Grammar + spelling (((sigh)))

236 replies
I know there have been many posts about this, but I just saw an email subject line with only 3 words -- and a full 1/3 of them were misspelled!

"Congrats - Your in!"

(((sigh)))

-- TW

PS: Recipients of emails like this have trouble taking the senders seriously -- and I don't blame them.
#grammar #sigh #spelling
  • Profile picture of the author dgridley
    Especially with spell checkers available, there's just no excuse. It amounts to sheer laziness.
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    • Profile picture of the author rosetrees
      Originally Posted by dgridley View Post

      Especially with spell checkers available, there's just no excuse. It amounts to sheer laziness.
      Unfortunately spell checkers only flag up words that are misspelled and become non-words. If your mistake makes a real word, spell checkers don't see it.

      Just for fun, here is a little poem sent to me a few years ago - and which I included in my beginner's computer course as a lesson on the perils of relying on a spell checker. (You need to read it with a South African accent)

      Eye have a spelling chequer
      It came with my pea sea
      It plainly marques four my revue
      Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.

      Eye strike a quay and type a word
      And weight four it two say
      Weather eye am wrong oar rite
      It shows me straight a weigh

      As soon as a mist ache is maid
      It nose be four two long
      And eye can putt the error rite
      Its rear lea ever wrong

      Eye have run this poem threw it
      I am shoe your please two no
      It letter perfect awl the weigh
      My chequer tolled me sew.
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      • Profile picture of the author mytoy78
        Originally Posted by rosetrees View Post

        Unfortunately spell checkers only flag up words that are misspelled and become non-words. If your mistake makes a real word, spell checkers don't see it.

        Just for fun, here is a little poem sent to me a few years ago - and which I included in my beginner's computer course as a lesson on the perils of relying on a spell checker. (You need to read it with a South African accent)

        Eye have a spelling chequer
        It came with my pea sea
        It plainly marques four my revue
        Miss steaks eye kin knot sea.

        Eye strike a quay and type a word
        And weight four it two say
        Weather eye am wrong oar rite
        It shows me straight a weigh

        As soon as a mist ache is maid
        It nose be four two long
        And eye can putt the error rite
        Its rear lea ever wrong

        Eye have run this poem threw it
        I am shoe your please two no
        It letter perfect awl the weigh
        My chequer tolled me sew.

        How witty, but true!
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    • Profile picture of the author Nick Sammut
      Originally Posted by dgridley View Post

      Especially with spell checkers available, there's just no excuse. It amounts to sheer laziness.

      Good post, I agree 100%
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      • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
        Originally Posted by Nick Sammut View Post

        Good post, I agree 100%
        ...says the guy who misspelled it's.



        Sometimes it really is as easy as shooting fish in a barrel.

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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
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  • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
    Spell check would not have caught that one.

    What's needed is a GED!

    -- TW
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    • Profile picture of the author BloggingPro
      Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

      Spell check would not have caught that one.

      What's needed is a GED!

      -- TW
      Yes, spell-check generally doesn't catch very many mistakes. I personally find certain grammar mistakes quite hilarious, but do agree that they have no place in a business environment.
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    • Profile picture of the author dgridley
      True, true..

      I think most of us get lax in our grammar and spelling from time to time though.. just no excuse to send it out in copy.

      Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

      Spell check would not have caught that one.

      What's needed is a GED!

      -- TW
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    • Profile picture of the author Jerry Roberts
      Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

      Spell check would not have caught that one.

      What's needed is a GED!

      -- TW

      Sorry, even that guarantees nothing these days.
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    • Profile picture of the author cjreynolds
      Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

      Spell check would not have caught that one.

      What's needed is a GED!

      -- TW
      Ow! That was harsh!
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      I just added this sig so I can refer to it in my posts...

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  • Profile picture of the author aseper
    There is nothing that annoys me more than not knowing your and you're, there, their, and they're, and other elementary grammar rules. It's just soooooo easy.
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
      Originally Posted by aseper View Post

      There is nothing that annoys me more than not knowing your and you're, there, their, and they're, and other elementary grammar rules. It's just soooooo easy.
      While this isn't perfect, I believe it's an improvement. I'm sure you will appreciate it.

      There is nothing that annoys me more than not knowing the difference between your and you're, or there, their, and they're; as well as other elementary grammar rules. It's just so easy.
      I chose this post, because a lot of people forget to italicize words when referenced as above. That being said, I'm with Paul. I will only point out other people's mistakes if they start point out someone else's, or if I'm being paid to do so.

      However, I welcome corrections in my own writing, because I believe it can help me improve my writing.

      Now...why is it that EVERY time somebody complains about spelling and grammar, they make spelling and grammatical errors themselves? If nobody has given this a name, I call dibs on Oksa's Law. (I may be no Godwin, but I can try, right?)

      All the best,
      Michael
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        Michael,
        Now...why is it that EVERY time somebody complains about spelling and grammar, they make spelling and grammatical errors themselves? If nobody has given this a name, I call dibs on Oksa's Law.
        There already is one. I don't recall it, but it was mentioned here in a previous Zombie War.


        Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

          Michael,There already is one. I don't recall it, but it was mentioned here in a previous Zombie War.


          Paul
          Thanks Paul.

          By the way, is your quote from Shakespeare or Tolkien by any chance?

          ~Michael
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          • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
            Michael,
            By the way, is your quote from Shakespeare or Tolkien by any chance?
            Nope. They're not even in the same class as the gentleman whose work that paraphrases.


            Paul
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            • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              Michael,Nope. They're not even in the same class as the gentleman whose work that paraphrases.


              Paul
              I have no idea, but those seemed like obvious guesses. At the risk of looking foolish, I will make another guess, this time based on the particular author's voice...

              Is it Milne?

              EDIT: Such a phrase would be right at home in Orwell, as well.

              Don't do this to me, Paul!



              All the best,
              Michael
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              "Ich bin en fuego!"
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              • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                Michael,
                I have no idea, but those seemed like obvious guesses. At the risk of looking foolish, I will make another guess, this time based on the particular author's voice...

                Is it Milne?
                Oh, Pooh. Doesn't seem like anyone's going to get it.

                It's from the mid-80's claymation movie, "The Adventures of Mark Twain." Specifically, the section based on "The Diary of Adam and Eve."

                Sam wuz de man, bay-be.


                Paul
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                • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
                  Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                  Michael,Oh, Pooh. Doesn't seem like anyone's going to get it.

                  It's from the mid-80's claymation movie, "The Adventures of Mark Twain." Specifically, the section based on "The Diary of Adam and Eve."

                  Sam wuz de man, bay-be.


                  Paul
                  Thank you!

                  "The Diary of Adam and Eve" is one of my favorites by Twain, but I must admit it would have taken me a while to guess it.

                  My next guess was going to be Anthony Burgess, but not Ernest Hemingway, because I can't imagine him even suggesting a word be repeated.

                  All the best,
                  Michael
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                  "Ich bin en fuego!"
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              • Profile picture of the author mlhearing
                Hi, my name is Michael, and I'm a . . . recovering Wombat.

                But my Wombattishness served me well in my years as a freelance copy editor.

                Been lurking here a long time. This thread finally drew me out--because it's such great fun.

                I remember reading that William Faulkner couldn't spell and punctuate to save his life, but he did pretty okay.

                And that Paul Myers cat can flat out write.

                See? I'm recovering.
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                • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
                  Originally Posted by mlhearing View Post

                  Hi, my name is Michael, and I'm a . . . recovering Wombat.
                  <in unison>

                  HI MICHAEL!
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          • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
            Originally Posted by Michael Oksa View Post

            By the way, is your quote from Shakespeare or Tolkien by any chance?
            I'm tempted to suggest that Tolkien probably thought there were several thousand words worth repeating.

            Sounds more like Twain or Wodehouse to me.


            Frank
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              Frank,
              Sounds more like Twain or Wodehouse to me.
              Dude! You ROCK!

              Just as I was typing it in. My faith in the classical literacy of Warrior Nation is still weak, but it has not yet toppled.


              Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          AHA! Found it.

          Muphry's law - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

          Muprhy's Law, also called Skitt's Law and Hartman's Law of Prescriptivist Retaliation. The general consensus being: "if you write anything criticizing, editing or proofreading, there will be a fault of some kind in what you have written."

          In the above-linked entry, we find a worthy passage penned in 1909, from the author of "The Devil's Dictionary," one Ambrose Bierce, which suggests...

          In neither taste nor precision is any man's practice a court of last appeal, for writers all, both great and small, are habitual sinners against the light; and their accuser is cheerfully aware that his own work will supply (as in making this book it has supplied) many "awful examples".


          Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author NicoleBeckett
    It's amazing to me how many people *don't* know proper grammar. In fact, one of my bigger clients actually came to me, in part, because he was sick of dealing with writers that didn't know the difference between to, two, and too!

    It doesn't take long to proofread something before you send it out. And, it's time well-spent when you consider how much even simple mistakes can hurt your credibility.
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    • Profile picture of the author aseper
      Originally Posted by NicoleBeckett View Post

      It's amazing to me how many people *don't* know proper grammar. In fact, one of my bigger clients actually came to me, in part, because he was sick of dealing with writers that didn't know the difference between to, two, and too!

      It doesn't take long to proofread something before you send it out. And, it's time well-spent when you consider how much even simple mistakes can hurt your credibility.

      So true. Proofreading, especially in an email, is just so easy and doesn't take much time. I just really think there are a lot of people out there who just don't know the basic rules of grammar I taught high school English for several years, and it was horrifying at times.
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    • Profile picture of the author DeborahDera
      Originally Posted by NicoleBeckett View Post

      It's amazing to me how many people *don't* know proper grammar. In fact, one of my bigger clients actually came to me, in part, because he was sick of dealing with writers that didn't know the difference between to, two, and too!

      It doesn't take long to proofread something before you send it out. And, it's time well-spent when you consider how much even simple mistakes can hurt your credibility.
      I was recently trying to expand my team of writers and had an applicant tell me she had excellent "grammer" skills. I deleted her email.
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  • Profile picture of the author MerlynSanchez
    What really gets me are professionally made signs! I've seen misspelled words on businesses, signs and company vehicles.

    I understand that the client doesn't know how to spell, but what about the sign maker?
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    • Profile picture of the author aseper
      Originally Posted by MerlynSanchez View Post

      What really gets me are professionally made signs! I've seen misspelled words on businesses, signs and company vehicles.

      I understand that the client doesn't know how to spell, but what about the sign maker?

      Not to mention all the people it must go through before the sign gets put up!!! How many people must see and not notice the misspelling or mistakes before it actually goes somewhere public?
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      • Profile picture of the author cjreynolds
        Originally Posted by aseper View Post

        Not to mention all the people it must go through before the sign gets put up!!! How many people must see and not notice the misspelling or mistakes before it actually goes somewhere public?
        It's amazing - I once saw a sign in a Walgreen's window that advertised "Incest Repellent"!

        I pointed it out to a store employee, but the sign was still there 2 days later!
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        • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
          "I look forward to the possibility of designing your new building.

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          • Profile picture of the author Tom B
            Banned


            This is my very first WSO, so go easy on me (I'm nervous about this
            + I'm keeping it low-key).

            I have a background in radio (ok, ok, it was many years ago). But I still have the "pipes."

            Note: This wso is for voice only ...
            music is NOT included (but I will tell you where I get my free + royalty-free music).
            To be honest Timothy, I found your wso difficult to read. I am sure others didn't have a problem but I did.

            I copied some portions to show some of the problems I had. I felt like I was reading two sentences for each line.

            I believe you could have made it easier to comprehend.
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            • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
              Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

              To be honest Timothy, I found your wso difficult to read. I am sure others didn't have a problem but I did.

              I copied some portions to show some of the problems I had. I felt like I was reading two sentences for each line.

              I believe you could have made it easier to comprehend.
              Thanks -- maybe that explains why no one bought.

              So you're (also) saying that using the "Congrats! Your in!" line, is perfectly excusable/understandable?

              Cheers.

              -- TW
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              • Profile picture of the author Tom B
                Banned
                Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

                Thanks -- maybe that explains why no one bought.

                So you're (also) saying that using the "Congrats! Your in!" line, is perfectly excusable/understandable?

                Cheers.

                -- TW
                I think it is more understandable compared to the copy in your wso. I personally wouldn't run to a forum to make a post on how credibility is lost based on improper use of "your."

                I would hate to go through life not being able to understand or comprehend an idea just because they misused "your." I really feel bad for you to miss out on so many things.

                Edited to add: I would bet the OP email made sales. Does that make it more credible like your wso copy?
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                • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                  Michelle,
                  To answer your question, spelling and grammar generally has absolutely NO bearing on your knowledge (unless you're holding yourself out as a grammar/spelling teacher, or a writing teacher or editor). But it DOES have everything to do with your credibility.
                  Again, quoting from Merriam-Webster Online: Credible - offering reasonable grounds for being believed.

                  So, one's credentials have more to do with grammar than with experience or knowledge? That's the implication involved here. In some cases, it's not even left as an implication, but rather stated as a fact.

                  I'm going to tell you a little secret. My web page design skills suck. I use plain black text on a plain white background. I rarely use graphics more complicated than an order button, and often not even that. I send plain text emails to my subscribers, and they tend to be long.

                  All of these are things some people say are unprofessional. I'm fine with that. Somehow, the message still seems to get across.

                  Maybe it really is a matter of personal preference?

                  James,
                  My issue with the misuse of your/you're, there/their/they're, etc... is not that they got it wrong. It is when I'm actually really interested in the subject matter, taking my time to really digest what is being said, and then the wrong word is used, which changes the whole meaning of what is being said. If I'm tired enough, this causes me to have to read the sentence again, slowing my reading flow and irritating me.
                  This is the intelligent objection. And I'd be willing to bet that broken syntax is even more annoying to you.

                  This is why you need to do the best you can in your writing, folks. Not because some rule zombie says so, but because it's good for your reader.

                  Again, though, don't let imperfect skills stop you. Don't let the wombats tell you that you're stupid because you haven't mastered your craft yet. They have their own dirty little secret...

                  Very few real wombats are any good at the most important part of writing: Connecting with their readers.

                  One thing I always find funny with these threads is that the wombats think I'm arguing with them. I am not. There is no sense in debating a robot, and that's what most wombats are, when it comes to this specific topic.

                  I'm talking to the folks who haven't gotten there yet. The people who are working at communicating, and finding the going tough because of the extra potholes created by people with nothing better to do than criticize. And to the people who may not have considered that grammar and spelling are not reliable measures of a person's intelligence or experience, but could be led astray by the Grammar Cops.

                  Wombats just make excellent bad examples.

                  I also think it's humorous to read the claims that arguments in favor of understanding context and environment are meant to promote or "excuse" careless writing; to suggest that it's somehow unimportant. Read these threads when they come up. You'll often find the people who write with the most impact siding with the inexperienced writers, and against the wombats.

                  There's a reason for that.

                  Is some of the sloppiness due to laziness or unclear thinking? Sure. Of course. But hardly all, and the people who make those mistakes for other reasons deserve encouragement and education, not disparagement and dismissal.

                  Most people who've made the effort to achieve any reasonable level of competence at the trade will usually remember that.


                  Paul
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                  • Profile picture of the author James Campbell
                    Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                    This is why you need to do the best you can in your writing, folks. Not because some rule zombie says so, but because it's good for your reader.
                    Thanks for saying that.

                    The way I see it is, if you want to make an impact on everyone, there is no harm in doing your best to make it right. That way you won't lose the impact effect for readers like me who care that you got it wrong, and those who don't know whether it is right or wrong won't know any better.

                    Quality is about respect for your readers, and believing your message is important.

                    This doesn't apply to unimportant communication (chat/forum posts of little value/quick replies/text messages), but it does apply to ALL important communication.

                    Don't mess with my reading flow, or I may not want to read any further because I hate to be interrupted when I'm enjoying something.

