Writing guidelines

Date format

The date is always written in the order [Day] [Month] [Year] and includes all three values where applicable:

23 November 2020


  1. We do not use commas to separate values.
  2. If day of the week is included, it should be first in the order, before the date numeral.
  3. We do not use ordinal numbers to write the date, i.e. “1st”, “2nd”, “3rd” or “4th”.
  4. Day of the week can be shortened to 3 characters, e.g. Friday becomes Fri.
  5. Month can be shortened to 3 characters, e.g. November becomes Nov.
  6. A year can not be shortened. Use the full 4 digits.
  7. Any times shown inline with a date should follow the time format rules and be separated from the date with a bullet or a line break — [date] • [time].
  8. If a time is shown inline with a date, you should specify for the day of the month, month, year (and optionally day of the week), for clarity.


Time is always written in numerals, in the order [hh]:[mm] [a.m./p.m.]:

1:23 p.m.


  1. We use the 12-hour clock, with “a.m.” and “p.m.” to indicate morning and afternoon/evening hours.
  2. “a.m.” and “p.m.” are always preceded with a space, written in lowercase, and include periods.
  3. A colon should be used between the hour and minutes. Any other punctuation can be confused as decimal or monetary.
  4. Always specify minutes where possible.
  5. If displaying a time range, use a hyphen with spaces ( - ) to separate the start and end time, and include “a.m.”/”p.m.” for both start and end times.
  6. It’s better to say “48 hours ago” rather than “two days ago.”