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Terms related to the internet are capitalized only if they are trademarked as such or otherwise constitute the proper name of an organization or the like. Generic terms that are capitalized as part of a proper name may be lowercased when used alone or in combination.



internet protocol (IP); the internet; the net; an intranet


log in (v); login (adj. and n.)

"You'll need to log in so you can access your calendar."
"Never share your login credentials."


social media

URL (Uniform Resource Locator—individual web address)

Sentences that include a URL should be punctuated normally (avoid use of http:// in print publications).

The UMass home page is at

Break addresses, if necessary, before a dot or after a dash. Examples:



World Wide Web; the web, a website, a web page

A few notes on creating alternative text for web imagery…

Alternative text, or “alt text,” is the description of images and icons that can be accessed with screen readers or read aloud to people who are blind. Some people prefer to read complex material in print rather than see a chart or icon, so using alt text enables users to select the best way for them to process web content.

When creating alt text, keep the widest possible audience in mind, making the text as generally accessible as you can. For example:

  • When describing people, use terms that are neutral in terms of gender, race, ethnicity, ability, and age. Use such terms only if they are necessary or applicable to the storyline.
  • Instead, use their relationship to the university, such as alumni, student/s, parents, faculty, basketball player.
  • Make sure the description is in keeping with the function of the image and the web content that surrounds it.
  • Be brief and specific, but use complete sentences if they make the meaning clearer.
  • Use correct punctuation to facilitate the sense when read aloud.
  • Describe what someone would see, literally, rather than intangible qualities. For example: “a green landscape” rather than “a beautiful green landscape.” Or “a car with the doors ripped off” rather than “a car that just exploded.”