                    James
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                    • Profile picture of the author halmo
                      Originally Posted by James Campbell View Post

                      My issue with the misuse of your/you're, there/their/they're, etc... is not that they got it wrong. It is when I'm actually really interested in the subject matter, taking my time to really digest what is being said, and then the wrong word is used, which changes the whole meaning of what is being said. If I'm tired enough, this causes me to have to read the sentence again, slowing my reading flow and irritating me. Not to mention, that irritation takes away from the power of the message.

                      James
                      Originally Posted by James Campbell View Post

                      Thanks for saying that.

                      The way I see it is, if you want to make an impact on everyone, there is no harm in doing your best to make it right. That way you won't lose the impact effect for readers like me who care that you got it wrong, and those who don't know whether it is right or wrong won't know any better.

                      Quality is about respect for your readers, and believing your message is important.

                      This doesn't apply to unimportant communication (chat/forum posts of little value/quick replies/text messages), but it does apply to ALL important communication.

                      Don't mess with my reading flow, or I may not want to read any further because I hate to be interrupted when I'm enjoying something.

                      James
                      I have been reading this whole thread, and haven't made any comments; but I really feel compelled to do so now because these two responses have been the best of all. I find the message in each of the above paragraphs important. Thank you, James.

                      This doesn't mean, in my mind, that there is absolutely no room for unintended errors. However, doing one's best reflects on his/her writing, and the little errors will be easily forgiven.
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                      • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
                        Originally Posted by halmo View Post

                        This doesn't mean, in my mind, that there is absolutely no room for unintended errors. However, doing one's best reflects on his/her writing, and the little errors will be easily forgiven.
                        Halmo, I don't think those critical of the wombats are saying we shouldn't strive to be our best. I think most are saying, in one way or another, to "quit trying to force your standards on everyone else. The world doesn't revolve around you."

                        For all they know, those they criticize may well be doing the best they are able.


                        Edited to add: Oxbloom, well said (post 215)! That was one of the more enjoyable reads in this thread.
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                        • Profile picture of the author halmo
                          Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

                          Halmo, I don't think those critical of the wombats are saying we shouldn't strive to be our best. I think most are saying, in one way or another, to "quit trying to force your standards on everyone else. The world doesn't revolve around you."

                          For all they know, those they criticize may well be doing the best they are able.
                          Yes, that's clear in the thread. It also seems to be clear that the "quit trying to force your standards" advice doesn't work in this thread either (not only in regards to e-mails sent out to IM lists). That's the reason this thread has so many posts. The wombats keep to their own "standards" even more as they are told not to -- that very behavior reinforces that they are wombats.

                          This thread has been an interesting read anyway.
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                          • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
                            Originally Posted by Ken_Caudill View Post

                            Message is the subject of that sentence, Paul. "In these threads" is an adjectival describing the subject.

                            ...and you were doing so well with that arch wordplay on exemplar.

                            Sorry, can't help myself sometimes.

                            Your Friendly Neighborhood Wombat
                            Actually, it's a prepositional phrase used as an adverb modifier.

                            Can't help myself sometimes, either.
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                • Profile picture of the author txconx
                  Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

                  I think it is more understandable compared to the copy in your wso. I personally wouldn't run to a forum to make a post on how credibility is lost based on improper use of "your."

                  I would hate to go through life not being able to understand or comprehend an idea just because they misused "your." I really feel bad for you to miss out on so many things.

                  Edited to add: I would bet the OP email made sales. Does that make it more credible like your wso copy?
                  I can't speak for anyone else, but when I see errors in sales copy, I start to wonder if the problem might also carry over into other aspects of the seller's business; i.e., whatever it is they're trying to sell to me. In my opinion, it speaks to the attention to detail that should go into any project. Most people don't spend a lot of time on details on one thing, but not another.

                  I bought a WSO from a well-known member of this forum who is ESL. It was information I needed and he has a good reputation here. I knew when I bought it that English (American or any other flavor) is not his first language. I bought it anyway.

                  For me, the videos were difficult to comprehend, not only because of his accent, but because he stumbled through the verbal presentation of the material. I went to the transcript. Whoever transcribed the videos did it nearly verbatim and I found the transcript as difficult to follow as the videos, only I could get through it faster.

                  As much as he knows and as helpful as he is on these forums, I won't buy another WSO from this member.

                  I'm sure his WSO sales were pretty solid. Did he communicate what needed to be communicated? Yes; but for me, it was a struggle to comprehend the message. There's a reason for defined language structure - it facilitates communication. When I spend money, I don't expect to have to struggle to comprehend the message.
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  • Profile picture of the author BlondieWrites
    I am often amazed at how may misspelled words and incorrect grammar I find from businesses. I can be driving down the highway and see a billboard with misspelled words. I can open a magazine or newspaper and see misspelled words.

    This is seen very much online, but I see so much of it offline as well. It's just amazing to me how many people don't know basic English. It's even worse when it's business people or businesses doing this or hiring someone to do it for them and not even noticing.

    I get business emails with misspelled words. I go to websites that outwardly look professional, until you start reading. Even popular news sites can often contain misspellings of basic words. I understand typos... we all make them. But basic English?



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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Timothy,

      The person who wrote that post was probably Filipino or Pakistani. How's your Tagalog? Urdu? Pashto?


      Cindy,

      The word "many" is usually spelled with an 'n,' which seems to be lacking in your usage in the above post. And while your syntax may not be mangled, it's definitely more rumpled than is suitable for wombatting in public.

      All y'all needs to git a lahf.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author Jerry Roberts
        If English is a second language, then we all have to cut the individual some slack. This is only common sense and courtesy.

        That said, we all know that a lot of Americans -- particularly in the Gen Y category -- have limited capacity for spelling and grammar. Blame educators if you like, or texting lingo, or whatever you like. The problem will only get worse.




        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        Timothy,

        The person who wrote that post was probably Filipino or Pakistani. How's your Tagalog? Urdu? Pashto?


        Cindy,

        The word "many" is usually spelled with an 'n,' which seems to be lacking in your usage in the above post. And while your syntax may not be mangled, it's definitely more rumpled than is suitable for wombatting in public.

        All y'all needs to git a lahf.


        Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author txconx
          Originally Posted by needtoknowmore View Post

          If English is a second language, then we all have to cut the individual some slack. This is only common sense and courtesy.
          Not if they're writing for an American or other native English-speaking audience. IMO, no excuse notes should be given for that.

          If you're an ESL marketer and your target audience is US, your English language skills need to be spot on.

          In casual correspondence, on the forums (unless you're selling something) and personal communications - muck it up all you want.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    It is quite disappointing to say the least.

    They think it's ok if their sales page or article doesn't have the red or green zigzag lines under every word, wherein they give it the go signal and publish it online.

    Or maybe that email came from an international IM marketer, where English isn't even a native language?

    However, it's not an excuse.
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  • Profile picture of the author BlondieWrites
    Please delete my post then. I'll refrain from posting here. Sorry for the trouble.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Cindy,
      Please delete my post then. I'll refrain from posting here. Sorry for the trouble.
      No trouble at all, ma'am. You are not the first, nor will you be the last, to err in the act of wombattage.

      I can turn the poetic phrase, muse lyrically in elegant prose, and wax syntactic with the best of 'em. Won't often see me tossing that stone, though, 'ceptin' maybe at Grammar Cops what git caught wit they hand inna cookie jar.

      You (in the generic sense) rant. I (in the specific first-person sense) counter-rant. Seems fair to me.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author tjcreation
        I'm not casting stones at anyone in this post. I just thought, since this is a discussion about grammar and spelling, that it might be a good place for a personal pet peeve. It seems that almost no one writing in English these days has been taught that there is no such words as "alot." Even though it gets a red squiggle line when you type it, it is still used constantly in articles, emails, etc. On that note, however, I must admit that I got a kick out of a site my son shared with me. Search for "Hyperbole and a Half: The Alot is Better Than You at Everything" if you want a laugh. I can't link it because this is only my 7th post. No, I am not associated with this site. I make no money referring this site. I just think it's hilarious!

        TJ
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        • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
          I make mistakes all the time, if I waited to have it perfect I would never write in English.

          I write in a weird mix of British institute, US slang, scientific language, and free translations from Spanish...

          When I´m writing for others, everything goes to an editor.

          When I´m writing for myself... people already know me and tend to forgive me, they seem to be more interested in the ideas than the grammar. I have the hardest time with prepositional verbs... those lil suckers!

          Sandra
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          • Profile picture of the author Jerry Roberts
            Originally Posted by Sandra Martinez View Post

            I make mistakes all the time, if I waited to have it perfect I would never write in English.

            I write in a weird mix of British institute, US slang, scientific language, and free translations from Spanish...

            Sandra

            That's about as interesting a mixture as I've seen in a while.
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              I'm going to be really disappointed if no-one can tell me where I stole that line.

              "It's a good word, and worthy of repeating."

              Anyone? Bueller?


              Paul

              Edit: The original might have ended "worth repeating."
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              • Profile picture of the author Sheryl Polomka
                Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                I'm going to be really disappointed if no-one can tell me where I stole that line.

                "It's a good word, and worthy of repeating."

                Anyone? Bueller?


                Paul

                Edit: The original might have ended "worth repeating."
                I Googled it and there are no results for that phrase

                The reference to Bueller makes me wonder if it's from Ferris Bueller's Day Off???
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                • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                  Sheryl,
                  I Googled it and there are no results for that phrase
                  I am not in the least bit surprised.
                  The reference to Bueller makes me wonder if it's from Ferris Bueller's Day Off???
                  Gack! No, ma'am. Most assuredly not.


                  Paul
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              • Profile picture of the author Ralph Moore
                Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                I'm going to be really disappointed if no-one can tell me where I stole that line.

                "It's a good word, and worthy of repeating."

                Anyone? Bueller?


                Paul

                Edit: The original might have ended "worth repeating."
                Man, that's tugging at my mind but I can't quite place it... yet.
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                • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                  Ralph
                  Man, that's tugging at my mind but I can't quite place it... yet.
                  It's likely to take one of us greybeards to get it. Hell, you'd have to be... what? Probably 39, just to stand a chance.


                  Paul
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                  • Profile picture of the author Ralph Moore
                    Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                    RalphIt's likely to take one of us greybeards to get it. Hell, you'd have to be... what? Probably 39, just to stand a chance.


                    Paul
                    Yeah, add another couple of decades and you've got it.

                    Henley, Heinlein, Burroughs, etc. are traipsing through my mind...

                    grind... grind...
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              • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
                Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                I'm going to be really disappointed if no-one can tell me where I stole that line.

                "It's a good word, and worthy of repeating."

                Anyone? Bueller?


                Paul

                Edit: The original might have ended "worth repeating."
                I don't know but it sounds kinda Python-esque...

                Tsnyder
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            • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
              I'm appalled that the OP failed to remark on the complete lack of professionalism displayed by the email sender's use of the contraction "Congrats" in a business setting.

              The world is truly going to Hell in a Bonham Carter.


              Frank
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            • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
              Originally Posted by needtoknowmore View Post

              That's about as interesting a mixture as I've seen in a while.
              hehe and I just caught a horrible typo over there. mmmmm
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              • Profile picture of the author denisjor
                Man oh man....this is one of my pet peeves. (Is "peeves" a word) will anyway, I have seen so many misspelled words that it drives me crazy. Maybe it's my old age, I don't know.

                But I think one of the big problems is that people try and type to fast. It happens to me all the time. I just go back and correct it, but maybe a lot of people don't.

                The biggest thing that gets me is when you order an eBook for about $20 or so and it is just chuck full of misspelled words and atrocious grammar. Kind of throws the credibility out the window.

                I got a sales letter email from a very well respected guru in internet marketing that was chuck full of misspelled words and some sentences didn't even make any sense. What am I to think, should I buy his product....NOT.

                I sent him an email that he needs to proof read his stuff before he sends it out. He responded very indignantly that I didn't have to buy his product if I didn't like it. I can see that he's looking out for his customers!!:confused:

                Yeah, I probably have a few misspelled words here toooooo!

                But, hey...it's all good!

                Denis
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                • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
                  Originally Posted by denisjor View Post

                  Man oh man....this is one of my pet peeves. (Is "peeves" a word) will anyway, I have seen so many misspelled words that it drives me crazy. Maybe it's my old age, I don't know.

                  But I think one of the big problems is that people try and type to fast. It happens to me all the time. I just go back and correct it, but maybe a lot of people don't.

                  The biggest thing that gets me is when you order an eBook for about $20 or so and it is just chuck full of misspelled words and atrocious grammar. Kind of throws the credibility out the window.

                  I got a sales letter email from a very well respected guru in internet marketing that was chuck full of misspelled words and some sentences didn't even make any sense. What am I to think, should I buy his product....NOT.

                  I sent him an email that he needs to proof read his stuff before he sends it out. He responded very indignantly that I didn't have to buy his product if I didn't like it. I can see that he's looking out for his customers!!:confused:

                  Yeah, I probably have a few misspelled words here toooooo!

                  But, hey...it's all good!

                  Denis
                  You must spend a fortune on Windex.



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                  • Profile picture of the author Ehanson
                    I used to work for someone who I refer to as a grammarian. He nit picked anything that was wrong with my grammar and spelling when he proofread emails he dictated to me. Even went into a very arrogant and pretentious lecture on the meaning of a word in Spanish- which he was wrong about when I pointed corrected him with a Spanish dictionary online.

                    He's one of the reasons I got involved in IM.

                    And I must have made them hit the ceiling when I hit the first page of Digg with two misspelled words in the title. I still got major media coverage for that website though. I think the meaning of what you're saying rather than if you have a missing letter or a misplaced comma is more important.

                    I would remind those who are annoyed with bad grammar or misspellings to not throw stones in glass houses and remember everyone around the world doesn't speak English as a first language.

                    Spelling matters though as you want to make your offer readable but some people place too much emphasis on it.
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        aseper,
        I just really think there are a lot of people out there who just don't know the basic rules of grammar I taught high school English for several years, and it was horrifying at times.
        Stylistically, the word 'just' should not be used twice in such close proximity. And, as far as grammar, don't periods usually separate sentences?

        Before you would reach to clear the mote from your friend's eye, remove the red pencil from your own.

        Nicole,
        In fact, one of my bigger clients actually came to me, in part, because he was sick of dealing with writers that didn't know the difference between to, two, and too!
        "Bigger?" How big is he? Stout? Huge? Grotesquely Jabba-esque? Or simply broad of shoulder? Or, perhaps, your typical client is of more Lilliputian stature? Anorexic, maybe?

        BloggingPro,
        I personally find certain grammar mistakes quite hilarious, but do agree that they have no place in a business environment.
        What about a conversational environment? Does their presence convert the landscape to an adversarial setting? Or merely a comedic venue?

        In her own private circle of Hell, Mrs Wombat awaits you all.


        Paul

        PS: (The period was intentionally left off the "Mrs." It always seems odd to me to drop one in the middle of a sentence.)
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          tjcreations,
          It seems that almost no one writing in English these days has been taught that there is no such words as "alot."
          No such word. Singular.

          Cindy,
          I do not in the least enjoy being singled out to make fun of.
          I'm not singling you out. Nor am I making fun of you. I am showing you that you are in no position to throw this particular stone, especially when it's unlikely you could compose a similarly comprehensible sentence in any of the languages likely to be spoken and written by the poster of the exemplar in question.

          Don't take it personally, ma'am. I pick on all the Grammar Cops. And I even play the game by your rules.


          Paul
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          • Profile picture of the author BlondieWrites
            Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

            tjcreations,No such word. Singular.

            Cindy,I'm not singling you out. Nor am I making fun of you. I am showing you that you are in no position to throw this particular stone, especially when it's unlikely you could compose a similarly comprehensible sentence in any of the languages likely to be spoken and written by the poster of the exemplar in question.

            Don't take it personally, ma'am. I pick on all the Grammar Cops. And I even play the game by your rules.


            Paul
            Yes, you were. That is how I read it. Just as the way you read my post was to assume I was ranting and, throwing stones, and being a grammar cop.

            It doesn't really matter. I was simply responding to a post when in fact I should have never been so silly as so assume I could make any sort of difference in anyone's life by doing so.

