I was reading in Mignon Fogerty's Quickanddirtytips_When you need periods after abbreviations about the guidelines she gives covering the use of periods at the end of abbreviations ... when you should do so; but now I am wondering whether these guidelines change when abbreviating the plural form of the word?

For example:

Word: Extension
US Abbreviation: Ext.
British Abbreviation: Ext.


Word: Extensions
US Abbreviation: Exts.
British Abbreviation: Exts. or Exts

Now using the guidelines from that page, US English always uses a period at the end of abbreviations so it would be Exts.; however British English denotes that you only use a period at the end when the last letter of abbreviation doesn't match the last letter of the full word.

With that in mind then that is why with the non-plurlal version you end up using Ext., but the question now is, do we keep following this tandard and just append an s to the end for Exts. or do we know say the s at the end of the abbreviation now matches the s at the end of the full word and instead use Exts?

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    I think the implication that BrE only discards the period when the last letters do match is misleading. For all practical purposes, I think the position is that BrE orthography is less "conservative" than AmE in this area. And since the general trend is increasingly to discard the period after familiar and much-used abbreviations, Brits naturally tend to use any excuse. Hence later usages, particularly BrE, tend to favour revs per minute with no period (rev and revolution don't end with the same letter, but revs and revolutions do, and that's good enough! :) Mar 19, 2017 at 19:13
  • @FumbleFingers Some interesting points - thanks! :)
    – Brett
    Mar 19, 2017 at 19:45
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    The idea that all Anglophones in the UK speak one form of English and all Anglophones in the US speak a second form is best discarded ASAP. I've found a style guide licensing eg, ie etc and find that this style best avoids problems with dual punctuation etc. Mar 19, 2017 at 23:16
  • @EdwinAshworth Could you explain your second sentence a little more - I didn't quite understand it?
    – Brett
    Mar 20, 2017 at 8:21
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    Though doubtless he advocates using a full stop where needed for disambiguation. Note however that Kris has a different opinion (and it can be seen that these matters ultimately boil down to matters of opinion, if only about where clarification / standardisation is essential). You yourself choose to quote from one particular style guide here. Mar 20, 2017 at 8:53


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