It’s time we gave the semi-colon the flick
V.I. Senior creative Henk Lustig picks a fight with the keyboard.
Whether you’re a fan of QWERTY, DVORAK, KALQ or any other keyboard layout, it's your business entirely. What I am here to propose is that we relegate that questionable punctuation mark—the semicolon—to the back bench behind the shift key. The mark destined to climb the ranks into the sans-shift position on the keyboard? The humble colon.
In terms of its usefulness, it’s a no-brainer. The colon implies the beginning of a list, an introduction to a quotation, an expansion of a thought or acts as a designator of further explanation. We even use it to break up time into bite-sized chunks: it denotes the difference between hours, minutes and seconds.
Although the occasionally essential semicolon can’t be dropped altogether, its underwhelming purpose of prompting a pause only marginally longer than that of a comma seems too trivial to warrant its front and centre position on the modern keyboard. We need efficiency dammit.
It's time for a new dawn. Up with the colon, and down with the semi.