            Thank you so much for reminding me of how silly (stupid) I really am. I have not felt like a fool and like dirt in around 30 years. Thanks for reminding me of who I am.
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            • Profile picture of the author rvdp
              Originally Posted by BlondieWrites View Post

              Yes, you were. That is how I read it. Just as the way you read my post was to assume I was ranting and, throwing stones, and being a grammar cop.

              It doesn't really matter. I was simply responding to a post when in fact I should have never been so silly as so assume I could make any sort of difference in anyone's life by doing so.

              Thank you so much for reminding me of how silly (stupid) I really am. I have not felt like a fool and like dirt in around 30 years. Thanks for reminding me of who I am.
              Why so serious? The guy friendly pointed out a grammar mistake in your post... no big deal. Try laughing more.
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              • Profile picture of the author Sheryl Polomka
                Originally Posted by rvdp View Post

                why so serious?
                I just had this vision of Heath Ledger as 'The Joker' saying that
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              • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                rvdp,
                Why so serious? The guy friendly pointed out a grammar mistake in your post... no big deal. Try laughing more.
                Grammar Cops are often serious beyond what's warranted. Such is the nature of the beast.

                You're right in suggesting that I intended my comments in friendly, if somewhat pointed, jest. I wonder if the target of her scorn, though, might not feel some pain at being abused for his efforts in a second tongue?

                Still, his efforts didn't yield perfection, so perhaps his feelings don't merit concern?

                Feh.


                Paul
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            • Profile picture of the author Jerry Roberts
              I don't think anyone here is trying to make fun of you or to feel bad. Just take it as light criticism, learn from it, and move on. Maybe something that is pointed out here could help you down the road. Just my .02.


              Originally Posted by BlondieWrites View Post

              Yes, you were. That is how I read it. Just as the way you read my post was to assume I was ranting and, throwing stones, and being a grammar cop.

              It doesn't really matter. I was simply responding to a post when in fact I should have never been so silly as so assume I could make any sort of difference in anyone's life by doing so.

              Thank you so much for reminding me of how silly (stupid) I really am. I have not felt like a fool and like dirt in around 30 years. Thanks for reminding me of who I am.
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        • Profile picture of the author NicoleBeckett
          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post


          Nicole,"Bigger?" How big is he? Stout? Huge? Grotesquely Jabba-esque? Or simply broad of shoulder? Or, perhaps, your typical client is of more Lilliputian stature? Anorexic, maybe?
          Touche!
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  • Profile picture of the author BlondieWrites
    Well I am sorry that my post or posts seem to have been ranting. Silly me, I thought I was helping.

    Please be assured that I will not make the mistake again, in either case.

    I greatly enjoy helping and trying to help people. I do not in the least enjoy being singled out to make fun of.
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  • Profile picture of the author O0o0O
    Entirely too many people these days are saying "your" instead of "you're". It's kind of annoying when you know the correct way to say it. You begin to wonder if these people are making this mistake on purpose, or truly don't know their contractions.
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  • Profile picture of the author Caleb Spilchen
    I believe Paul's word is wombat.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Caleb,
      I believe Paul's word is wombat.
      It's a good word, and worthy of repeating.

      Go ahead. Tell me where I stole that line.


      Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author donsean
    It's unbelievable to me the plethora of bad grammar and misspelling I've seen in advertising as well. It comes across as unprofessional and elementary imo.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      donsean,
      It's unbelievable to me the plethora of bad grammar and misspelling I've seen in advertising as well. It comes across as unprofessional and elementary imo.
      [splorf!]

      Anyone want to explain to Junior Wombat here just how badly he misused the word 'plethora' in that sentence? I'm afraid if I do it I'll draw blood.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author Sheryl Polomka
        Originally Posted by donsean View Post

        It's unbelievable to me the plethora of bad grammar and misspelling I've seen in advertising as well. It comes across as unprofessional and elementary imo.
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        donsean,[splorf!]

        Anyone want to explain to Junior Wombat here just how badly he misused the word 'plethora' in that sentence? I'm afraid if I do it I'll draw blood.


        Paul
        lol, I love the sentence "It comes across as unprofessional and elementary imo" and how someone can use the words 'unprofessional and elementary' followed by 'imo'
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Sheryl,
          and how someone can use the words 'unprofessional and elementary' followed by 'imo'
          And without the requisite comma! Good heavens...

          Still doesn't get into the worst of it. That usage of 'plethora' is a grammaric sin worthy of Mrs Wombat's most fearsome wrath.


          Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    I thought Paul was referring to the term Wombat, on regards to where he stole that line.

    I was guessing Scent of a Woman but it's a wild guess.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Jun,
      I thought Paul was referring to the term Wombat, on regards to where he stole that line.

      I was guessing Scent of a Woman but it's a wild guess.
      Nope. The term 'wombat,' as used in this thread, is my own creation. See The Wombat Report for the full explanation. And one of my funnier bits of expositional ranting, too.

      No, the phrase was based on the works of a writer far greater than I ever aspire to match.


      Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author laurenswuyts
    Well I hate it also, when people are struggling with grammar. but don't blame them. Most of the Internet Marketers don't have English as their first learned language
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  • Profile picture of the author Sheryl Polomka
    Oh well I had a go - I have no idea where you stole that line!
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Could it be Allen?
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  • Profile picture of the author Tom B
    Banned
    Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

    I know there have been many posts about this, but I just saw an email subject line with only 3 words -- and a full 1/3 of them were misspelled!

    "Congrats - Your in!"

    (((sigh)))

    -- TW

    PS: Recipients of emails like this have trouble taking the senders seriously -- and I don't blame them.
    This is a marketing forum. The English forum is down the hall.

    Personally, I prefer to tailor my message to my prospect and not worry so much about grammar and spelling. You would be surprised at how much money I made by using "congrats."

    No one takes me serious so no loss there.

    Please, stop feeding the Myers.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Thomas,
      This is a marketing forum. The English forum is down the hall.
      Nope. This is "Getting hit on the head" lessons.
      Please, stop feeding the Myers.
      [chuckle] Apropos, sir. Nicely turned.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author cjreynolds
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        Thomas,Nope. This is "Getting hit on the head" lessons.[chuckle]
        I caught that reference - Monty Python!
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        I just added this sig so I can refer to it in my posts...

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    • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
      Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

      Personally, I prefer to tailor my message to my prospect and not worry so much about grammar and spelling. You would be surprised at how much money I made by using "congrats."
      Umm, Thomas, "Congrats" wasn't the 1/3 of the headline I was talking about.

      Also, to the person who said people whose mother tongue is not English should be given a pass, I disagree. When in Rome, do as the Romans. If they are sending emails to prospects in America, it is their responsibility to speak MY language -- if they want me to take them seriously, that is.

      There's a difference between writing as one speaks, and just plain misspelling. Being conversational and making grammatical mistakes for that purpose can attract people and add believability. Misspelling words does not, and cannot accomplish any of that, as far as I can tell.

      Also, one need not be perfect to point out imperfection.
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      • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
        Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

        Also, to the person who said people whose mother tongue is not English should be given a pass, I disagree. When in Rome, do as the Romans. If they are sending emails to prospects in America, it is their responsibility to speak MY language -- if they want me to take them seriously, that is.
        Do you have a list? I'm just curious how many languages you send your emails out in, to accomodate all the international subscribers, since it's your responsibility to speak THEIR language.
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        • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
          Originally Posted by Mike McAleer View Post

          Haha. Some guys don't even know how to spell... Ridiculous!

          I would always try to make sure I am spelling something right.
          Keep trying. (I counted three mistakes right away)


          Originally Posted by Jun Balona View Post

          Paul, I give up. Either you tell us whose line it was, or as a suggestion, post it as a thread on Member Contests and Challenges. A nice prize wouldn't be half bad.
          He already did, in Post #63.

          ~Michael
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        • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
          Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

          Do you have a list? I'm just curious how many languages you send your emails out in, to accomodate all the international subscribers, since it's your responsibility to speak THEIR language.
          I disagree. I'm sitting here, minding my own business, in the land of English. I, in the land of English, receive an offer to subscribe. I, (still sitting in the land of English) decide, yes, I will opt in. If, all these transactions take place in the land of English, then it is the responsibility of the marketER to speak that language properly. Makes no difference which country the marketer or the prospect is *physically* sitting in.

          This is exactly such a case. All communication, from the start, took place in the land of English. Then I receive an email, the subject line of which is, "Congrats! Your in!"

          FAIL.

          That's not merely an obscure, little tiny fail. That's a big ol' HONKING, in-your-face fail!

          If you are marketing (worldwide) within the "borders" of the land of English, it is *your* responsibility to speak English properly.

          When I market, I'm in the land of English. There's no need for me to speak other languages -- no matter what country my prospects actually happen to be sitting in. When someone interacts with me, he or she is agreeing to do so within the "borders" of the land of English.

          If someone would rather interact in the land of Tongan, he or she needs to enter that arena, in the first place.
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          • Profile picture of the author Tom B
            Banned
            Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

            I disagree. I'm sitting here, minding my own business, in the land of English. I, in the land of English, receive an offer to subscribe. I, (still sitting in the land of English) decide, yes, I will opt in. If, all these transactions take place in the land of English, then it is the responsibility of the marketER to speak that language properly. Makes no difference which country the marketer or the prospect is *physically* sitting in.

            This is exactly such a case. All communication, from the start, took place in the land of English. Then I receive an email, the subject line of which is, "Congrats! Your in!"

            FAIL.

            If you are marketing (worldwide) within the "borders" of the land of English, it is *your* responsibility to speak English properly.

            When I market, I'm in the land of English. There's no need for me to speak other languages -- no matter what country my prospects actually happen to be sitting in. When someone interacts with me, he or she is agreeing to do so within the "borders" of the land of English.

            If someone would rather interact in the land of Tongan, he or she needs to enter that arena, in the first place.
            Timothy, I think you fail. For some reason you think people need to do things your way. Sorry, but no.

            I wouldn't even be surprised if the person has a more profitable business compared to you.

            You keep sitting in your land of English while the rest of us make money with bad grammar and terrible spelling.

            We don't mind you feeling superior.
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            • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
              Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

              Also, to the person who said people whose mother tongue is not English should be given a pass, I disagree. When in Rome, do as the Romans. If they are sending emails to prospects in America, it is their responsibility to speak MY language -- if they want me to take them seriously, that is.
              Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

              I'm sitting here, minding my own business, in the land of English. I, in the land of English, receive an offer to subscribe. I, (still sitting in the land of English) decide, yes, I will opt in. If, all these transactions take place in the land of English, then it is the responsibility of the marketER to speak that language properly. Makes no difference which country the marketer or the prospect is *physically* sitting in.

              If you are marketing (worldwide) within the "borders" of the land of English, it is *your* responsibility to speak English properly.

              When I market, I'm in the land of English. There's no need for me to speak other languages -- no matter what country my prospects actually happen to be sitting in. When someone interacts with me, he or she is agreeing to do so within the "borders" of the land of English.

              If someone would rather interact in the land of Tongan, he or she needs to enter that arena, in the first place.
              If it "makes no difference which country the marketer of the prospect is physically sitting in", then what determines this apparently virtual "land of English" that you live in?

              By your contradicting statements above, one would have to come to the conclusion that the "land of English" must revolve directly around your person.

              When it comes to you being the subscriber, the marketer needs to make the effort to perfect his language so as to not offend your seemingly delicate sensibilities.

              Yet, when you are the marketer, you don't see the need to perfect their language.

              I would have to say that I have never seen anyone attain quite as high a level of arrogance in my life.
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              • Profile picture of the author Oxbloom
                Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

                If it "makes no difference which country the marketer of the prospect is physically sitting in", then what determines this apparently virtual "land of English" that you live in?

                By your contradicting statements above, one would have to come to the conclusion that the "land of English" must revolve directly around your person.

                When it comes to you being the subscriber, the marketer needs to make the effort to perfect his language so as to not offend your seemingly delicate sensibilities.

                Yet, when you are the marketer, you don't see the need to perfect their language.

                I would have to say that I have never seen anyone attain quite as high a level of arrogance in my life.
                Not sure I'm seeing the contradiction or the arrogance.

                TW's whole message seems to be this: be reasonably proficient with the lingua franca of your target audience if you want to be taken seriously.

                Naturally, just by the nature of its being a lingua franca, you get some built in leeway. But fall on the wrong side of the thin line between "good enough," and "not good enough," and you alienate some folks.

                That was probably all the thread was intended to be about, before it turned into the monstrosity it's become.
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                • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
                  Originally Posted by Oxbloom View Post

                  Not sure I'm seeing the contradiction or the arrogance.

                  TW's whole message seems to be this: be reasonably proficient with the lingua franca of your target audience if you want to be taken seriously.

                  Naturally, just by the nature of its being a lingua franca, you get some built in leeway. But fall on the wrong side of the thin line between "good enough," and "not good enough," and you alienate some folks.

                  That was probably all the thread was intended to be about, before it turned into the monstrosity it's become.
                  here is the thing:

                  language is a construct created to communicate people

                  if the communication takes place, then it is serving the purpose

                  what it looks from my South American´s gal perspective is that you don´t like what the dude has to say, so you are hanging from the small print.

                  if the dude were giving you great value, awesome ideas, spectacular strategies you can implement in your business, would you care?
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                  • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
                    Originally Posted by Sandra Martinez View Post

                    here is the thing:

                    language is a construct created to communicate people

                    if the communication takes place, then it is serving the purpose

                    Ok, I geUss -- I'll tkae u aT yur wurd.

                    2+2=7 (and by 7, I, of course, mean 4)
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                    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                      Timothy,
                      2+2=7 (and by 7, I, of course, mean 4)
                      Math is a form of grammar, but the grammar of the spoken or printed word is a different thing. Your analogy is not only invalid, it's abusive of the concepts involved.

                      You do yourself no service by stepping into such inane territory.


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                      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                        Jun,

                        No apology is needed or warranted. You are free to hold whatever beliefs on the subject you feel will serve you. I certainly didn't take it personally.

                        I will always rebut any statement made here that looks like that, on the basis that it tends to push down the effort people make at communication. It's also illogical, but I'd have no time for anything else if I tried to correct every illogical statement I heard in a day.


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                        • Profile picture of the author Gail_Curran
                          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                          I will always rebut any statement made here that looks like that, on the basis that it tends to push down the effort people make at communication.
                          You should have said that in the beginning instead of amusing yourself by putting other people down.

                          Why is it such a crime around here to like and appreciate the English language?
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                          • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
                            Originally Posted by Gail_Curran View Post

                            You should have said that in the beginning instead of amusing yourself by putting other people down.

                            Why is it such a crime around here to like and appreciate the English language?
                            It is not a crime. In fact, a lot of us aren't bothered by mistakes in the language BECAUSE it IS so wonderful. We understand that it's nearly impossible to get it right every time. So, if we see a small mistake or two, it's not a condemnation of the person in error, but rather a reminder of the complexity of this amazing language we call English.

                            All the best,
                            Michael
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                            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                              Gail,
                              You should have said that in the beginning instead of amusing yourself by putting other people down.
                              I am putting down a behavior. If people want to personalize that, that's their choice. Wombatting is sufficiently destructive that I'm prepared to consider that an acceptable risk.
                              Why is it such a crime around here to like and appreciate the English language?
                              Did you really just ask that of me?

                              Madam, you will encounter few people in your lifetime who enjoy and appreciate the language more than I. I simply don't think it's appropriate to put the strictures of grammar ahead of the people using it to communicate. Those are my priorities on the matter. You are welcome to differ if you like.

                              Oh... By the way... I did say that earlier, when I linked to the Wombat Report. It's all in there.


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                      • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
                        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                        Timothy,Math is a form of grammar, but the grammar of the spoken or printed word is a different thing. Your analogy is not only invalid, it's abusive of the concepts involved.
                        Eye sea -- sorrie.
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                    • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
                      Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

                      Ok, I geUss -- I'll tkae u aT yur wurd.

