republic of China within the Tibet Autonomous Region as well as other provinces such as Sichuan, Yunnnan. A Tibetan government in exile, continues to operate out of Dharamsala in Northern India. See the China entry. 

Thailand. The adjective is Thai.

Timor-Leste. The adjective is East Timorese or Timorese. 

Vietnam. The adjective is Vietnamese.

Oceania

American Samoa. The adjective is officially American Samoan or Samoan colloquially. American Samoa is an unincorporated territory of the United States

Australia. ​​The adjective is Australian..

Cook Islands. The adjective for a person from Cook Island is Cook Islander. Cook Islands (no the necessary) is a self governing island nation in a free association with New Zealand. 

Fiji. The adjective is Fijian. 

French Polynesia. The adjective is French Poynesian. French Polynesia is an overseas territory of the French Republic. 

Guam. The adjective is Guamanian. Guam is considered an unincorporated territory of the United States. Kiribati

Maldives. The adjective is Maldivian.

Marshall Islands. The adjective is Marshallese. The Marshall Islands is a UN recognized state and an associated state of the United States under the Compact of Free Association.

Micronesia. The adjective is Micronesian. Micronesia is a UN recognized state and an associated state of the United States under the Compact of Free Association

Nauru. The adjective is Nauruan.

Niue. The adjective is Niuean.Niue is a self governing island nation in a free association with New Zealand. 

New Caledonia. The adjective is New Caledonian.New Caledonia is a overseas territory of France. 

New Zealand. The adjective is New Zealand.

Northern Mariana Islands. The adjective is Northern Mariana Islander

(Mariana for short) or Chamorro colloquially.The Northern Mariana Islands are considered an unincorporated territory of the United States. 

Palau. The adjective is Palauan. Palau is an associated state of the United States under the Compact of Free Association. The adjective is Palauan. 

Papua New Guinea. The adjective is Papuan or Papua New Guinean, but be sure to differentiate from the Island of Papua. GV considers PNG as acceptable upon second mention. 

Réunion. The adjective is Réunionese. La Réunion in French. Réunion is considered an overseas region of France. 

Samoa. The adjective is Soamoan.

Solomon Islands. The adjective is Solomon Islander.

Tokelau.  The adjective is Tokolauan. Tokelau is a claimed antarctic dependat territory of New Zealand.

Tonga. The adjective is Tongan.

Tuvalu. The adjective is Tuvaluan.

Vanuatu. The adjective is Vanuatuan.

Wallis and Futuna. The adjective is Wallis and Fortuna islander. Wallis and Futuna is an overseas territory of France.  

Middle East and North Africa

Note: There is some debate about whether these nations (Sudan, South Sudan, Mauritania) are in the MENA or Subsaharan African region.

Algeria. The adjective is Algerian. 

Egypt. The adjective is Egyptian.

Iran. The adjective is Iranian.

Iraq. The adjective is Iraqi.

Israel. The adjective is Israeli. The state of Israel is a UN member state but is partially unrecognized by 29 governments around the world. Israel has occupied and currently controls territory claimed by Palestine. It has annexed part of East Jerusalem, and is exerting control over and occypying territory in the Palestinian-controlled West Bank and Gaza Strip. 

Jordan. The adjective is Jordanian.

Kuwait. The adjective is Kuwaiti.

Lebanon. The adjective is Lebanese.

Libya. The adjective is Libyan. 

Morocco. The adjective is Moroccan. Morocco claims control over territory known as the Western Sahara, (the self-declared Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic). This control is disputed. See the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic entry for more information. 

Oman. The adjective is Omani.

Pakistan. The adjective is Pakistani. India and Pakistan both claim the disputed territory of Kashmir in its entirety. While India controls one part, which it calls Jammu and Kashmir, Pakistan controls another part named Azad Kashmir. Besides, China currently administers Aksai Chin, a small part of the Ladakh region which India claims as part of Kashmir.

Qatar. The adjective is Qatari.

Saudi Arabia. The adjective is Saudi Arabian. 

State of Palestine. The adjective is Palestinian. Palestine is not an official sovereign nation according to the UN, but is a UN General Assembly Observer state and a member of 2 UN specialized agencies. Palestine declared its independence in 1988 but is not recognized as a state by the Israeli government. It is recognized by 138 govenrmnets around the world. 

Sudan. The adjective is Sudanese.

Syria. The adjective is Syrian.

Tunisia. The adjective is Tunisian.

United Arab Emirates. The adjective is Emirati. GV allows the abbreviated UAE on second mention. 

