Per AP Style, do not presume maleness in constructing a sentence by defaulting to he/his/him. Usually it is possible, and always preferable, to reword the sentence to avoid gender: Reporters try to protect their sources.

In most cases, a plural pronoun such as they, them or their should agree in number with the antecedent: The children love the books their uncle gave them. They/them/their is acceptable in limited cases as a gender-neutral pronoun, when alternative wording is overly awkward or clumsy. If necessary for clarity, which is a priority, consider rewording the sentence. Gender-neutral use of a singular they is acceptable if that is the subject’s preference. In all instances, it is important to communicate with the subject as to how he, she or they want to be referred.

When they is used in the singular, it takes a plural verb: Taylor said they need a new car. (Be sure it’s clear from the context that only one person is involved.) The singular reflexive themself is acceptable only if needed in constructions involving people who identify as neither male nor female. It’s usually possible and often best to rephrase. Dana Adams was not available for comment (instead of Dana Adams did not make themself available for comment). For further clarification see the section on pronouns on

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