                      2+2=7 (and by 7, I, of course, mean 4)
                      Can I ask in which base are you doing the addition? is it base 10, I presume. Well, I might find a base where actually 2+2 is 7. mmmm a fractional base, that should be interesting...

                      It is always a matter of agreeing on the rules and follow them as much as possible.

                      Let me tell you a lil thing. I speak - besides Spanish - Portuguese, some French, a pinch of German, understand Italian, and the tiny amount of English you can see. From all those languages, English is the simpler from the grammatical standpoint, but one of the most unnatural from the phonetic construction standpoint. And it allows misunderstandings, other languages don´t. One typical example from Epistemology of Science, the phrase:

                      the scientist made the robot fast while he ate.

                      it is a non resolved phrase. You simply can´t do that in other languages.

                      I find it fascinating.

                      there is a very common mistake I find in some people, specially those who claim some type of superiority for being nice boys/girls and follow the rules: they tend to confuse depth of thinking with expression ability.

                      it is true to certain extent that the thought process is tied up with the language development while the language is developing. But once your brain is already developed in a certain language, you could learn another language as a second (or 5th) language and find the way to make the message go through even when a limited vocabulary or a limited knowledge of the details.

                      of course, to communicate you need 2 who actually want to communicate. So if the other person is looking for the small print, to try to communicate is kind of a waste of time.

                      Sandra
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                • Profile picture of the author Oxbloom
                  Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                  Oxbloom,

                  Methinks you fail to understand the meaning of the word 'sanctimony.' To whit, according to Merriam Webster Online: noun: "affected or hypocritical holiness." The reference in this case is to the affected and hypocritical righteousness of the various involved Grammar Cops, and their demonstrated lack of competence in the field in question.

                  It is generally considered useful to understand a thing before you correct it.


                  Paul
                  Hi Paul.

                  No misunderstanding here, good sir.

                  Sanctimony can not logically be mitigated by competence in this case, because were there competence, there would be no hypocrisy, and thus no sanctimony. Nothing to mitigate. Your sentence was a logical train wreck because you didn't understand the nuance of the word you were using.

                  Hence my comment about the irony meter. Normally, I wouldn't care in the slightest. But of all the things to muck up after sending a poster scurrying away in tears for the mistakes you couldn't resist pointing out...

                  Funny ol' world, sometimes.
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                • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                  For those who may not yet grok in fullness, the purpose of playing "Pin the tail on the wombat" is simple: To remind the Grammar Cops that we're all human, all prone to error, and all more dependent on communication than on prescription.

                  When you deal with a broad spectrum of people from diverse societies and cultures, understanding requires more than mere comprehension. It calls for an appreciation of the effort made by the various people involved to overcome their differences in education, background and language in order to share and learn and grow together.

                  Wombats are a festering pustule in the body cooperative. The cure is to reflect back on them the scorn, ridicule and shame they would apply to those who don't meet their lofty goal of mindless following. The appropriate method of administration is simple correction and mild humor.

                  True wombats have a strong aversion to laughing at their own foibles.

                  The rules of grammar exist for a simple and clear purpose: To enable people to understand each other's messages. To communicate effectively. If the rules get in the way, throw the damned book out and focus on communicating.

                  If someone's grammar and syntax are so bad they can't make themselves understood, their messages will be deleted here. English is, as Oxbloom suggests, the lingua franca. There is, however, a rather wide gulf between 'incomprehensible' and 'a little off.'

                  Most of us are at least a little off.


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                  • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                    Oxbloom,
                    Sanctimony can not logically be mitigated by competence in this case, because were there competence, there would be no hypocrisy, and thus no sanctimony. Nothing to mitigate. Your sentence was a logical train wreck because you didn't understand the nuance of the word you were using.
                    Re-read my corrections of the grammar of various wombats in the thread. The competence was clearly missing, yet the sanctimony remained.

                    Thus, the hypocrisy.

                    And one can be sanctimonious and competent at the same time. All that is required is the belief that one's competence implies an inherent superiority of character. That was evident in many of the comments.

                    Note that 'hypocritical' is part of an 'or' pair in that definition...

                    As far as nuance, I'm prepared to debate the colloquial aspects of the word, if you like.


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          • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
            Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

            I disagree. I'm sitting here, minding my own business, in the land of English. I, in the land of English, receive an offer to subscribe. I, (still sitting in the land of English) decide, yes, I will opt in. If, all these transactions take place in the land of English, then it is the responsibility of the marketER to speak that language properly. Makes no difference which country the marketer or the prospect is *physically* sitting in.

            This is exactly such a case. All communication, from the start, took place in the land of English. Then I receive an email, the subject line of which is, "Congrats! Your in!"

            FAIL.

            If you are marketing (worldwide) within the "borders" of the land of English, it is *your* responsibility to speak English properly.

            When I market, I'm in the land of English. There's no need for me to speak other languages -- no matter what country my prospects actually happen to be sitting in. When someone interacts with me, he or she is agreeing to do so within the "borders" of the land of English.

            If someone would rather interact in the land of Tongan, he or she needs to enter that arena, in the first place.
            never register to my list then sir... you are going to have a heart attack.
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            • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
              You guys are hilarious!

              As a writer and published author, bad spelling and grammar are some of my pet peeves. They REALLY grate on my nerves. It's an epidemic, made worse by the ease with which ANYONE can publish anything.

              The spelling and grammar here is so often ATROCIOUS. (Yes, that should have been italicized, not capitalized. )

              I'm not a grammar cop though, because I make mistakes too.

              My philosophy is that substance trumps form, but it needs be governed by professionalism.

              Today's communication (business and personal) is all about relationships and being social. So much of our communication today is driven by social media and therefore, it often should be more informal and conversational.

              BUT...it also needs to be governed by professionalism, too. And that means proper spelling and grammar

              In the OP's example, I find Congrats ok. Yes, it' slang, but it's warm and personal. But the sender loses all credibility with me by misspelling you're.

              Also, consider the medium you're using when sending out a message. I find spelling and grammar mistakes a little more forgivable in a forum, chat, or text. Those media are much more "in the moment" than others. I'm not as forgiving when they're in an e-mail, article, report or book though.

              Bottom line: consider your audience and medium, but if you want to be taken seriously, always err on the side of caution and professionalism.

              Michelle

              P.S. Text-speak drives me BANANAS. I REALLY don't like it, even in texts, but I can overlook it (for the most part). But PLEASE don't use text-speak ("r u going 2 come?") anywhere other than in a TEXT! Arrgghh!

              (As an aside, I was first introduced to texting through an ex-boyfriend. I'd just gotten my first cell phone and he was the one who taught me to text. I was HIGHLY impressed that he used almost complete sentences and his grammar and spelling were nearly impeccable. To this day, I've never forgotten it.)
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              • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
                Originally Posted by Nightengale View Post

                BUT...it also needs to be governed by professionalism, too. And that means proper spelling and grammar
                Ironic, no?
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                • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
                  But the sender loses all credibility with me by misspelling you're.
                  If the person is composing an ad for writing services, I might understand that. But would I really lose "all credibility" in any other niche because of a misspelled word?

                  What would my spelling error have to do with my knowledge of internet marketing? Or crocheting? Or any other topic unrelated to my use of the language?
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                  • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
                    Ok, maybe not ALL. But pretty close.

                    Actually, it depends on the context and other factors. If it's spam, (unsolicited commercial e-mail), they automatically have NO credibility with me, regardless of any other factor.

                    If it's from a list I opted in to (and have never bought from them or have any other experience with them), my chances of buying from them just went WAY down.

                    If it's from someone who was recommended to me by someone else I trust, they're in a much stronger position, but their credibility has still taken a big hit. If it's just one typo and the rest of the copy is more or less error-free, then I'll probably overlook it.

                    If the sender has other weighty credentials (and the rest of their message is more or less error-free), I'll also probably overlook it.

                    (To me, there's a difference between the occasional typo and copy riddled with grammar and spelling mistakes.)

                    I could go on and on, but essentially, it depends on the error itself, the number of errors and the context. To a certain degree, it really IS in the eye of the beholder.

                    To answer your question, spelling and grammar generally has absolutely NO bearing on your knowledge (unless you're holding yourself out as a grammar/spelling teacher, or a writing teacher or editor). But it DOES have everything to do with your credibility.

                    Since this forum is all about marketing and making money though, credibility IS extremely important, making proper spelling and grammar VERY relevant. (Again, the rules are a little more flexible depending on the medium.) We could debate whether you should be judged on your spelling and grammar from here 'til eternity.

                    I try to make decisions and take actions based on "what is", not on what "should be" though. Like it or not, we're all judged based on our grammar and spelling (to a certain degree, at least). So paying attention to your spelling and grammar is the better part of wisdom.

                    Michelle

                    Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

                    If the person is composing an ad for writing services, I might understand that. But would I really lose "all credibility" in any other niche because of a misspelled word?

                    What would my spelling error have to do with my knowledge of internet marketing? Or crocheting? Or any other topic unrelated to my use of the language?
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                    • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
                      Originally Posted by Nightengale View Post

                      If it's spam, (unsolicited commercial e-mail), they automatically have NO credibility with me, regardless of any other factor.
                      If it's spam, the sender lost all credibility with me before s/he clicks the "send" button.


                      I try to make decisions and take actions based on "what is", not on what "should be" though. Like it or not, we're all judged based on our grammar and spelling (to a certain degree, at least). So paying attention to your spelling and grammar is the better part of wisdom.
                      This goes back to a point I made in an earlier post. We all have our own criteria (reality) that we base our actions and decisions on, but we can't force our reality on others.

                      I do agree with you that spelling and grammar contributes to or takes away from our credibility ... with some people. Others, not so much. A great many people, perhaps a majority, either wouldn't know if a mistake was made or wouldn't care.

                      Paying attention to spelling and grammar is the better part of wisdom because the worse yours is, the more distance you place between your message and the sale, but again, only for some people. Still, it's wise not to do things that whittle away at your pool of prospective buyers.
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                • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
                  Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

                  Ironic, no?
                  Touche!

                  Yes, I have a bad habit of beginning my sentences with prepositions. That's for emphasis and a choice I deliberately make.

                  Again, I say, consider the audience and MEDIUM. (It's a FORUM.)

                  And that's all I have to say about that.

                  Michelle
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                  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
                    Originally Posted by Nightengale View Post

                    Touche!

                    Yes, I have a bad habit of beginning my sentences with prepositions. That's for emphasis and a choice I deliberately make.

                    Again, I say, consider the audience and MEDIUM. (It's a FORUM.)

                    And that's all I have to say about that.

                    Michelle
                    Michelle, I wouldn't know a preposition from a supposition. I was referring to the missing period at the end of the second sentence. You know, the one where you refer to proper grammar.

                    I wouldn't hold it against you though. I prefer to consider the value of the ideas being presented over the presentation of the ideas. The ideas are a better indicator of intelligence to me. You are clearly intelligent, despite the missing period.
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                    • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
                      Dennis,

                      Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

                      Michelle, I wouldn't know a preposition from a supposition. I was referring to the missing period at the end of the second sentence. You know, the one where you refer to proper grammar.
                      I assumed you were referring to the tautology (or redundancy, as you'd say in the US) of using both "also" and "too" in the same sentence.

                      Gee. This wombating's a full-time job.


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                      • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
                        Originally Posted by Frank Donovan View Post

                        Dennis,



                        I assumed you were referring to the tautology (or redundancy, as you'd say in the US) of using both "also" and "too" in the same sentence.

                        Gee. This wombating's a full-time job.


                        Frank
                        lol - Frank, it just goes to show you ... and I'll leave it at that.
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                    • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
                      Why, thank you sir! I agree: substance should generally be considered over spelling and grammar. And the medium needs to be considered too. (Unless the spelling and grammar are so atrocious that it overwhelms the message, which is often the case.)

                      My point still stands though: like it or not, we ARE judged by our spelling and grammar. So be mindful of how you write and what image that projects.

                      I knew I should never have jumped into this debate though. Somehow, I got sucked into pointing out my own (further) mistakes (that maybe nobody might have otherwise noticed), AFTER joining the rant about proper spelling/grammar.

                      (What's the icon for embarrassed? is the best I can do.)

                      I really SHOULD shut up now...

                      Michelle

                      Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

                      Michelle, I wouldn't know a preposition from a supposition. I was referring to the missing period at the end of the second sentence. You know, the one where you refer to proper grammar.

                      I wouldn't hold it against you though. I prefer to consider the value of the ideas being presented over the presentation of the ideas. The ideas are a better indicator of intelligence to me. You are clearly intelligent, despite the missing period.
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              • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
                Originally Posted by Nightengale View Post

                You guys are hilarious!

                As a writer and published author, bad spelling and grammar are some of my pet peeves. They REALLY grate on my nerves. It's an epidemic, made worse by the ease with which ANYONE can publish anything.

                The spelling and grammar here is so often ATROCIOUS. (Yes, that should have been italicized, not capitalized. )

                I'm not a grammar cop though, because I make mistakes too.

                My philosophy is that substance trumps form, but it needs be governed by professionalism.

                Today's communication (business and personal) is all about relationships and being social. So much of our communication today is driven by social media and therefore, it often should be more informal and conversational.

                BUT...it also needs to be governed by professionalism, too. And that means proper spelling and grammar

                In the OP's example, I find Congrats ok. Yes, it' slang, but it's warm and personal. But the sender loses all credibility with me by misspelling you're.

                Also, consider the medium you're using when sending out a message. I find spelling and grammar mistakes a little more forgivable in a forum, chat, or text. Those media are much more "in the moment" than others. I'm not as forgiving when they're in an e-mail, article, report or book though.

                TW comments: It's really a matter of FILTERS. It reflects on the professionalism of the sender/creator if it is apparent they are not putting their "stuff" through any BASIC filters. If they are not putting their stuff through a filter as BASIC as spelling + grammar, then they may not be putting their stuff through other basic filters, perhaps resulting in "letting through" crappy IDEAS, for example.

                Not bothering to fix (or even find out if it is wrong in the first place) a THREE WORD HEADLINE makes me assume that the writer's attitude was something akin to: "Whatever." What's stopping me from assuming the writer's attitude will be the same throughout the product/service itself?
                I can see clearly that the writer is "letting through" (his/her FILTER(S)) things that should NOT be allowed "through."

                Analogy: (and this is just an EXAMPLE I'm using for the purposes of ILLUSTRATION -- I'm NOT trying to make this political!!) Some people judge Obama because he is a smoker. The thinking being, if he can't get something as BASIC as that correct (under control, etc.), what OTHER things might he get incorrect? At some point in his life, he let "starting smoking" through his personal "FILTER" (pardon the pun!).

                Another analogy: Let's say I have an upcoming important business meeting in the boardroom of a large corporation. And let's say it's the morning of THE BIG DAY, and when preparing for the meeting, I neglect to do something as basic as this: PUT ON A SHIRT.

                Anyone who composes a mass-emailed message with the subject line, "Congrats! Your in!" should not be surprised when the results are similar to stepping into a board meeting, sans shirt. It's a SPECTRUM -- there are little, forgivable mistakes -- and then there are GIANT/OBVIOUS mistakes. THEY are the ones that make ya go "HHhmmmm?"

                Bottom line: consider your audience and medium, but if you want to be taken seriously, always err on the side of caution and professionalism.

                Michelle
                My point(s) exactly!!

                Thanks Michelle.

                -- TW

                PS: Did I see elsewhere in this thread someone telling another warrior that she missed her period?
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                • Profile picture of the author Nightengale
                  TW, I cannot believe you just said that!

                  Apropos of nothing....

                  I'm going through some serious financial difficulties right now (long story) and it's NOT good. A lot of people are going through financial difficulties though (lost jobs, etc.) and we see a lot of "Help! SOS! How can I make $10,000 in 24 hrs?" type posts.

                  I was engaged last year, but we broke up. (Yes, I lost my job AND my engagement broke all in the same year.) I was just thinking yesterday that if I'd gotten pregnant, I'd be having a baby right about now. THIS MONTH! Yikes!

