I Created A Song List For Myself Recently And Came Across A Question About My Usage Of "80's" Is It Correct To Type 80's Or '80s Or Are Both Usages Correct? For Example, The Title To My Song List Is "Donald's List Of Passionate 80's Rock Songs" I Am New To This Site And Not Sure How I Will Get The Correct Answer To My Question. So Please E-Mail Me At

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Thank You And God Bless


There are several different issues here. The use of apostrophe-s to indicate a plural is widely condemned, and is tolerated only in exceptional cases of difficult readability, such as the plural of letters (e.g. a's, meaning more than one letter a, to distinguish from the word as). There is no difficulty in understanding 80s without an apostrophe, and so reason to include one.

If, on the other hand, the apostrophe is intended to indicate a possessive (i.e. Rock Songs of the 80s) then it should be 80s' Rock Songs, not 80's Rock Songs. Personally I find this apostrophe somewhat intrusive and unnecessary.

The initial apostrophe indicates omission of 19. While '80s for 1980s is not incorrect, I would say that the apostrophe feels slightly pedantic. Opinions may vary.


There is no need for the apostrophe before the "s", and major style guides agree. "Eighties" is attributive, not possessive. But then again, those same style guides want an apostrophe before the decade to mark the missing "19",

'80s rock

, which looks a bit fussy to me. There is often no one right answer to style questions.

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 GPY's reply was promoted to an answer.

Thank you GPY for your response. I made the right choice from your correction from 80's to 80s without the apostrophe in my Song List.