Commonly Confused Word Pairs: Long term/short term

September 14, 2006: Issue 156

“Long-term” and “short-term” are hyphenated as adjectives:
This is just a short-term solution.
You’ll need a better long-term plan.

Don’t use a hyphen when they’re nouns:
This solution is for the short term.
You’ll need a better plan for the long term.

ROUTING TIP: When you route layouts to copy editors, make sure the proofs are clean and current. If a proof doesn’t match an electronic file, we’ll send it back to you. This rule serves everyone’s best interest. Last-minute changes are the most likely places for errors to occur, and those are the very blocks of text we won’t see if we read outdated proofs. When you make a change in text after final proof, route that layout back to CEs for a spot-check.

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