                  Financial difficulties aside, I'm thankful for small favors. Things COULD be worse.... I'm not even on anti-depressants!

                  Michelle
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                • Profile picture of the author Cali16
                  Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post


                  TW comments: It's really a matter of FILTERS. It reflects on the professionalism of the sender/creator if it is apparent they are not putting their "stuff" through any BASIC filters. If they are not putting their stuff through a filter as BASIC as spelling + grammar, then they may not be putting their stuff through other basic filters, perhaps resulting in "letting through" crappy IDEAS, for example.

                  Not bothering to fix (or even find out if it is wrong in the first place) a THREE WORD HEADLINE makes me assume that the writer's attitude was something akin to: "Whatever." What's stopping me from assuming the writer's attitude will be the same throughout the product/service itself? I can see clearly that the writer is "letting through" (his/her FILTER(S)) things that should NOT be allowed "through."
                  Timothy, you do remember the saying about making assumptions....? (Oops - I put an extra period in my ellipses - shoot me for such an egregious error! )

                  Sarcasm aside, I think you are making a huge leap here to assume a writer's overall attitude is "whatever" based on a grammatical / spelling error. If you go through life making assumptions like that on a regular basis, you are missing out on so much (not to mention, you're being really anal). As someone mentioned above, the error could have been made because the person was tired, in a hurry, or multi-tasking. Did any of those things cross your mind before you jumped to your above-stated conclusion?

                  Some of the sharpest and most respected people on this forum (in terms of their IM knowledge, experience, and contribution) don't have perfect grammar or spelling. I won't name names, but several come to mind as I type this, and I'm pretty sure their bank accounts aren't suffering as a result.

                  Should we all (like you) assume they have no credibility because they don't spend a lot of time proofreading each post or email they write or making sure their products are 100% error-free to satisfy (to use Paul's term) the "wombats"? Well, IMO, that would be foolish. Sure, I notice the errors, but I keep on reading because the content is valuable. What I've learned is that there are a lot of brilliant people in the world who really don't give a flying rat's a** about proper grammar and perfect spelling. I can live with that. It may be annoying at times, but not so much that I write them off and refuse to respect the fact that I can learn much from them.

                  As for Paul's statement - "Very few real wombats are any good at the most important part of writing: Connecting with their readers." That is very true. People who are anal and always critical have a very difficult time relating to (or getting along with) others - and their writing will typically reflect that fact.

                  Btw, feel free to dissect my grammar and spelling in this post. There may be some errors - it's late and it's not really my highest priority at the moment.
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                  • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
                    Originally Posted by Cali16 View Post

                    Timothy, you do remember the saying about making assumptions....? (Oops - I put an extra period in my ellipses - shoot me for such an egregious error! )

                    Sarcasm aside, I think you are making a huge leap here to assume a writer's overall attitude is "whatever" based on a grammatical / spelling error. If you go through life making assumptions like that on a regular basis, you are missing out on so much (not to mention, you're being really anal). As someone mentioned above, the error could have been made because the person was tired, in a hurry, or multi-tasking. Did any of those things cross your mind before you jumped to your above-stated conclusion?

                    Some of the sharpest and most respected people on this forum (in terms of their IM knowledge, experience, and contribution) don't have perfect grammar or spelling. I won't name names, but several come to mind as I type this, and I'm pretty sure their bank accounts aren't suffering as a result.

                    Should we all (like you) assume they have no credibility because they don't spend a lot of time proofreading each post or email they write or making sure their products are 100% error-free to satisfy (to use Paul's term) the "wombats"? Well, IMO, that would be foolish. Sure, I notice the errors, but I keep on reading because the content is valuable. What I've learned is that there are a lot of brilliant people in the world who really don't give a flying rat's a** about proper grammar and perfect spelling. I can live with that. It may be annoying at times, but not so much that I write them off and refuse to respect the fact that I can learn much from them.

                    As for Paul's statement - "Very few real wombats are any good at the most important part of writing: Connecting with their readers." That is very true. People who are anal and always critical have a very difficult time relating to (or getting along with) others - and their writing will typically reflect that fact.

                    Btw, feel free to dissect my grammar and spelling in this post. There may be some errors - it's late and it's not really my highest priority at the moment.
                    It's a spectrum. It's not a case of errors or no errors. Imperfection or perfection.

                    Perfection is pretty much unattainable.

                    It's about what *level* the error(s) reach, on the error-o-meter.

                    Not knowing the difference between your + you're, pins the needle.

                    (see "Architetc" analogy, above)

                    Cheers.

                    -- TW
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        Timothy,
        Also, one need not be perfect to point out imperfection.
        Indeed. I don't think I'd be amiss, however, in suggesting that sanctimony is mitigated somewhat by competence.


        Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Jun,
          Ok, with respects to the OP, we, unknowingly to some, tend to have this "WTF!" reaction every time we stumble on errors on emails et al. But at least we know halfway that the owner wasn't passionate about what he or she is selling to us (if he is he would have taken care of it before publishing it).
          I don't dare express my true reaction to that. I'd have to ban myself for a month.

          Let me just say that I find that to be one of the most illogical, ill-conceived and arrogant sentiments I've yet heard expressed in this or any other forum. And you are far from the first to suggest it.

          It is, in fact, the very thought which inspired the writing of the Wombat Report, and the driving force behind my passion for wombat hunting.

          Be grateful I practice the sport as "catch and release."

          Michael,
          And that Paul Myers cat can flat out write.
          Nope. Paul Myers' cat is a Dumbass, in both name and nature.

          Sorry. I couldn't resist.

          Tina,
          Do you have a list? I'm just curious how many languages you send your emails out in, to accommodate all the international subscribers, since it's your responsibility to speak THEIR language.
          Best. Answer. Yet.


          Paul

          PS: Yes, I really do have a cat, and his name really is Dumbass.
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        • Profile picture of the author Oxbloom
          Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

          Timothy,Indeed. I don't think I'd be amiss, however, in suggesting that sanctimony is mitigated somewhat by competence.


          Paul
          I think my irony meter just spiked.

          Anyone want to explain to Senior Wombat here just how badly he misused the word 'sanctimony' in that sentence? I'm afraid if I do it I'll draw blood.
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      • Profile picture of the author Tom B
        Banned
        Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post


        When in Rome, do as the Romans. If they are sending emails to prospects in America, it is their responsibility to speak MY language -- if they want me to take them seriously, that is.
        Maybe he should have sent it in Spanish.

        I suspect when you go to another country you speak their language fluently?

        I can understand if it was difficult to comprehend. I don't see that here. I see someone who would rather concentrate on specifics instead of understanding the message. You wouldn't be my target prospect.


        There's a difference between writing as one speaks, and just plain misspelling. Being conversational and making grammatical mistakes for that purpose can attract people and add believability.

        Misspelling words does not, and cannot accomplish any of that, as far as I can tell.
        It depends on your target market. As I already stated, people who are anal about these types of things wouldn't be my target.

        Also, one need not be perfect to point out imperfection.
        Interesting reality you live in.
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  • Profile picture of the author hotseochick
    Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

    I know there have been many posts about this, but I just saw an email subject line with only 3 words -- and a full 1/3 of them were misspelled!

    "Congrats - Your in!"

    (((sigh)))

    -- TW

    PS: Recipients of emails like this have trouble taking the senders seriously -- and I don't blame them.
    I feel "your" pain

    Little things like this get under my skin too.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    I can let congrats slide, but congrads drives me nuts (though not to the point of calling someone out on it). This type of misspelling derives from mispronouncing words to begin with. It also explains words like hybred/highbred, anti-semetic, ect., and aks, instead of hybrid, anti-semitic, etc. and ask.

    ~Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Mike McAleer
    Haha. Some guys don't even know how to spell... Ridiculous!

    I would always try to make sure I am spelling something right.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Paul, I give up. Either you tell us whose line it was, or as a suggestion, post it as a thread on Member Contests and Challenges. A nice prize wouldn't be half bad.

    Ok, with respects to the OP, we, unknowingly to some, tend to have this "WTF!" reaction every time we stumble on errors on emails et al. But at least we know halfway that the owner wasn't passionate about what he or she is selling to us (if he is he would have taken care of it before publishing it).

    Exceptions to these are very few but at least we know that if it's not worth it, we delete it.
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  • Profile picture of the author MoneyMonkey
    That is just pure laziness, they need to get educated or learn some grammar. That is not excusable and that is simple tasks you should have stored in your brain.
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    • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
      Paul,

      Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

      My faith in the classical literacy of Warrior Nation is still weak, but it has not yet toppled.
      Sadly, my cinematic literacy still needs some work; I haven't seen that movie. Although, I've just watched a clip on YouTube and it's encouraged me to hunt down a DVD.

      Gracias.

      Frank
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Originally Posted by MoneyMonkey View Post

      That is not excusable and that is simple tasks you should have stored in your brain.
      "That is simple tasks?"

      Mote. Red pencil. Physician, speel thyself.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author mlhearing
        Knew a guy once who name his dog D*mmit. That way he killed two words with one call: "C'mere D*mmit!"

        Michael
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        • Profile picture of the author mlhearing
          And look: I misspelled a word and left out a comma.

          Some of these "grammatical" errors could be the result of fast typing.

          And I forgot to say thanks for the welcome. Thanks.

          Michael
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        • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
          Originally Posted by mlhearing View Post

          Knew a guy once who name his dog D*mmit. That way he killed two words with one call: "C'mere D*mmit!"

          Michael
          You may have an added appreciation for this. I once worked at a carwash. My name is Michael, my boss' name was Michael, and he had a dog at the carwash...named Michael.

          I was never sure who he was yelling at.



          ~Michael
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        Oxbloom,

        Methinks you fail to understand the meaning of the word 'sanctimony.' To whit, according to Merriam Webster Online: noun: "affected or hypocritical holiness." The reference in this case is to the affected and hypocritical righteousness of the various involved Grammar Cops, and their demonstrated lack of competence in the field in question.

        It is generally considered useful to understand a thing before you correct it.


        Paul
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    • Profile picture of the author George Wright
      Originally Posted by MoneyMonkey View Post

      That is just pure laziness, they need to get educated or learn some grammar. That is not excusable and that is simple tasks you should have stored in your brain.
      Which one? Get educated or learn some grammer?

      George Wright
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      • Profile picture of the author Tom B
        Banned
        Originally Posted by George Wright View Post

        Which one? Get educated or learn some grammer?

        George Wright
        Who woke up George?
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Thomas,
          Who woke up George?
          I think that happened when the cueball jumped the rail.


          Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author George Wright
          Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

          Who woke up George?
          Thomas I beg you're pardon.

          George Wright
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          • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
            Oxbloom,

            Just to short-circuit the whole colloquialism debate... Sanctimonious literally means the belief on the part of the speaker that they are "holier than thou."

            Quod erat demonstrandum.


            Paul
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            • Profile picture of the author Oxbloom
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              Oxbloom,Re-read my corrections of the grammar of various wombats in the thread. The competence was clearly missing, yet the sanctimony remained.

              Thus, the hypocrisy.

              And one can be sanctimonious and competent at the same time. All that is required is the belief that one's competence implies an inherent superiority of character. That was evident in many of the comments.

              Note that 'hypocritical' is part of an 'or' pair in that definition...

              As far as nuance, I'm prepared to debate the colloquial aspects of the word, if you like.


              Paul
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              Oxbloom,

              Just to short-circuit the whole colloquialism debate... Sanctimonious literally means the belief on the part of the speaker that they are "holier than thou."

              Quod erat demonstrandum.


              Paul
              I'm either in some sort of Allen Funt situation, or I'm through the looking glass. Either way, stiff drink is indicated.

              Best wishes to one and all.
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              • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                Oxbloom,
                I'm either in some sort of Allen Funt situation, or I'm through the looking glass.
                Or, and this is more likely, there's some error in our communication that's become embedded and is preventing a proper exchange of ideas. Happens all the time in electronic media.


                Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Oops, error on my part. Seems like I was tad too late on my last post.

    I'm using my old Symbian phone so I didn't saw that Mr. Myers already answered the question asked.

    Oh well..
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  • Profile picture of the author Tom B
    Banned
    When did America become a country?
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Thomas,
      When did America become a country?
      September 17, 1787, by some accounts. It was actually in 1788, when enough states had ratified the Constitution.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author Tom B
        Banned
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        Thomas,September 17, 1787.


        Paul
        Is that the same for Central and South America?
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Thomas,
          Is that the same for Central and South America?
          Um... No. They're not countries.

          Consider yourself told, sir.


          Paul
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          • Profile picture of the author Tom B
            Banned
            Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

            Thomas,Um... No. They're not countries.

            Consider yourself told, sir.


            Paul
            Hell, what do I know. haha

            I always thought America was a continent comprising of Canada, USA and Mexico. Well, North America.

            I remember a youtube video of Colombians complaining how people from the states call it America.
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              Thomas,
              I always thought America was a continent comprising of Canada, USA and Mexico.
              That would be North America, and there are more countries in the list.


              Paul

              Added: 23 countries and 19 dependent territories. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of..._North_America
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              • Profile picture of the author Tom B
                Banned
                Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

                Thomas,That would be North America, and there are more countries in the list.


                Paul
                Yes, there are more countries but due to laziness...

                One of the reasons I enjoy traveling is seeing the world through different eyes. Like USA being called America. I never thought anything about it until people from other countries asked.

                Same thing with the World Series. Not much of a World Series. haha
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                • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                  Timothy,

                  Just out of curiosity... Which version of "English" do you think rules your "land?"

                  If you're more concerned about form than substance, you're not fitting company for civilized people, sir. Mrs Wombat awaits.


                  Paul
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                • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
                  Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

                  Yes, there are more countries but due to laziness...

                  One of the reasons I enjoy traveling is seeing the world through different eyes. Like USA being called America. I never thought anything about it until people from other countries asked.

                  Same thing with the World Series. Not much of a World Series. haha
                  IN Mexico, people from US are called "gringos", in Argentina "gringo" is for Italians, and they call people from US "yankees" with the "y" pronounced as "sh"
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                  • Profile picture of the author Tom B
                    Banned
                    Originally Posted by Sandra Martinez View Post

                    IN Mexico, people from US are called "gringos", in Argentina "gringo" is for Italians, and they call people from US "yankees" with the "y" pronounced as "sh"
                    In Philippines, every white person is Joe. haha
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                    • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
                      Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

                      In Philippines, every white person is Joe. haha
                      Actually we call them "Sir" or "Ma'am".
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                      • Profile picture of the author Tom B
                        Banned
                        Originally Posted by Jun Balona View Post

                        Actually we call them "Sir" or "Ma'am".
                        Yes, that as well. They are also called Joe.
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            • Profile picture of the author Diane S
              Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

              Hell, what do I know. haha

              I always thought America was a continent comprising of Canada, USA and Mexico. Well, North America.

              I remember a youtube video of Colombians complaining how people from the states call it America.
              I have several friends from South America, and they consider citizens of the United States to be quite arrogant when referring to the USA as 'America.' I have to agree with them, and I long ago trained myself to refer to my country as the United States - close, but not perfect - or the USA.

              I don't correct others, I just try to lead by example. If someone even notices why I never call the USA 'America,' I gladly explain it.
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              • Profile picture of the author MerlynSanchez
                Originally Posted by Diane S View Post

                I have several friends from South America, and they consider citizens of the United States to be quite arrogant when referring to the USA as 'America.' I have to agree with them, and I long ago trained myself to refer to my country as the United States - close, but not perfect - or the USA.

                I don't correct others, I just try to lead by example. If someone even notices why I never call the USA 'America,' I gladly explain it.
                People in a lot of countries to the U.S. as America. and since citizens of the U.S. are called "Americans", it makes sense that the country would be referred to as "America".
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                • Profile picture of the author Hesaidblissfully
                  I think it's the context that matters more than any set of hard and fast rules.

                  Spelling and grammar may not be important if you're writing a casual email to a friend (depending on who your friends are), but you wouldn't include things like "Dear Sir, I beleave I will be an asset to you're company becoz..." in your cover letter if you want to be taken seriously.

