High street book retailer, Waterstone's, have announced that they will be dropping the apostrophe from their name.
"In the internet age," said Walter Stone (no relation), PR spokeswoman for the company, "an apostrophe causes confusion and is quite difficult to put onto the internet in the first place, according to our web guy. Our internet address has no apostrophe, and yet all our stores do. We can do nothing about the internet. We can, however, change the company name."
The move is one previously taken by Morrisons and Boots, and one being watched with interest from McDonald's and Sainsbury's.
The Apostrophe Preservation Society have pointed out that Waterstone's are struggling in the face of stiff opposition from the internet.
"We think that this is a cost saving measure," said Sean O'Connor of the APS, who has a vested interest in keeping the apostrophe alive and well. "By removing the apostrophe, all their new signs will cost one character less. This has nothing to do with simplicity and everything to do with cost saving. For a book store it is reprehensible."
Should the furore die down, Sainsbury's are already in high level talks to discuss how to remove the apostrophe from their name.
"It may be that we become Sainsburys," said John Sainsbury, son of the founder, John Sainsbury and current CEO. "Or we could become Sainsburies. We haven't decided yet. My own favoured approach is to become JS, as this is only two letters long. I envy Asda, Aldi and Lidl, because they have such cheap signs. Why did my dad have to have such a long surname? It's costing us a fortune."