The Associated Press on Thursday updated its stylebook so that married individuals will be referred to as husband and wife, regardless of whether they are in a same-sex marriage. The change comes a week after the AP received criticism for an internal memo designating the word "partners" for individuals in same-sex marriages.
The following entry was added to the stylebook, online and soon in print as well:
husband, wife Regardless of sexual orientation, husband or wife is acceptable in all references to individuals in any legally recognized marriage. Spouse or partner may be used if requested.
"The AP has never had a Stylebook entry on the question of the usage of husband and wife," Mike Oreskes, AP Senior Managing Editor for U.S. News, said in an announcement on the change. "All the previous conversation was in the absence of such a formal entry. This lays down clear and simple usage. After reviewing existing practice, we are formalizing 'husband, wife' as an entry."