                  Likewise if you're writing a strategy guide for the latest Call of Duty and your target market is 14-25 year old males, then they'll probably be more tolerant of spelling/grammar errors than if you're writing to a corporate audience.

                  Also, if you're selling your services as a writer, then people will expect you to have exceptional spelling/grammar. Depending on what kind of writing you're doing, the bar for what's considered acceptable will rise or fall.

                  Note: Any grammatical or spelling errors in this post are completely intentional and there to make sure you're paying attention.
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            • Profile picture of the author Caleb Spilchen
              Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

              Hell, what do I know. haha

              I always thought America was a continent comprising of Canada, USA and Mexico. Well, North America.

              I remember a youtube video of Colombians complaining how people from the states call it America.
              Or maybe America is like the Capital of the Americas

              Caleb
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              • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
                Originally Posted by Caleb Spilchen View Post

                Or maybe America is like the Capital of the Americas

                Caleb
                Yeah, Caleb, we get it.
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  • Profile picture of the author packerfan
    I've lost all hope. 90% of the country can't use then and than properly, so I've just lowered my expectations so I stop being disappointed.
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
      Originally Posted by packerfan View Post

      I've lost all hope. 90% of the country can't use then and than properly, so I've just lowered my expectations so I stop being disappointed.
      And 87% are proficient at making up statsitics.

      Again, it should be "...use then and than properly, so..." If italicizing isn't possible, then "...use 'then' and 'than' properly, so..." would be correct, but not "...use "then" and "than" properly, so..."

      Just wanted to bring you up to speed as it seems to be a concern.



      However, I think your approach of lowering expectations is a good one, in theory, but I wonder just how low they will ultimately have to go?

      All the best,
      Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author mlhearing
    Michael,

    Three Michaels--yes I can appreciate that. We have a similar situation (sort of).

    Our older son's name is Chris, his wife's name is Chris, our younger son's wife's name is Chris, and my sister-in-law's name is Chris. Family get-togethers can be, ah, a little confusing.

    Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Heheh, I knew that I did something wrong... my phone's battery broke (thank goodness I have a spare)

    Anyway.. my bad on my part. Too much caffeine on your system can make you dizzy after all.

    Jun
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Indeed. But I haven't seen somebody called an American 'Joe' nowadays.

    Maybe when I was a kid, though.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tom B
      Banned
      Originally Posted by Jun Balona View Post

      Indeed. But I haven't seen somebody called an American 'Joe' nowadays.

      Maybe when I was a kid, thouh.
      Still pretty common from what I understand. I am sure location will be a factor.

      I am planning on living in Philippines for a year. I am a member of an expat forum that mainly deals with Cebu.

      According to quite a few people, everyone is Joe. haha

      I guess, some foreigners are irritated by it which I don't know why. It is pretty harmless compared to being called sceptic by our British brothers.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
        Originally Posted by Thomas Belknap View Post

        Still pretty common from what I understand. I am sure location will be a factor.

        I am planning on living in Philippines for a year and am a member of an expat forum that mainly deals with Cebu.

        According to quite a few people, everyone is Joe. haha

        I guess, some foreigners are irritated by it which I don't know why. It is pretty harmless compared to being called sceptic by our British brothers.
        I think you're right. Rural folks tend to call any foreigner 'Joe'. I lived in Manila so I haven't encountered somebody called that.

        I assume that it's not your first time visiting, is it?

        I haven't been to Cebu since 7 but the city is very beautiful as I remember.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Paul, with regards on my post earlier, I wasn't trying to be a ranting elitist who talks about marketers not doing the correct English grammar and having a smirk and all. It is an opinion of mine on the way I see it as it is and I apologize for that. And I welcome anyone disaggreeing with it.

    Besides, I always tend to get misinterpreted to what I say. You are not the first one to tell me such comments about me.
    Again, my apologies. Might as well keep my posts on preview before anything else (It does look bad as I might add.)
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  • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
    I used to try to spell right, but I decided to spell left instead. I found it to be 20% easier. I'll tell you what though, no one had better complain about my grammar, she was a wonderful person. So was my grampar.

    Seriously, the internet is an agglomeration of nearly every kind of person from nearly every culture. From the slow-witted to the astonishingly brilliant, from the mean spirited to the kindest of the kind, they're all here.

    If you think this global assemblage should conform to your grammatical and stylistic preferences, it's YOU who have the problem.

    In my estimation, I love language more than most, but my appreciation ends with me. It would be foolish of me to try to force my preferences on others or to think myself superior because I write with greater precision.

    They have the same right to choose how they present their messages that you and I do. My standards are not theirs, nor are yours, nor should they be.

    Those who try to bend the world to their view wage an endless battle of futility. That's your choice, but it seems like an incredible waste of time and energy to me. Only you see the world through your reality. Everyone else has their own reality. Trying to force others to see the world through your reality is not only arrogant, it often ends in hard feelings.
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    • Profile picture of the author Roaddog
      Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

      I used to try to spell right, but I decided to spell left instead. I found it to be 20% easier. I'll tell you what though, no one had better complain about my grammar, she was a wonderful person. So was my grampar.

      Seriously, the internet is an agglomeration of nearly every kind of person from nearly every culture. From the slow-witted to the astonishingly brilliant, from the mean spirited to the kindest of the kind, they're all here.

      If you think this global assemblage should conform to your grammatical and stylistic preferences, it's YOU who have the problem.

      In my estimation, I love language more than most, but my appreciation ends with me. It would be foolish of me to try to force my preferences on others or to think myself superior because I write with greater precision.

      They have the same right to choose how they present their messages that you and I do. My standards are not theirs, nor are yours, nor should they be.

      Those who try to bend the world to their view wage an endless battle of futility. That's your choice, but it seems like an incredible waste of time and energy to me. Only you see the world through your reality. Everyone else has their own reality. Trying to force others to see the world through your reality is not only arrogant, it often ends in hard feelings.
      Dennis the more I read from you, the more respect, buddy. You have a level head and a really cool newsletter.



      We use words everyday that have come from other languages.
      One thing I haven't seen mentioned here are the everyday English words that actually come from other languages.
      Just a small example would be 'boondocks'...did you know that's actually a Tagalog word? (Segueing from the earlier Tagalog references.)

      @Thomas Belknap.you will probably find that it is more the street hustler types that refer to you as Joe, that was only common in and around the military bases, as in GI Joe..but spreads (a little) when people go back to the provinces. I never had an educated Filipino call me Joe.
      I had a house in Barrio Barretto about six miles from base, for 5 years. I speak Tagalog more or less fluently (depends how far up the relative ladder of "the Kings" Tagalog you go) lol.

      @rosetrees...the spellchecker example was awesome,

      S'anyway

      A few years ago there was a movie called Bladerunner and in it, they had a language called L.A. speak, which was a combination of slang and words from different cultures that lived there. While the movie language was an exaggeration, it does exist. I grew up near downtown LA and that existed long before the movie. The area is largely Hispanic with a large Filipino population and Chinatown right there. It was common to use terms in everyday language from differing cultures and languages.

      My point being is that the Internet itself, is slowly developing it's own language and will continue to do so. With as many cultures and languages "in one place" it can't help, IMHO, but start to develop an international language (much like was tried with Esperanto, years ago) all by itself.
      Probably won't be any time soon, but I have no problem imagining it happen.

      In the mean time...


      No matter what language' words you use, if you use them, professionally, I think at least make sure they are spelled right. It would depend on who you are targeting.
      When in Rome...


      I realize I am hardly an expert in "proper" writing, but to my credit I did try to get into comma school...but they said I couldn't get in... Period!

      brrrrrrrding


      Jim
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      • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
        Oxbloom,

        [snippage]
        And that's what this is, after all. It's wombat porn. And it feels good. Until somebody barges into your room and catches you with your Fowler's in your hand.
        Alrighty, then.

        That is a fine piece of writing. Insightful, entertaining, and spot on. That, along with James' post, made the whole 5 pages worthwhile.

        Nicely done. Thank you.


        Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
        Originally Posted by Roaddog View Post

        Dennis the more I read from you, the more respect, buddy. You have a level head and a really cool newsletter.



        We use words everyday that have come from other languages.
        One thing I haven't seen mentioned here are the everyday English words that actually come from other languages.
        Just a small example would be 'boondocks'...did you know that's actually a Tagalog word? (Segueing from the earlier Tagalog references.)
        Thanks for your kind words, Jim.

        I didn't know that about "boondocks," and I used to live about 12 miles from a place that billed itself as Boondocks USA. It's a gas station/restaurant surrounded by Iowa cornfields where old highway 20 and Interstate 35 cross. I still have a jacket that says Boondocks USA on the back.

        Well, truth be told, my wife stole the jacket from me ... but I still get to look at it.
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        • Profile picture of the author Roaddog
          Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

          Thanks for your kind words, Jim.

          I didn't know that about "boondocks," and I used to live about 12 miles from a place that billed itself as Boondocks USA. It's a gas station/restaurant surrounded by Iowa cornfields where old highway 20 and Interstate 35 cross. I still have a jacket that says Boondocks USA on the back.

          Well, truth be told, my wife stole the jacket from me ... but I still get to look at it.
          No sweat Dennis, don't hand out praise unless I mean it.

          I looked up the origin for you..


          boondocks
          1910s, from Tagalog bundok "mountain." Adopted by occupying American soldiers in the Philippines for "remote and wild place." Reinforced or re-adopted during World War II. Hence, also boondockers "shoes suited for rough terrain" (1953).



          Some of you guy's suuuure do have some puuuurty writin' words.
          I sure can't do it...but I did enjoy the thread.
          Admire the art form. Shakespeare on




          Jim
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  • Profile picture of the author George Wright
    Dennis your right, wait I thought I was Wright. Now I'm confused and it's all you're fault.

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    • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
      Originally Posted by George Wright View Post

      Dennis your right, wait I thought I was Wright. Now I'm confused and it's all you're fault.

      Let me clear it up for you, George ... you're always Wright.

      Now let's see if any fish bite on your bait.
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      Just when you think you've got it all figured out, someone changes the rules.

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  • Profile picture of the author Diver Doug
    As a former adult literacy instructor for the Army, I'm still amazed that even with spell checkers and grammar checkers, people STILL get things wrong.

    One thing I always told my trainees was that someone who can write clearly, accurately and WITHOUT spelling/grammar errors will always be taken to be professional, while someone without those skills would not be taken seriously.

    One of the words that I still see misused is "Lose" vs "Loose". I still see people writing that someone is a "looser", or "I think we're going to loose the game"...ARRRRGH !!!

    Another one is the past tense of "learn" is "learnt", NOT "learned". For example, someone can be a very learned person, using all the knowledge he/she has learnt in life (there's a difference!)

    One last word that trips people up is Practice vs Practise...Here's how you can remember : The doctor will practise his medical skills at his medical practice building


    Fully agree with the OP...Spelling/punctuation/grammar errors = death in the marketing game!


    my two cents worth anyway...
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    • Profile picture of the author smwordsmith
      In my opinion, the majority of Americans who struggle with writing are victims of our rapidly deteriorating education system.

      I also believe that most of them do not recognize their misspelled words and grammar errors.
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      • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
        Originally Posted by smwordsmith View Post

        In my opinion, the majority of Americans who struggle with writing are victims of our rapidly deteriorating education system.

        I also believe that most of them do not recognize their misspelled words and grammar errors.
        LOL

        Funny. People have been thinking the same thing for a long time; at least as fsr back as the 1800s, and probably longer.

        Be careful though, we don't want this to turn political.

        All the best,
        Michael
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        "Ich bin en fuego!"
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    • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
      Originally Posted by Diver Doug View Post

      As a former adult literacy instructor for the Army, I'm still amazed that even with spell checkers and grammar checkers, people STILL get things wrong.

      One thing I always told my trainees was that someone who can write clearly, accurately and WITHOUT spelling/grammar errors will always be taken to be professional, while someone without those skills would not be taken seriously.

      One of the words that I still see misused is "Lose" vs "Loose". I still see people writing that someone is a "looser", or "I think we're going to loose the game"...ARRRRGH !!!

      Another one is the past tense of "learn" is "learnt", NOT "learned". For example, someone can be a very learned person, using all the knowledge he/she has learnt in life (there's a difference!)

      One last word that trips people up is Practice vs Practise...Here's how you can remember : The doctor will practise his medical skills at his medical practice building


      Fully agree with the OP...Spelling/punctuation/grammar errors = death in the marketing game!


      my two cents worth anyway...
      Learned is the past tense of learn, and practise isn't even a word...at least not in US English. So, if you see those in marketing, try to consider the source before jumping to any conclusions.

      Your point is still a good one though. Just thought I'd mention that English comes in more than one variety. Or, should I say, "...it coumes in moure than oune variety"?



      All the best,
      Michael
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      • Profile picture of the author paulie888
        Originally Posted by Michael Oksa View Post

        Learned is the past tense of learn, and practise isn't even a word...at least not in US English. So, if you see those in marketing, try to consider the source before jumping to any conclusions.

        Your point is still a good one though. Just thought I'd mention that English comes in more than one variety. Or, should I say, "...it coumes in moure than oune variety"?



        All the best,
        Michael
        Michael, Doug is obviously using the Queen's (UK) English, and has just pointed out several variations that differ from US English. This reminds me of a hilarious time in university here where I had several classmates from the UK, and they all insisted on using British English in all their papers and reports, claiming that the Americans had butchered the language... The professors were not amused, but nevertheless granted them leniency with this different usage/spelling of certain words.

        Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
          Perhaps the perspective of an EFL teacher would be useful here.

          In English language tests such as IELTS, you can write in regional variations of English providing you are consistent.

          If you wrote, "What colour is your driving license?" either colour or license would be a spelling mistake because one is correct English and the other is US English ().

          So, as an examiner, I have to mark a weird sentence like "She just left" as correct if the rest of the text is also in US English (stop pushing your luck, Luxton ).

          BTW, although spelling, grammar and punctuation are important, the emphasis in the exam is on meaningful communication.


          You might want to do some research on "International English". This is evolving into the lingua franca of the academic and business world.

          BBC News - Germany top for foreign students

          This quote from the video says it all

          But Herbert Grieshop, director of the university's Centre for International Co-operation, says that languages should not be a barrier to such globalisation and that international English might be more useful than some regional varieties.
          "I wonder whether a Chinese student can understand us better than someone with a Yorkshire accent or some strange American accent," he says in flawless English.
          The IELTS exam, which is more International English friendly, is now more popular than the US English TOEFL exam.



          Martin
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        • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
          Originally Posted by paulie888 View Post

          Michael, Doug is obviously using the Queen's (UK) English, and has just pointed out several variations that differ from US English. This reminds me of a hilarious time in university here where I had several classmates from the UK, and they all insisted on using British English in all their papers and reports, claiming that the Americans had butchered the language... The professors were not amused, but nevertheless granted them leniency with this different usage/spelling of certain words.

          Paul
          Yes, I was aware of that. I was simply pointing out that the assumption of non-professionalism may not always be accurate, as it could be the person is from an English speaking country where those variations are acceptable.

          Your professor gave in too easliy. The idea that we, or anybody somehow "butchered" the language is utter nonsense. I would not have granted them that leniency. Not because I would consider their spelling as wrong, but because they were acting like high and mighty jerks.

          Language evolve. Only those who use the same English as was being used in 900 AD have any basis for saying changes are somehow "incorrect". Otherwise, they need to understand that their linguistic evolution is no better than anybody else's.

          All the best,
          Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author mlhearing
    Well. I get up early this morning (off on a little trip soon), check the WF . . . and see that this is still going.

    It's interesting to me that so many folks get so heated about this. And some of the most heated make the most errors in their Wombattish remarks. (I notice this because I was there not long ago myself).

    Yes, of course, communication always trumps rigid adgerence to rules. What was it Orwell said? "Break any of these rules rather than say anything outright barbarous."

