Do U Ck Spelling?

18 Jan

A victim of all the texting and instant messaging is spelling. You simply don’t have time to spell everything out. Everything becomes acronyms or shortenings.  Page 3 in today’s Washington Post has a feature on the importance of spelling and grammar. One reader likens proper grammar/spelling to using the proper notes in music (if you don’t, the music just doesn’t sound right).  As a writer, I agree. However, does the public agree? Do most people even realize when something is not spelled correctly or when grammar is poor? I once worked with a “writer” who did not know how to make his subject and verb agree. And he was completely unaware. Recently, on a DCPubs (a Yahoo group) discussion, someone asked what was wrong with using “their” as a gender-neutral alternative to “he or she.” This person was completely unaware that one is plural and the other singular.  (As an aside, we HEAR this all the time in conversation, but in formal writing?)

So, I ask you, are spelling and grammar important? Do you notice lapses in either or both?

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2 Responses to “Do U Ck Spelling?”

  1. scormeny January 24, 2008 at 5:40 pm #

    I’m an extremely good speller and tend to have good grammar, and in general I prefer to write and read complete sentences. I believe I tend to notice bad grammar and it gives me pause.

    BUT! I don’t want to be a snob about it. I actually think it’s interesting that many of my smart friends are bad spellers or poor grammarians. In personal communications, I’ve become pretty inured to the indignities some people visit on our language when writing it down.

    That being said, I am always distressed when I’m working with an organization and their press releases or constituent emails have typos or bad grammar in them, and I will point it out.

    Even worse is when the date, time, or location are wrong in an event announcement. ARGH! That one does drive me crazy.

  2. scormeny January 24, 2008 at 5:41 pm #

    And, see? My own grammar snobbishness has tripped me up — “their press releases” is the wrong follow-up to “an organization.” One of those frustrating English-language problems; the lack of a good gender-neutral singular third-person pronoun.

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