Context: software company training documents.

We commonly use the phrase "go live" when talking about making a system operational. I'm fine with using it as two separate words, but it becomes awkward when it's an adjective. E.g. Preparing for your go live transition. Am I focusing on this too much, or is that potentially confusing? I've seen this phrase written as go live, go-live, Go Live, and Go-Live (all in one Microsoft article, actually). I'd appreciate some opinions.

closed as not constructive by cornbread ninja 麵包忍者, FumbleFingers, Kristina Lopez, Mitch, MetaEd Jun 5 '13 at 5:30

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I think this should be treated like any other multi-word phrase. Use two words when it's a noun phrase:

The go live will be this weekend

And a hyphen when it's an adjectival phrase:

We're preparing for your go-live transition.

Now, unless Go Live or Go-Live is a proper name, I don't see any reason it should be capitalized.

  • Thank you both for your input. I've been told by a coworker that 'launch' doesn't quite convey what we're doing (transitioning from a sandbox environment to an operational system). I think I may have to put my aversion aside and treat this word as described in this answer. – Greg Williams Jun 4 '13 at 19:32
  • 2
    @Greg Williams: Whatever you do, it will always be somewhat awkward. You're trying to force a phrasal verb (go live) into an adjectival role. English is pretty flexible, and will bend a lot without breaking, but asking for a "correct" way to do something like this is effectively a fool's errand. – FumbleFingers Jun 4 '13 at 19:47

The word activate would convey the intent and I would encourage you to use it.

Consistency in terminology as a defense only goes so far and I don't believe it will be enough to earn your audience's forgiveness for using a phrase like "the go live" or "your go live"

Preparing for your software/website activation

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