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American English V British English

I was recently asked by a financial services sector client to review about 50 pages of content on their U.S. website and edit this so that it was suitable for a British audience.

I thought that this would be a fairly straightforward task involving making all the obvious spelling changes…making sure that words like “color” and “flavor” had a “u” in them, changing “center” to centre, “toward” to towards, “program” to programme and amending words like “organization” and “specialize” to the UK spelling.

The work actually turned out to be rather more time-consuming than I had anticipated. It was easy enough to go through the text and amend the American spellings of particular words, but what surprised me was the amount of additional work required to amend some of the grammar, vocabulary and punctuation.

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