I am looking for a way to classify proper nouns that have multiple capitalised letters within the same word. Most examples are company or product names such as SteamVR or LinkedIn.

If there is a term for this classification, what is it called?


1 Answer 1


Bicapitalization (or BiCapitalization) is the use of a capital letter in the middle of a word or name—usually a brand name or a company name, such as iPod and ExxonMobil.

In compound names, when two words are joined without spaces, the first letter of the second word is usually the one that's capitalized, as in DreamWorks.

Among the numerous synonyms for bicapitalization (sometimes shortened to bicaps) are CamelCase, embedded caps, InterCaps (short for internal capitalization), medial capitals, and midcaps.

Examples and Observations

"[A] distinctive feature of Internet graphology is the way two capitals are used—one initial, one medial--a phenomenon variously called bicapitalization (BiCaps), intercaps, incaps, and midcaps. Some style guides inveigh against this practice, but it is widespread: AltaVista, RetrievalWare, ScienceDirect, ThomsonDirect, NorthernLight, PostScript, PowerBook, DreamWorks, GeoCities, EarthLink, PeaceNet, SportsZone, HotWired, CompuServe, AskJeeves
More complex examples include QuarkXPress and aRMadillo Online. Some of the new names cause difficulty, in that long-standing orthographic conventions are contravened: for example, sentences can begin with small letters, as in eBay is interested or iMac is the answer, a problem that faces anyone who wants to start a sentence with a lower-case username or program command."
(David Crystal, Language and the Internet, 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press, 2006)

Richard Nordquist; "Bicapitalization, From DreamWorks to YouTube", Updated on February 12, 2020 [See the article for further discussion.]

BiCapitalization The use of capital letters within a name to visually delimit names that are composite words, for example "the InsertString function". Philip Laplante; Dictionary of Computer Science, Engineering and Technology (2017)

The earliest St. Joe town adjoins Seaside and is called WaterColor. The bicapitalization suggests ExxonMobil and TimeWarner and through this association establishes the aura of affluence that is critically important to the developer. After all, prices at WaterColor are astronomical in comparison to historical house prices in the neighborhood. Michael Conzen; The Making of the American Landscape (2014)

In the dinosaur days of computers, some machines printed only capital letters. Ever since, computer users have had a unique attitude toward upper and lower case letters. Bicapitalization describes the practice of inserting caps inside words as with these trademarks: WordPerfect, Next, Genie, Tex, VisiCalc, dBASE, Frame Maker, and CompuServe ... English Journal, Vol. 84, p.69 (1995)

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