    But the OP may have a slightly valid point. Anyone one guilty of the kind of grammar gaucherie he adduces will likely lose sales to Wombats. And there are a lot of us out there--from the incorrigible to the recovering.

    Could be wrong, though, 'cause Ah don't know nothin' but no way to make money (really). But I do know a little about writing.

    Michael
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  • Profile picture of the author Chri5123
    Grammar is slightly harder to pick up than spelling - if you take MS word as an example for instance.

    I dont seen whats the fusses with grammer ands speelings anyway?

    Couldn't resist!

    Seriously though I take your point, I mean if you are communicating and marketing to your list it shows how much you think of them by how well conveyed your message is.

    If it has grammar and spelling mistakes that is not a good start!

    Chris
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  • Profile picture of the author JamieSEO
    I no that speling mistakes can be anoying...

    But if you take a good look around you and consider the literacy level of many people (especially the USA) it is not at all surprising to see errors.

    When you have teenagers working in retail that do not know how to do basic mathematics when you buy an $8.75 product and hand them a $20 note... can you really expect that literacy has not suffered as well?

    Spelling and grammar are both learned. I actually prefer it if I know that the writer has English as their second language... at least that way I know WHY there are errors
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    • Profile picture of the author George Wright
      Originally Posted by JamieSEO View Post

      I no that speling mistakes can be anoying...But if you take a good look around you and consider the literacy level of many people (especially the USA) it is not at all surprising to see errors.

      When you have teenagers working in retail that do not know how to do basic mathematics when you buy an $8.75 product and hand them a $20 note... can you really expect that literacy has not suffered as well?

      Spelling and grammar are both learned. I actually prefer it if I know that the writer has English as their second language... at least that way I know WHY there are errors
      OK, I admit I'm brain dead from working for 24+ but you really had me going for a minute.

      George Wright
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    • Profile picture of the author Ray Erdmann
      Originally Posted by JamieSEO


      When you have teenagers working in retail that do not know how to do basic mathematics when you buy an $8.75 product and hand them a $20 note... can you really expect that literacy has not suffered as well?
      I'm sure they could, but we as a society have become so accustomed to 'instant gratification' that nowadays, it's just easier to say how much change someone gets back, based on what the register indicates, hand it to them and get moving onto the next customer.
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      • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
        Originally Posted by Ray Erdmann View Post

        I'm sure they could, but we as a society have become so accustomed to 'instant gratification' that nowadays, it's just easier to say how much change someone gets back, based on what the register indicates, hand it to them and get moving onto the next customer.
        Hi Ray...

        Maybe this is what has happened...

        "I don't have to know spelling, because I can just use spell check."

        has evolved into...

        "Who cares if it's spelled correctly, as long as the reader understands WHAT I am trying to communicate? I've moved 'beyond' spell check -- it's too constricting, any way. I'm tired of being bullied or held captive by the artificial 'constraints' of 'SPELLITICAL CORRECTNESS!'* In other words, my 3rd grade teacher = 'da man' or 'da system'."

        *Hey! I coined a new phrase! (maybe)

        Cheers.

        -- TW

        PS: I still can't believe some on this thread seem to be saying, "iT duzn't mater hOW I splle stuff, Az lnog as it SUCKsessflluy konveys the maening eye intent."
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        • Profile picture of the author Tom B
          Banned
          Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post


          PS: I still can't believe some on this thread seem to be saying, "iT duzn't mater hOW I splle stuff, Az lnog as it SUCKsessflluy konveys the maening eye intent."
          Yeah, that is what we are saying alright.

          Of course, this "iT duzn't mater hOW I splle stuff, Az lnog as it SUCKsessflluy konveys the maening eye intent" is the same as mispelling "your" in a sentence. :rolleyes:
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  • Profile picture of the author Caleb Spilchen
    When you have teenagers working in retail that do not know how to do basic mathematics when you buy an $8.75 product and hand them a $20 note... can you really expect that literacy has not suffered as well?
    I'm sitting in a high school right now, and I can guarantee to you, almost every kid in this room could do that.

    Caleb
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    • Profile picture of the author eleary
      Caleb,

      That may be true - and I hope it is. However, I have paid for many products where I am thankful that we have cash registers - many people, adults included, cannot make change without an automated machine!

      I also taught an entrepreneur class in high school. I think it depends on the area, and probably more importantly, the parents, but I saw plenty of essays or papers with words such as "U" instead of "you" - which I assume comes from texting.

      I am way past high school, and I have noticed that my spelling is not as great as it used to be; which I contribute to technology.

      With that being said, I believe technology is a wonderful thing. If people use it correctly, it can help some people look more professional.

      When teaching students English as a second language, I encourage them to use the spell checker. I know that sounds a little contradictory - I believe it has made me lazier in my spelling! However, I believe it can help people learning English. They misspell the words - use technology to correct it, and learn the correct spelling!


      Technology is no replacement for a good education. Without knowing the proper grammar, the text editor cannot catch most mistakes!
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  • Profile picture of the author BlondieWrites
    I want to thank everyone that sent encouraging PMs to me about my posts and posts referring to me yesterday. That meant a lot to me.

    My responses here, after my first one, were emotionally driven. Due to the fact that my father died a few days ago, I have found myself obviously much more emotional and without my usual "thick skin" that's required when dealing with some people online.

    I greatly appreciate those that knew what I meant in my first post and also those that responded in a nice manner. I am sorry everyone saw me respond and behave in an unprofessional manner due to reacting to one person.

    Again, thanks all for the kind PMs. Know that you are each very appreciated.

    Cindy
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    Working from home, work at home moms, make money online, internet marketing, PLR content
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  • Profile picture of the author Oxbloom
    T&P to you and your family, BW. Glad you're doing okay.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Ya know, I think there's a little confusion here.

      I am not encouraging people to be sloppy in their grammar, spelling or syntax. Nor am I saying that being sloppy has no effect on how others view your writing. I am suggesting that we look to one of the oldest maxims on the Internet:

      Be conservative in what you generate, and liberal in what you accept.

      (Don't even think of turning that into a political comment...)

      For a paid writer to be sloppy in their work is unprofessional. For a graphic artist or auto mechanic to be less than perfect in their grammar is not. Some of us may find the more glaring mistakes to be annoying, but dismissing someone as stupid, careless or unprofessional over such things is pointlessly rude and probably self-defeating.

      Example: I recently ordered a book that had been mentioned here. In the intro, the author mixed up who's and whose. That's not a typo, or even a misspelling. It's an affront that would enrage any wombat-wannabe who saw it.

      Hell, it even annoyed me a bit.

      About 40 pages in so far, and I've seen numerous instances of dropped words, typos, misspellings and grammatical errors. Enough of them to believe the author edited his own work.

      If I took the stance the grammar purists in this thread have advocated, I'd have also missed out on a very useful and educational bit of reading. One that might well go a long way to improving the success of a project I'm investing a fair bit of time into.

      Would that have been the wise choice?

      We see a lot of comments about our educational system being at fault. The implication of most of these is that the people making the mistakes have not been educated well, or at all. That is likely not an accurate assessment, at least in the way it's been made. The problem is more likely to be something simpler: Our schools tend to teach people to spell by sounding out words, rather than using visual strategies. That leads to problems like confusing there, their and they're; loose and lose; who's and whose, and other similar groupings.

      Having been taught an ineffective strategy for spelling doesn't make a person stupid. Treating them as though they are is abusive.

      Then there are the people for whom English is a second (or later) language. Timothy suggests we expect the same level of competence from them as for a native speaker. That's silly. A lot of them are much better at it than most native speakers. But if they're not... so what?

      If the errors are distracting enough that you can't get the useful content without more work than is warranted, just unsubscribe, or stop reading their writing. That's reasonable. Ranting about their deficits, real or imagined, is pointless. It's also destructive, in a number of ways. The biggest one is in the impact it can have on their progress.

      You do not help someone learn by telling them they're stupid. You just discourage them.

      If you must point it out, do it in a helpful way. Send them a link to a page explaining the error, and the correct way to express whatever they were trying to say. That's the difference between being a teacher and a wombat.

      Here's one that covers quite a lot of the common mistakes.

      Note that being annoyed or distracted by mistakes does not make you a wombat. The thing that makes a person a womabt is the need for control. The drive to take others to task for failing to hold to the precise rules you believe are more important than the message the person is trying to communicate.

      That's the thing that makes wombats so annoying. They're into control.

      If you know how to write well, do so. It helps your reader, and that will always help you. If you don't know how to write well yet, practice. But don't let your lack of skill stop you from getting something going.

      Don't let the wombats get you down.


      Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author Black Hat Cat
    Banned
    Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

    I know there have been many posts about this, but I just saw an email subject line with only 3 words -- and a full 1/3 of them were misspelled!

    "Congrats - Your in!"

    (((sigh)))

    -- TW

    PS: Recipients of emails like this have trouble taking the senders seriously -- and I don't blame them.
    No no, you've got it all wrong. No one really cares about misspelling and poor grammar, in fact it's just the opposite. Just ask any copywriter who includes such errors in his finished product, and he'll tell you it actually IMPROVES your conversions, lol.
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  • Profile picture of the author Alfred Shelver
    Paul,

    Thank you, to have a master of the English written language as a champion of the not so good, made me feel all warm and fuzzy.

    I read threads on this forum every day, but particularly gifted writers on this forum I read constantly, not just for the information, but also to better my abilities.

    I struggle with punctuation at times, and it is a little frightening to think people are judging that, and other weaknesses rather than the content, is disheartening.

    As someone who offers writing services it is all the more daunting, but I am open and honest with my clients and try and make up for it with massive research and multiple proof reads.

    Before this sounds self promotional, its not, i just want people to realize there may be many other things a person can give and ad value with, which may not be apparent in their language and writing skills.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
      Originally Posted by Cathy Shelver View Post

      I struggle with punctuation at times, and it is a little frightening to think people are judging that, and other weaknesses rather than the content, is disheartening.
      You bring up a GREAT point, Cathy. Wombat behavior actually discourages the sharing of ideas and information when people with low confidence see others being ridiculed for their presentation.
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  • Profile picture of the author James Campbell
    My issue with the misuse of your/you're, there/their/they're, etc... is not that they got it wrong. It is when I'm actually really interested in the subject matter, taking my time to really digest what is being said, and then the wrong word is used, which changes the whole meaning of what is being said. If I'm tired enough, this causes me to have to read the sentence again, slowing my reading flow and irritating me. Not to mention, that irritation takes away from the power of the message.

    Use things wrong all you want, but if you get it right the message you are trying to convey will be that much more powerful to people like me who get distracted and have to backtrack every time the wrong word is used.

    Kind of like a fart in the middle of a love scene. It just ruins the mood.

    James
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  • Profile picture of the author mjhbnmjhbn
    Banned
    [DELETED]
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    • Profile picture of the author Tina Golden
      Originally Posted by mjhbnmjhbn View Post

      It's amazing to me how many people *don't* know proper grammar
      It amazes me, as well. Particularly when they don't bother to end their sentences with the proper punctuation.

      Timothy and others in this thread,

      The majority of the people in this thread are fully aware that the professional thing to do is to attempt to have your emails, copy or any other business communication as correct as possible. I know for myself, I proof everything and do my utmost to ensure correct spelling, grammar and syntax.

      However, that's a far cry from the sweeping generalizations that some seem to be making. For the record, spell check software does not pick up the difference between "your" and "you're". That could be a simple typo by someone trying to multi-task or that was distracted at the wrong moment by the phone ringing.

      You can love the language and still cut others a bit of slack. After all, if a misspelled word is the worst thing that happens, it's a pretty darn good day in my book.
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      • Profile picture of the author Sandra Martinez
        Originally Posted by Tina Golden View Post

        It amazes me, as well. Particularly when they don't bother to end their sentences with the proper punctuation.

        Timothy and others in this thread,

        The majority of the people in this thread are fully aware that the professional thing to do is to attempt to have your emails, copy or any other business communication as correct as possible. I know for myself, I proof everything and do my utmost to ensure correct spelling, grammar and syntax.

        However, that's a far cry from the sweeping generalizations that some seem to be making. For the record, spell check software does not pick up the difference between "your" and "you're". That could be a simple typo by someone trying to multi-task or that was distracted at the wrong moment by the phone ringing.

        You can love the language and still cut others a bit of slack. After all, if a misspelled word is the worst thing that happens, it's a pretty darn good day in my book.
        Hi Tina,

        You know?

        At this point there is no more conversation or ideas exchange.

        It seems more like an emotional reaction of hurt pride dressed up as self righteousness (free translation from Spanish, I hope it does apply in this context ).

        Going back to basics, there is no possible conversation when there is no interest in having a conversation.

        So, at least from my side, the best recommendation I can give to Timothy is to follow his bliss and restrain to keep reading ANYTHING when he finds the first typo. This way he will be safe and sound of so much nuisance.

        I wonder how he will actually keep educating himself in IM, but hey! to stay away from the dirty yuckie typos is so much more important than learning.

        Sandra
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  • Profile picture of the author Vyliss
    Personally... some of this debate is just a matter of opinion. I can write something that my partner thinks sound weird or is grammatically incorrect, but I say screw that, I want it to sound the way it sounds for a reason. And it wouldn't be RIGHT if I wrote it like someone else would write it.

    Same with fiction writers who OFTEN break the rules.

    I think people who are anal about grammar and spelling need to seriously get over it. And you know what, English can be rather ambiguous when it comes to its rules too.

    Although I agree, mixing up your, you're, and their, there is rather annoying.

    The rest is fine as long as you know why you're breaking the rules and for what reason.

    Also, I'm surprised no one has considered that some people deliberately misspell words in their advertising to get the attention of their audience - or for whatever other reason.. maybe branding reasons.
    The fact that they may appear dumb probably didn't cross their mind.
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  • Profile picture of the author Duquette
    for conversation, I think as long as it's understandable, it's okay. but for something formal, it does important. (and yeah, English is my not my 1st language, so if there any mis-spelling-or-whatever-I-have in my post(s), my bad)
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  • Profile picture of the author niffybranco
    Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

    I know there have been many posts about this, but I just saw an email subject line with only 3 words -- and a full 1/3 of them were misspelled!

    "Congrats - Your in!"

    (((sigh)))

    -- TW

    PS: Recipients of emails like this have trouble taking the senders seriously -- and I don't blame them.
    "Let him without sin cast the first stone". You might want to correct the grammatical and spelling errors in your WSO first before criticizing someone else publicly.


    I see you already edited the errors, you missed some.

    "If you get voiceover for your products or sites or videos" .

    Try use or utilize instead of get.
    Voice over is not a single word, separate with either a space or a dash.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Hmm... I'm just wondering:


    A marketer sets up a sales page, published it online, targeted visitors read it, and then he/she got an email commenting on the grammatical errors and misspellings on his/her page.

    Destructive, correct?

    I think it would be if the publisher has put his/her time and effort into the page...

    However, if he/she is a top marketer who's been successful in this business, and merely considers the sales page as an optional side job, I believe that the comment can be considered as a constructive one, since it's not his/her cup of tea, plus he/she did it in a jiffy.. or am I wrong?

    Funny, I said too much..yet I am still lost for words..
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  • Profile picture of the author gyar29
    Dear Wombat(s),

    Re: Grammar + spelling (((sigh)))

    I will assume that your strongly worded negative critique of my recent e-mail to you was intended to be helpful. And will therefore apologize for my inadvertent use of the word their, rather than the word they're. I suppose that I should also apologize for any other grammatical errors, misspelled words, or less than professional choices I may have made when writing my e-mail.

    Furthermore, I will not assume that you are a sanctimonious ass because you have chosen to assume that you would receive no benefit whatsoever from the information I was attempting to communicate to you because of those type of errors. After all, your grasp of all things correct should have been an indication to me that I had nothing of value to offer you, and any attempt on my part to do so would be an affront to your fine tuned sensibilities.

    An affront that requires you to dismiss out-of-hand anything I may have to say.

    With that said, I do wish to offer you my heart felt condolences. It appears that you have chosen to assume that any written form of communication that does not reach your level of grammatical competence has no value to you.

