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I read here about the spacing around some punctuation marks. Should I be strict about using a narrow space before a ?, !, etc., or can I just use a normal, non-breaking space? The text is in a game.


Je lisais ceci, à propos des espaces autour des ponctuations. Dois-je être strict concernant les espaces fines avant ?, !, etc., ou puis-je utiliser une espace insécable ? Le texte est celui d'un jeu.

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    Le mieux est d'utiliser des espaces fines, mais je pense que la plupart des gens ne connaît même pas l'existence de ce type d'espace. – Toto Feb 9 '15 at 10:51
  • Je ne sais même pas comment les taper sur mon clavier… – Édouard Feb 9 '15 at 10:59
  • @Édouard, et c'est l'autre problème ! Dois-je copier et coller l'espace chaque fois ? – James Webster Feb 9 '15 at 11:03
  • I suppose you are talking about a video game. Choose wisely your font. I think you don't have to worry about this, let be honest, nobody will never notice. Use regular spaces – TCHdvlp Feb 9 '15 at 15:09
  • @Édouard Avec LibreOffice ou OpenOffice, les ; : ? ! sont précédés d'espaces fines insécables (Options, ..Writer .. Aide au formatage) – cl-r Feb 9 '15 at 17:57
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Spaces between a text and a punctuation mark such as ? ; : and ! in french are only here to make reading easier.

It is customary in french to use thin, non-breaking spaces but it is not required, it is only a typographic convention (as described in the 'Lexique des règles typographiques en usage à l'Imprimerie nationale'). And even in those conventions, a certain leeway is allowed concerning the width of the space that should be used.

The only thing that should be respected is that those spaces be made non-breaking as it will avoid a punctuation mark to be separated from the last word of the sentence, making it much easier to read.

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Je pense que le mieux est de faire simple, utilise un espace "classique". La différence est infime, et ne sera quasiment pas perçue.


Be simple, just use the "normal" space. There's not a big difference, and this difference will not be noticed.

  • This answer would be the better if the question wasn't explicitly mentioning the context being a fixed translation for a game. In casual text-based exchange like boards, mails and chats, noone will expect (nor even spot) thin-spaces, it would be useless. In a game, on the other hand, it could make sense. – RomainValeri Mar 10 '15 at 10:32

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