Oops. I guess not even the all-powerful BBC is immune to errors of “its” versus “it’s”. While the former is possessive (its car), the latter is a contraction of “it is”.
Reporting on Apple and Microsoft, PC Magazine made a mistake in which the phrase, “It may” became “Imay.”
PC World reported on a new service by Google called Buzz and misspelled “hasn’t” by leaving out the “n”.
Note: We are experimenting with quotation marks, as part of an ongoing study to examine their interaction with other punctuation marks. The quotation marks around the letter “n” above would be incorrect in American English but correct in British English. We currently believe that the British version is a better rule. There is no reason to include the period in the quotation in this instance, as it confers to additional information to the quotation and may, in fact, confuse a reader into thinking that the period is part of the omission.
The Miami Herald recently reported on the blue moon occurring tonight (which I probably won’t see through our snowstorm). They misspelled the word “phenomenon.”
The Vancouver Sun, reporting on the tragic loss of a Canadian reporter who was covering the war in Afghanistan, did not complete a sentence caption that it was writing.
While this blog is nothing more than a dumb copy errors blog, we are sorry for the loss of all those whose lives have been taken in wars, including this reporter Michelle Lang and the four Canadian soldiers who died alongside her.
ABC News misspelled ‘al Qaeda’ in a headline today that slipped into their RSS feed and was aggregated by Google News.
In an article about a suicide bombing attempt, the LA Times misspelled the word ‘carrier’.
A USA Today sports blog reported on LeBron James’ decree to give up his number in honor of the retired great Michael Jordan. For a number of reasons, it’s kind of silly. USA Today meant to say “wear” and said “were.” Darn that spell checker and its unwillingness to ask the grammar checker before okaying things. Additionally, it appears that USA Today do not put an additional comma before the “and” at the end of lists, which is common in local style, though I do not prefer it since it makes the last two items in a list appear to be one, inseparable item. Finally, the mixing of modifiers for each item in the list is jarring to me, and I do not prefer it.
The Boston Globe misspelled the word “loss,” in a caption about the Boston Celtics loss to the Phoenix Suns (link likely not pointing to original material). In one sense, we are relieved that the Celtics “loss” to the Suns, since it takes all the consecutive game streak pressure off of us while we concentrate on playing basketball that’s balanced between halves of the season. My apologies to my reader; the Celtics and the Red Sox make me a bit emotional.
The Boston Globe is a major newspaper that runs several blogs, including one called MetroDesk, which reported on a stabbing in Brighton, MA. I am not convinced this is flat-out incorrect, but I think it should read, “… found the victim at about 2:16 am ….” If the modifier “about” was not in this sentence, then it would be incorrect. Additionally, I think that “avenues” should be capitalised, since it is the complete name of both streets, Brighton Ave and Harvard Ave.
Naturally there is some hesitation on my part whenever I am posting about grammar in stories where something tragic has occurred. It is not at all my intention to diminish the value of the stories, but I feel that these stories deserve proper copy editing to convey their important content more accurately.
Additionally, I would like to note that I’m now considering major blogs to be fair game, since their readership is vast, and they should be held to higher standards of journalism. However, I cannot and will not publish every mistake Engadget makes, since I’d have to hire an assistant.