The Most Comma Mistakes

BY BEN YAGODA

As I noted in my earlier article, rules and conventions about when to use and not to use commas are legion. But certain errors keep popping up. Here are a few of them.

Identification Crisis
If I’ve seen it once, I’ve seen it a thousand times. I’m referring to a student’s writing a sentence like:

I went to see the movie, “Midnight in Paris” with my friend, Jessie.

Comma after “movie,” comma after “friend” and, sometimes, comma after “Paris” as well. None are correct — unless “Midnight in Paris” is the only movie in the world and Jessie is the writer’s only friend. Otherwise, the punctuation should be: See More . . .

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