Turkey. The adjective Turkish. While the government requires the use of Türkiye on all official correspondence, GV allows the English spelling Turkey.

Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic. The adjective is Sahrawi. The Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR), is also known as Western Sahara. This territory is claimed by Morocco but is recognized as an independent state by 84 UN member states (43 of which have since withdrawn or paused their recognition). 

Yemen. The adjective is Yemeni.

Africa 

Angola. The adjective is Angolan. 

Benin. The adjective is Beninese. 

Botswana. The adjective is Botswanan. 

Burkina Faso. The adjective is Burkinabé

Burundi. The adjective is Burundian, the language is called KiRundi.

Cabo Verde. The adjective is Cabo Verdean.

Cameroon. The adjective is Cameroonian. 

Central African Republic. The adjective is Central African.

Chad. The adjective is Chadian. 

Comoros. Used with the article the. The adjective is Comorian. 

Congo. The adjective is Congolese. To differentiate it from the Democratic Republic of Congo, the name Congo-Brazzaville is also used. Both ‘Congo’ and ‘Congo-Brazzaville’, are acceptable in GV’s newsroom.

Côte d’Ivoire The adjective is Ivorian. Use a non-Capital d’ and a Capital I. GV does not use the English translation Ivory Coast. 

DR Congo. GV regards all the following terms as acceptable: ‘The DRC’, ‘The DR Congo’ and ‘Congo-Kinshasa’. The adjective, as for the Congo, is Congolese, which is confusing and thus should not be used. Example: say the President of the DR Congo instead of the Congolese President. 

Djibouti. The adjective is Djiboutian. 

Equatorial Guinea. The adjective is Equatoguinean.

Eritrea. The adjective is Eritrean.

Eswatini. Formerly known as Swaziland. The adjective is Eswatinian.

Ethiopia. The adjective is Ethiopian.

Gabon. The adjective is Gabonese.

The Gambia. ALWAYS used with the article ‘the’. The adjective is Gambian.

Ghana. The adjective is Ghanaian.

Guinea. The adjective is Guinean. 

Guinea Bissau, The adjective is Bissau-Guinean.

Kenya. The adjective is Kenyan. 

Lesotho. The adjective is Lesothian. 

Liberia. The adjective is Liberian. 

Madagascar. The adjective and the language are Malagasy.

Malawi. The adjective is Malawian. 

Mali. The adjective is Malian. 

Mauritania. The adjective is Mauritanian. 

Mozambique. The adjective is Mozambican. 

Namibia. The adjective is Namibian. 

Niger. The adjective is Nigerien.

Nigeria. The adjective is Nigerian.

Rwanda. The adjective is Rwandan

Senegal. The adjective is Senegalese.

Seychelles. The gendered adjective is Seychellois/Seychelloise (based on French). Do not use an article.

Sierra Leone. The adjective is Sierra Leonean.

Somalia. The Adjective is Somali or Somalian. It claims control over the contested Somaliand territory. See Somaliland entry for more information.

Somaliland. While Somaliland has been claimed by Somalia, it has been seeking independence since the Somaliland War of Independence in 1981. It is a de facto independent state. It has no UN membership and is not recognized by any other state. 

South Africa. The adjective is South African.

South Sudan. The adjective is South Sudanese 

Sudan. The adjective is Sudanese. 

Tanzania. The adjective is Tanzanian. 

Togo. The adjective is Togolese.

Uganda. The adjective is Ugandan. 

Zambia. The adjective is Zambian

Zimbabwe. The adjective is Zimbabwean. 

Europe and Eurasia

Albania. The adjective is Albanian.

Andorra. The adjective is Andorran. 

Armenia. Note on Nagorno-Karabakh, also known in Armenian as Artsakh. that proclaimed its independence from Azerbaijani territory and is recognized as such by other unrecognized territories only. When mentioning it, we should add “the unrecognized/self-proclaimed territory of Nagorno-Karabakh.” 

Austria. The adjective is Austrian.

Azerbaijan. The preferred adjective is Azerbaijani, Azeri is now mostly used to describe the language 

Belarus. The adjective is Belarusian. The Belorussia term is associated with the Soviet period and is no longer used in GV’s newsroom unless it specifically refers to the period until 1991. 

Belgium. The adjective is Belgium.

Bosnia and Herzegovina. The adjective is Bosnian. The term Bosniak is used to describe the language, which with variants, is also known as Croatian, Montenegrin, and Serbian. 

Bulgaria. The adjective is Bulgarian.

Croatia. The adjective is Croatian.

