4. Dates, Addresses and Names; Written From General To Specific

Dates, addresses, and names should be written in a certain standardized form going from the general to the specific. Dates should be written using the following format: year/month/day. Address labels should be written with the name of the country first (if necessary), then the state or province, next the county, then the city, then the street address. Finally, the name of the addressee should be written.

People’s names should also be written and spoken so that they progress from the general to the specific, like they do in China and many other parts of the world. Basically, we should use the ‘eastern order’ system of naming in which the family name is stated first, then the given name. A family (last) name should be stated first because it is the general name of a group of people (the family). Then the more specific first name should be stated to individually identify the referenced person. For example, Smith John instead of John Smith. It’s more logical.

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