    I do hope that you will eventually come to understand that choosing to dismiss as valueless any attempt at communication with you that includes errors of grammar, or spelling, or wording that -in your opinion- is less than professional hurts only you.

    I will end this short thank you letter in the spirit of helpfulness that your critique of my e-mail's subject line obviously has.

    The gift of allowing yourself to find value in the ideas and information the author of the words you read intended to impart, rather than an out-of-hand dismissal of those words due to some self-imposed quality control guidelines, would be a gift that you owe yourself.

    Of course, you will probably not give yourself this gift.

    So I once again find myself thinking that I should offer you my heartfelt condolences.

    (((sigh)))
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    @ Gene...

    Well said.

    Love it!

    Seriously though...this is one of those times I wish we could thank posts more than once. We can't, so I decided to click the button AND jot this reply as well.

    All the best,
    Michael
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    • Profile picture of the author gyar29
      Michael,

      Thank You for the kind words.

      Over the years you, I, and everyone that has been here for awhile have seen this thread reincarnate frequently.

      The first time I read it I did so with incredulity. I could not believe that anyone could be so shortsighted in terms of their own benefit as to impose some arbitrary grammar or spelling guidelines when determining the value of what they read.

      As I've read subsequent incarnation I have found myself moving from disbelief, to anger at the presumption of superiority that the guidelines imply, to ambivalence at the Wombat's misguided choice.

      Now I find that the predominant feeling I have when reading those threads is sadness. Sadness at the lack of empathy displayed by the Wombat. Sadness at the missed opportunities every Wombat must have. Sadness at the complete lack of self-worth a Wombat must feel if they've reduced themselves to feeling that worth only when pointing out the trivial errors of others. And most strongly sadness at the crushing blow the Wombat's words can have on the uninitiated.

      Of course I also find an enormous amount of humor in the post of those more wise such as yourself, Paul, and others. Those are the posts that lead me to threads of this type in the first place.

      Oh well, what can you do? In a short period of time this thread too will die, and then be reincarnated. I suppose we'll just have to sit back and wait for that reincarnation to see the new ways the wise ones find to point out the self-defeating, oh so arrogant, choices made by the lowly Wombat.
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      • Profile picture of the author txconx
        Originally Posted by gyar29 View Post

        Michael,

        Thank You for the kind words.

        Over the years you, I, and everyone that has been here for awhile have seen this thread reincarnate frequently.

        The first time I read it I did so with incredulity. I could not believe that anyone could be so shortsighted in terms of their own benefit as to impose some arbitrary grammar or spelling guidelines when determining the value of what they read.

        As I've read subsequent incarnation I have found myself moving from disbelief, to anger at the presumption of superiority that the guidelines imply, to ambivalence at the Wombat's misguided choice.

        Now I find that the predominant feeling I have when reading those threads is sadness. Sadness at the lack of empathy displayed by the Wombat. Sadness at the missed opportunities every Wombat must have. Sadness at the complete lack of self-worth a Wombat must feel if they've reduced themselves to feeling that worth only when pointing out the trivial errors of others. And most strongly sadness at the crushing blow the Wombat's words can have on the uninitiated.

        Of course I also find an enormous amount of humor in the post of those more wise such as yourself, Paul, and others. Those are the posts that lead me to threads of this type in the first place.

        Oh well, what can you do? In a short period of time this thread too will die, and then be reincarnated. I suppose we'll just have to sit back and wait for that reincarnation to see the new ways the wise ones find to point out the self-defeating, oh so arrogant, choices made by the lowly Wombat.
        Instead of getting all emotional about it, why don't you either improve your language skills, or hire someone to proofread your products and e-mails?

        There's a message in these threads that keep cropping up. You are apparently not getting it.
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        • Profile picture of the author Dennis Gaskill
          Originally Posted by txconx View Post

          Instead of getting all emotional about it, why don't you either improve your language skills, or hire someone to proofread your products and e-mails?

          There's a message in these threads that keep cropping up. You are apparently not getting it.
          Perhaps ... and perhaps the wombat's are missing a message as well. After all, they are being given a message that keeps cropping up, too.
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          • Profile picture of the author Oxbloom
            Originally Posted by Dennis Gaskill View Post

            Perhaps ... and perhaps the wombat's are missing a message as well. After all, they are being given a message that keeps cropping up, too.
            The message that people appear to be missing is that it doesn't matter how far down this rabbit hole we go. There's no better, brighter world anywhere down there. Nobody in this story is Alice. It's all muck and worms down here.

            The people who write poorly executed headlines would probably be well advised to write better ones, or to have somebody do it for them.

            The people who call them out for doing so would be well advised to clean up their own houses.

            The people who call them out on that, and then declare themselves heroes of the people, in turn, would be well advised to stop being sanctimonious asshats.

            The people who call them out on that, and imagine themselves floating above the fray on a cloud of piety, just wind up sounding egocentric and self-delusional. Because you're never above the fray if you have to step into it to declare yourself so.

            There's wisdom at every level, and bull #### too. God knows I'm guilty of falling into at least three of those categories. Probably more.

            Listen, because here's the thing: you're not the alpha male here. Yes, I'm talking to you. And by you, I mean all of you, including the me part of all of you.

            If you can spot the botched contraction in the headline, I promise you there's somebody waiting right around the corner who's eager to spot your dangling modifier. If you're the corner-hider, I promise you there's an accomplished, smug, and self-satisfied professional writer hiding in the shadows nearby, just waiting to call you out on the inconsistencies in your parallel structure. If you're that guy, I promise you there's some other guy, this one with an MFA and 25 years editing experience, who'll gleefully point out to you that you're confusing and conflating style with grammar, and usage with spelling or something.

            And if you're that guy, there's a down-homey, conversational, barely high school educated rube kicking back in his lawn chair, torturing his syntax, writing obscenities into his emails when he can't think of anything snappier, and pulling down eight figures a year. And he's having a nice, full belly laugh at your expense.

            It's a vicious circle, and nobody participating wins. I know from experience. I've always been the guy who couldn't look away when the hippos at the zoo started to mate. That's amusing too, until the cute zookeeper you didn't know was behind you coughs uncomfortably to let you know she's there, and you suddenly realize you're the freakiest possible sort of voyeur.

            And that's what this is, after all. It's wombat porn. And it feels good. Until somebody barges into your room and catches you with your Fowler's in your hand.
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        • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
          Originally Posted by txconx View Post

          There's a message in these threads that keep cropping up.
          I think you have just made his point with the third person agreement mistake above.

          Another obscure writer from way back when (called John) said,

          "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her".


          Martin
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          • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
            Martin,

            Regarding the sentence, "There's a message in these threads that keep cropping up," you suggested he made a mistake.

            The 's' belongs at the end of 'keep' if he's referring to the message cropping up repeatedly. However, if he's referring to the threads, the 's' would not belong. The general assumption in a situation like this is that the writer is correct, and that he's talking about the threads and not the message.

            As far as the comparison between Sam Clemens and ol' Shaky Bill, there are a lot of people who'd take issue with my assessment of their relative merits. The forms are so different that it's really an unanswerable question.


            Paul
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            • Profile picture of the author txconx
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              Martin,

              Regarding the sentence, "There's a message in these threads that keep cropping up," you suggested he made a mistake.

              The 's' belongs at the end of 'keep' if he's referring to the message cropping up repeatedly. However, if he's referring to the threads, the 's' would not belong. The general assumption in a situation like this is that the writer is correct, and that he's talking about the threads and not the message.

              As far as the comparison between Sam Clemens and ol' Shaky Bill, there are a lot of people who'd take issue with my assessment of their relative merits. The forms are so different that it's really an unanswerable question.


              Paul
              I've been proofreading long enough to know the difference between a typographical error and a language error.

              I have no problem with errors in posts. I do have a problem with errors in advertising and business communications.
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            • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

              Martin,

              Regarding the sentence, "There's a message in these threads that keep cropping up," you suggested he made a mistake.

              The 's' belongs at the end of 'keep' if he's referring to the message cropping up repeatedly. However, if he's referring to the threads, the 's' would not belong. The general assumption in a situation like this is that the writer is correct, and that he's talking about the threads and not the message.
              Paul
              Paul,

              I think the sentence could be read either way.

              It registered on my "Huh?!?meter" as problematic.

              As we are talking in this thread about clarity of communication, I would argue that, because of the ambiguity, the sentence in question is not a good example of clear writing.


              Martin

              P.S. At least I think this thread is about clarity of communication - maybe I misinterpreted the last 4 pages.

              P.P.S. Re: Sam and Bill. I think an honourable draw would be the fairest result. "The Man Who Corrupted Hadleyburg" is my favourite short story.

              P.P.S.S. Have you ever read any of Richard Brautigan's books? Gothic meets mark Twain.
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              • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
                Martin,
                As we are talking in this thread about clarity of communication, I would argue that, because of the ambiguity, the sentence in question is not a good example of clear writing.
                Possibly. You could as easily label it as a parsing error. From a purely technical perspective, it's correct.

                Nope. Never read anything by Brautigan. The closest I get to gothic these days is the offtopic section.

                I couldn't begin to pick a favorite short story. That's like a favorite song... For what mood and occasion???


                Paul
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            • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
              Ken,
              Message is the subject of that sentence, Paul. "In these threads" is an adjectival describing the subject.
              "Keep(s)" could refer to either noun in the sentence. Ask any professional grammarian. Note: Not wombat. Professional.


              Paul
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        • Profile picture of the author gyar29
          Originally Posted by txconx View Post


          There's a message in these threads that keep cropping up. You are apparently not getting it.
          My friend, the misguided point of those messages is not lost on me. However, your message has just made mine.
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      • Profile picture of the author Martin Luxton
        The first time I read it I did so with incredulity. I could not believe that anyone could be so shortsighted in terms of their own benefit as to impose some arbitrary grammar or spelling guidelines when determining the value of what they read.
        There was a little known playwright in Elizabethan England who couldn't even spell his own name properly.

        His works faded into obscurity and nowadays nobody has ever heard of his plays "Romeo and Juliet", "Hamlet", "King Lear" or "A Midsummer Night's Dream".


        Martin


        P.S. Not sure if I agree with Paul's contention that Mark Twain was a better writer than this guy.
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  • Profile picture of the author webgladiator
    What amazes me is the mispelling (LOL)...misspelling that I see in everything from sales letters,$4997 courses, books, emails, etc... This is a real business, treat it like one, and use one of those magical wizard tools they call spelcheckers! (edit: spell checkers...see, magical!!!)
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  • Profile picture of the author Jun Balona
    Sir Tsnyder, I strongly suggest that you look up BlondieWrites' last post on page 4.

    That could be the reason she can't buy that "sense of humor".

    Edit: it seems that you have deleted the post. Thank you for doing so.

    And my sincere condolences to you BW.
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    • Profile picture of the author Tsnyder
      Originally Posted by Jun Balona View Post

      Sir Tsnyder, I strongly suggest that you look up BlondieWrites' last post on page 4.

      That could be the reason she can't buy that "sense of humor".

      Edit: it seems that you have deleted the post. Thank you for doing so.

      And my sincere condolences to you BW.
      It seems the post was deleted for me... I'm good with that though
      I don't necessarily regret the thoughts expressed therein. We all have
      problems to deal with. I've never accepted that as an excuse for bad
      behavior for myself or anyone else. That said, I have no problem with
      the deletion.

      Tsnyder
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  • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
    I discount the entire "wombat" notion.

    Can a murderer call the police if someone steals his wallet? Of course!

    It's a spectrum. There are mistakes, and then there are ***MISTAKES***.

    Everyone has their -- err his or her -- own level on the language limbo bar, as to which errors they will permit "through." Whether on the writing side or the reading side. My OP was NOT calling for perfection by any means. It was pointing out the level which I personally determine as "FAIL."

    Anyone reading this thread will, of course, have his or her own level of tolerance -- or no threshold at all! It's a matter of personal preference. The term 'wombat' is meaningless. It implies there are two mutually exclusive areas -- perfection and imperfection.

    There aren't. It's a gray area -- a spectrum.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

      I discount the entire "wombat" notion.
      Feel free. I suggest you read the Wombat Report before you do, though. It has very little to do with one's tolerance for laxity in spelling and grammar, and everything to do with the motivation and handling of that preference.


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  • Profile picture of the author ThelemaqueTip
    okay...I understand where you coming from...Sometime you have to realize not everyone can perfect English because that's not their major..I'm not going lie my grammar is horrible but i still find a way to make those correction. "Does that make since?"
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  • Profile picture of the author eleary
    I have taught English as a second language. I understand that not everyone can have perfect English. When I speak a second language, it is not even close to how I speak in English. However, when I want to send a letter in another language, I get someone to edit it.
    It's actually amazing to me that people spend 10 or 20 thousand dollars for a copywriter and hundreds for graphics and other parts of their business; yet, they will publish a .pdf that is riddled with misspellings. Outsourcing is so easy in our business, this should be something more people outsource.

    In a forum - obviously, there is no need for this. But as a professional, a business person, everyone should take the time, and spend a little money having products edited. I personally have all of my products proofread by someone.

    I believe in just getting it done; however, we are trying to sell products, every little distraction takes away from your message. In addition, perception accounts for a large part of how we view a person. Understandably, plenty of people do not have excellent English; on the other hand, we all have the resources available to look more professional.

    I have heard many marketers say that it is not that important. I beg to differ. I believe, it takes away from the quality of a product, or at least how people perceive the product owner. Internet marketing is a business, we should treat our products like they are of high value, we do not want to take away the hard work and effort that we put into our products, with misspelled words. It looks as if we did not take the time, or did not care to take the time, to create a valuable product. It portrays an uncaring attitude that may spill over into how they view the product instead of just the copy.
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  • Profile picture of the author Oxbloom
    $63.896,21.

    I clicked.
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  • Profile picture of the author SteveJohnson
    This has been a very entertaining and enlightening thread. I have found it necessary to examine and attempt to adjust the initial reactions I have when I come across what I used to perceive as an unacceptable error in grammar or spelling.

    I have never risen (sunk?) to the level of Wombat. I might have arrived there, though, until the day I posted a message here then discovered, to my absolute horror, that I had used the contraction "they're" when I actually meant "their".

    I was mortified.

    Then I started paying a little more attention to my fingers as I typed. I came to the conclusion that I must have the most unusual fingers in the world. Each one has a mind of its own, which collectively allows them to sometimes override their supreme commander.

    So now I find myself (even more so after having digested this thread) having a more tolerant attitude toward those who "git 'er done" without feeling the need to have a dog-eared copy of the Chicago Manual of Style at their fingertips.

    Although I still shake my head at the lot lizard who proudly proclaimed in 12" high letters, on the readerboard of the the area's largest Chevrolet dealership, "2009 Chevy Camero's - only 10 left!" Had he looked down, he would have seen a 2009 Camaro directly under the sign. I still would have been left wondering, though, "the Camaro's what?"

    The pull of the Wombat is so strong...
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  • Profile picture of the author cherylwright
    Originally Posted by TimothyW View Post

    I know there have been many posts about this, but I just saw an email subject line with only 3 words -- and a full 1/3 of them were misspelled!

    "Congrats - Your in!"
    Seriously, that's nothing. Take a look at this email I received today:

    I am sorrow, but I am a professional writter with a new book in the world, so I could writter to you.

    ---------

    That's not even half of the email. Unfortunately, it got worse.




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  • Profile picture of the author TimothyW
    Hi Paul --

    Ok, now I've read the report (paypal receipt: 8-1-19-2-18-15-21-3-11), and I must say, I still don't get it. I don't see what it has to do with this thread. I won't detail why the wombat connection to this thread is (still) a mystery to me, because, of course, that will only extend the thread. Sorry. Call me thick.

    -- TW

    PS: I also don't see what the self-bemusing challenge of, "here's an obscure turn of phrase. I bet no one can tell me its literary origin!" has to do with this thread, either. Seems utterly off topic, perhaps belonging in the "Off Topic" forum. Again, I'm sure it's me, not you.
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