Cyprus. The adjective is Cypriot. Note on the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus: this entity is only recognized by Turkey, and not by the international community. If we mention this entity in a GV story, we should thus specify “only recognized by Turkey.” 

Czech Republic / Czechia. Both terms are valid and can be used in GV’s newsroom. 

Denmark. The adjective is Danish. Note on Greenland: this territory is part of Denmark with a high degree of independence. When mentioning it, we should use the double name Greenland/Kalaallit Nunaat, which is its indigenous name. The people living in Greenland are called Kalaallit in the local language. 

Estonia. The adjective is Estonian.

Finland. The adjective is Finnish

France. The adjective is French.

Georgia. The adjective is Georgian. Note Abkhazia and South Ossetia: both regions are occupied by Russia and have declared independence from Georgia. When mentioning them, we should add “the self-proclaimed Republic of South Ossetia or Abkhazia .”  Both territories are only recognized by certain unrecognized territories and a few countries). Note that there is an administrative region inside the Russian Federation that is called North Ossetia. 

Germany. The adjective is German.

Greece. The adjective is Greek.

Hungary. The adjective is Hungarian.

Iceland. The adjective is Icelandic.

Ireland. The adjective is Irish.

Italy. The adjective is Italian.

Kazakhstan. The adjective is Kazakhstani. There is a debate on the writing as the country has officially transitioned from the Cyrillic to the Latin alphabets, yet this process is still going on and Cyrillic remains widely used. According to the local Latin script spelling, the country should be written Qazaqstan, and the adjective Qazaq. 

Under the Soviet period, there was also a distinction inherited from the Russian language between Kazakh, usually referring to ethnic Kazakhs, and Kazakhstani, referring to the civic or administrative aspect and thus including all inhabitants, regardless of their ethnic origin. 

Kosovo. The adjective is  Kosovan. The territory is recognized as an independent country by about 100 countries

Kyrgyz Republic/Kyrgyzstan. The adjective is Kyrgyz. There are no other Latin script variants as the Kyrgyz language remains written in the cyrillic alphabet in the country. The official name is the Kyrgyz Republic but Kyrgyzstan is widely used and both can be used in GV’s newsroom. 

Latvia. The adjective is Latvian.

Liechtenstein. The adjective is Liechtenstein.

Lithuania. The adjective is Lithuanian.

Luxembourg. The adjective is Luxembourgish.

Malta. The adjective is Maltese. 

Moldova. The adjective is Moldovan. Note on Transnistria: eastern part of Moldova that proclaimed its independence and is recognized as such by other unrecognized territories only. When mentioning it, we should add “the unrecognized/self-proclaimed territory of Transnistria.” 

Monaco. The adjective is Monacan or Monagasque.

Montenegro. The adjective is Montenegrin. 

Netherlands. The adjective is Dutch.

North Macedonia. The adjective is Macedonian, the word North can be dropped in that case. 

Norway. The adjective is Norwegian.

Poland. The adjective is Polish.

Portugal. The adjective is Portugese.

Romania. The adjective is Romanian.

Russia. The adjective is Russian.

San Marino. The adjective is Sanmarinese. 

Serbia. The adjective is Serbian.

Slovakia. The adjective is Slovakian.

Slovenia. The adjective is Slovenian.

Spain. The adjective is Spanish.

Switzerland. The adjective is  Swiss.

Tajikistan. The adjective is Tajikstani.

Turkmenistan. The adjective is  Turkmen. Under the Soviet period, there was also a distinction inherited from the Russian language between Turkmen, usually referring to ethnic Turkmens, and Turkmenistani, referring to the civic or administrative aspect and thus including all inhabitants, regardless of their ethnic origin. 

Ukraine. The adjective is Ukranian. Never use “the Ukraine”, always “Ukraine” (the “the” is an outdated, colonial form). Ukrainian city/place names should be written using Ukrainian spelling, and not Russian (e.g., Kyiv, not Kiev; Odessa, not Odessa). If unsure, ping the Eastern Europe editor.

Uzbekistan. The adjective is Uzbekistani. Under the Soviet period, there was also a distinction inherited from the Russian language between Uzbek, usually referring to ethnic Uzbeks, and Uzbekistani, referring to the civic or administrative aspect and thus including all inhabitants, regardless of their ethnic origin. 

Vatican/Holy See: The adjective is Papal. The official name is the Holy See, which is not technically recognized as a state while it maintains diplomatic relations with most countries. The Vatican City State is a territory that gained independence from Italy. Both ‘Vatican’ and “Holy See’ are acceptable in GV’s newsroom  

Americas, Caribbean

Anguilla. The adjective is Anguillian. Anguilla is considered an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. 

