Alright and All Right
The Quick AnswerWhat is the difference between alright and all right?
Alright is a nonstandard variant of all right.
Even though alright is becoming more acceptable, it is best avoided in formal writing.
Alright Is Still Not Widely AcceptedMany people use alright unaware that it is not universally accepted as a word. It should be written all right. However, the merger of all right to alright has been underway for over a century, and it is becoming more acceptable. Mergers such as altogether and already are fully acceptable. They are far older than alright.
It's Not Right, and It's Not WrongInterestingly, the Microsoft Word spellchecker will not highlight alright as an error, but it will also not suggest alright if you spell it incorrectly.
Therefore, Microsoft is sitting on the fence with regard to alright being accepted as standard.
MS Word does not show alright as an error and does not offer alright as an option.
Alright is Deemed More Modern by SomeSome would even argue that, through common usage, alright is becoming more acceptable than all right. The makers of TV show "It'll Be Alright on the Night" are known to have considered "It'll Be AlL Right on the Night" but opted for the former as a more modern version.
Avoid Alright and All RightYour readers will have different opinions on the use of alright and all right. Therefore, avoid both versions — especially in formal writing. (This should not be difficult as they do not lend themselves to formal writing.)
All right (to reinforce an assertion)
- It is overdue all right. (Delete all right or reword: It is substantially overdue.)
- All right, it is time to discuss Kevin. (Delete all right or reword: We agree that it is time to discuss Kevin.)
- Her work ethic was all right. (Reword: Her work ethic was satisfactory.)