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Even robots aren't safe from ebola

by: Romany Howes (29 October 2014)

Do I ask for much in terms of grammatical correctness? No, I don’t. What I do ask for is a HYPHEN now and again, purely to clarify a meaning. Look at this headline that I happened to come across online:
“Ebola killing robots being used in US hospitals.”

WOW, that Ebola virus is more powerful than the authorities are letting on! Can it really kill robots? Is it that powerful? What hope is there for us all??

Then I looked harder and, being a proofreader by trade, added a hyphen:
“Ebola-killing robots being used in US hospitals.”

Ah. Now it makes sense: to combat the Ebola virus, some hospitals have introduced a special purpose virus-zapping robot.

If you can’t do it yourself, use a proofreading service and save the world from mass hysteria and panic.

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Comments...

Ref: 122 Basically, "ebola-killing" is an adjective, so it is one word - but a hyphenated one. It's also an unusual combination so it definitely needs that hyphen!
Marilyn - 11:40 03-11-2014
Ref: 121 Often the humble hyphen is abused, but here, quite evidently, it is essential.
Garry - 13:44 30-10-2014

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