Do You Capitalize The Word “Internet”?

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Candace Osmond

Candace Osmond studied Advanced Writing & Editing Essentials at MHC. She’s been an International and USA TODAY Bestselling Author for over a decade. And she’s worked as an Editor for several mid-sized publications. Candace has a keen eye for content editing and a high degree of expertise in Fiction.

Have you seen the word “Internet” written with both a small and a capital “i,” and you’re confused about which form is correct? I know, me too. Both capitalization and the lack of it are correct, but you need to know one basic rule. Let’s discover when the spelling of Internet should be capitalized and when to avoid it so you always get it correct with writing.

Capitalizing the Word Internet

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The word “internet” can be both a proper noun and a regular one, so you’ll often find it with both a capital “I” and a lowercase “i.” When referring to the WWW as a whole, it’s a proper name, and it should be capitalized. When used as a regular noun, you can write “internet” without a capital letter.

The word “internet” is probably the most used term in the modern world right now. It refers to the vast network of connected computers and devices, allowing data to be transmitted and shared quickly and easily.

Do You Capitalize the Internet?

Despite its widespread common usage, many people might not realize that this word should always be written with the capital “I.” This is because it originated as a proper noun, the name of a specific place or thing.

Do We Say Internet or the Internet?

Although many people debate whether to say “Internet” or “the Internet,” the truth is that both forms are technically correct. For example, internet browser vs. Internet Explorer. Both are nouns, but the latter one is an actual proper name of something.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the Internet as “a global computer network made up of networks of smaller, individually owned and operated, local computer networks.”

In this sense, the term “Internet” refers to the network as a whole, without distinguishing one single network from another.

However, since any search engine can pull up information on just about any topic under the sun, most people use the phrase “the Internet” to refer specifically to online resources related to a particular subject.

Is Internet Capitalized in MLA?

The word “internet” is always capitalized in MLA style.

MLA style rules refer to guidelines and standards for formatting academic papers and other written content. These guidelines are generally widely accepted in literary studies, both within academia and outside circles.

They are designed to help writers craft clear and consistent content while providing a uniform structure that makes it easier for readers to navigate any text.

At its core, MLA style is based on three key principles: crafting well-organized sentences, clearly citing sources, and formatting text according to accepted standards.

Overall, these guidelines are designed to promote clarity and avoid common errors in style and usage. While there may be some variation depending on the specific discipline or assignment, MLA style is generally seen as an effective tool for communicating effectively in the academic world.

Difference Between ‘Internet’ with a Capital Letter and ‘Internet’ with a Small Letter

Internet, with a capital “I,” is distinguished from any generic interconnection of smaller computer networks since it is a global network. The capitalization of the Internet symbolizes the importance of this worldwide network and its formal acknowledgment as a separate entity.

The capitalization of “Internet” is still required by several reputable news organizations, style manuals, and dictionaries in the modern era.

The Internet used to be a proper noun. But as time has gone on and it has become increasingly ubiquitous in everyday life, it has morphed into a generic word. Internet-savvy youth treat the Internet as naturally as traditional forms of mass media like TV and radio. As people’s conceptions of the Internet broadened, the term “Internet” began to be used more casually.

Internet As a Proper Name

Is “Internet” a proper noun? It is when it’s used to refer to the World Wide Web as a whole. In such cases, you should capitalize this word just like any other proper name, like the name of a city, a person, or a country.

Internet As a Common Noun

Because “internet” is an abbreviation for “interconnected network,” it can refer to any collection of interconnected networks. Even though “internet” is a proper name, it is not capitalized when referring to a collection of linked networks.

Final Thoughts

Should “internet” be capitalized? The real answer is that it depends on context. When writing about the Internet as a whole entity, capitalize it. When referring to individual websites, services, or other online entities, don’t capitalize it. It’s as simple as that. So, save this guide as a reference, and you’ll never get it wrong!

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