Saturday, May 14, 2011

time for a vote


Alright everybody, I'm on the fence about this one. On the one hand, the waterworks and electric company in monopoly are not actual utilities providing everyone a service. On the other hand, we can't be putting quotation marks around every symbolic item in a board game, that would be ridiculous! So what do you think, readers, quotation marks necessary, acceptable or totally silly??
Thanks for the photo James.

18 comments:

mujahid7ia said...

Hmm I never gave this use of quotation marks a second thought; but, now that you mention it, it does seem strange to put them around a word that is considered a real thing in the world of the game.

However, since "Utilities" are a certain entity mentioned in the rules and owning them affects gameplay, maybe the quotes are justified.

Carolina Linthead said...

I think the quotation marks to be unnecessary in this case, as in the normal course of the game, one would not expect to be dealing with both actual utilities and board game utilities. Still, this one is not so clear-cut as your "usual" fare.

Elizabeth said...

This is a tough one. I'm with mujahid7ia--to me, the quotation marks indicate that "Utility" is the name of a category of properties in Monopoly. "One 'Utility', where 'Utility' indicates the Electric Company or the Water Works."

I'm still not sure they're needed, though. The railroad cards don't give instructions about how much rent to charge if two "Railroads" are owned.

Lynn said...
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Lynn said...

Quotes not needed, it's a Utility in the world of the game. Notice "mortgage" and "rent" are not in quotes on the same game card, even though these do not refer to a real rent or a real mortgage.

Shane said...

I'm more worried about the unnecessary capitalization.

bethany said...

An extra wrinkle provided on twitter: when the game was created, the term "public utility" was fairly new (the earliest record in the OED is 1930, I'm having a hard time saying when the game was first invented, wikipedia leads me to believe 1934 or so.)

toep said...

Perhaps even in the thirty's there were cynics...

bensrib said...

If we're going to use quotation marks around utilities (which shouldn't be capitalized, by the way) because they're not really utilities, then we need to use quotation marks around rent, because it's not really rent.

Jonothan said...
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Jonothan said...

More than the quote marks, I'm concerned that Monopoly suddenly sees it necessary to have its own fictitious money symbol after 70-odd years.

Arlene said...

I vote with the people who say quotes are not needed for utilities any more than for rent or mortgage or railroad or any other aspect of the Monopoly make-believe world.

AlegraMarcel said...

Hmmm... I don't have a copy of "Monopoly" a my house so I can look at other cards, but I'm wondering if they are in quotes because they are quoting a specific category from the game (while not the specific "Utility").

I would not find it problematic as long as they are consistent. For example, as long as a card that said something like:

Go to nearest "Community Chest"

Had "Community Chest" in quotes, it would at least be specific. It still wouldn't really be necessary, but at least it would be consistent.

Dave said...

I think it's "sorta" silly.

Mary Jean said...

Actually, I view these quotation marks as absolutely "necessary".

Mary Jean said...

Actually, I view these quotation marks as "necessary".

Tring said...

This is just an older way of using quotations. Back a few decades ago, it was totally acceptable to put quotation marks around proper nouns in order to mark them off from the rest of the sentence so that people know clearly what the entity is. Imagine a sentence like:

Ann Jone's House of Pancakes went bankrupt today.

Now, is the name of the store "Ann Jone's House of Pancakes" or is it just "House of Pancakes" owned by Ann Jone? The quotation marks help to clarify.

asheeolee said...

I think it might mean "Utilities" as in the title of the cards. Utility cards. I think it is probably unnecessary, yes, but that might be what they meant to emphasize.