Antigua and Barbuda. The adjectives are Antiguan or Barbudan.

Argentina. The adjective is Argentinian.

Aruba. The adjective is Aruban. Aruba is considered a territory of the Netherlands. 

Bolivia. The adjective is Bolivian.

Brazil. The adjective is Brazilian.

British Virgin Islands (BVI). The adjective is British Virgin Islander. The British Virgin Islands are considered an overseas territory of the United Kingdom.

Canada. The adjective is Canadian.

Netherlands Antillies. The adjective is Dutch Antillian. The Caribbean Netherlands refers to the islands of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba. They are all considered part of the Republic of the Netherlands. When describing the region, please refer to each island specifically and use the corresponding adjective: Bonairean, St. Eustatian or Statian, or Saban. 

Cayman Islands. The adjective is Caymanian.The Cayman Islands are considered an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. 

Chile. The adjective is Chilean.

Clipperton Island. The adjective is Clipperton Islander. Clipperton Island is a territory of France. 

Colombia. The adjective is Colombian.

Costa Rica. The adjective is Costa Rican.

Cuba. The adjective is Cuban.

Curaçao. The adjective is Curaçaoan. Curaçao is considered a territory of the Netherlands. 

Dominica. Adjective is Dominican (not to be confused with citizens from the Dominican Republic)

Dominican Republic. Shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti. The adjective is Dominican or “of the Dominican Republic.”  Make sure to clearly indicate whether you are discussing the Dominican Republic or the island of Dominica. 

Ecuador. The adjective is Ecuadorian.

El Salvador. The adjective is Salvadoran.

Falkland Islands. The adjective is Falkland Islander or Falklander. The Falkland Islands are considered an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. 

French Guiana. The adjectives are French Guianan or French Guianese. French Guiana is considered an overseas region of France. 

Guadeloupe. The adjective is Guadeloupean. Guadeloupe is considered an overseas region of France. 

Guatemala. The adjective is Guatemalan.

Greenland. The adjective is Greenlandish. Greenland is part of the Kingdom of Denmark, lying in the north Atlantic, north east of Canada. 

Haiti. The adjective is Haitian.

Honduras. The adjective is Honduran or Catracho(a) locally.

Martinique. The adjective is Martinican. Martinique is considered an overseas region of France.

Mexico. The adjective is Mexican. Within Mexcio the Zapatista region opperates with de facto autonomy. 

Montserrat. The adjective is Montserratian.Montserrat is considered an overseas territory of the United Kingdom.

 Nicaragua. The adjective is Nicaraguan.

Panama. The adjective is Panamanian.

Paraguay. The adjective is Paraguayan.

Peru. The adjective is Peruvian. 

Puerto Rico. The adjective is Puerto Rican. Puerto Rico is an unincorporated territory of the US.

Saint Martin. The adjective is Saint Martiner or Saint-Martinois. Saint Martin is considered an overseas “collectivity” of France and shares roughly half of the island with Sint Maarten. 

Sint Maarten. The adjective is Sint Maartener. Sint Maarten is considered a territory of the Netherlands. 

Turks and Caicos. The adjective is Turks and Caicos Islander or “of Turks and Caicos.” Turks and Caicos is considered an overseas territory of the United Kingdom. 

United States. The adjective is United States. Always refer to The United States, not “America” or “American” unless it is part of a proper noun. See our Editor’s guide for more information.

U.K. Virgin Islands. See British Virgin Islands. 

U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI). The adjective is American Virgin Islander or Virgin Islander. Also St. Thomian, St. Johnian, Crucian and Water Islanders depending on the individual island. The U.S. Virgin Islands are considered an unincorporated territory of the United States. 

Venezuela. The adjective is Venezuelan.

Uruguay. The adjective is Uruguayan.

Jamaica. The adjective is Jamaican.

Trinidad and Tobago. The adjective is Trinidadian or Tobagonian. Trinbagonian or Trini colloquially.

Guyana. The adjective is Guyanese.

Grenada. The adjective is Grenadian.

Suriname. The adjective is Surinamese.

Belize. The adjective is Belizean, B'zean colloquially.

Bahamas. The adjective is Bahamian.

Barbados. The adjective is Barbadian, Bajan colloquially. 

Saint Lucia. The adjective is Saint Lucian.

St. Vincent and the Grenadines. The adjective is Saint Vincentian or Vincentian,

Vincy colloquially.

Saint Kitts and Nevis. The adjective is Kittitian or Nevisian.