Do I Need to Use the Oxford Comma?

comma

If you’ve been on social media at all and paid attention to grammar arguments, you may have seen a lot of discussion about the Oxford comma and whether writers need to use it.

The Oxford commaโ€”or serial commaโ€”is the comma that appears before the final item in a series, such as:

  • The colors of the American flag are red, white, and blue.
  • The most popular pizza toppings are pepperoni, mushrooms, and olives.

Some people insist that this final comma is unnecessary and that those sentences are just as intelligible if written:

  • The colors of the American flag are red, white and blue.
  • The most popular pizza toppings are pepperoni, mushrooms and olives.
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