Here are this week’s offerings from across the web of all things related to grammar, punctuation, spelling, etc. In other words, everything that would interest a good copy-editor or proofreader. Enjoy!
The Kardashian sisters must have gone to English class. According to writing enhancement app Grammarly, Kim and Kourtney Kardashian make fewer grammar and spelling errors on Twitter than any of the top celebrity tweeters, except for President Barack Obama.
Do you know when to use who versus whom? Affect versus effect? If you’re stumped, first crack open your textbook, but then make sure to get a good night’s sleep – it could help!
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who himself speaks in tongues at times, says that proper grammar is the key to success. Answering a question from a caller during his appearance on a New York City radio show, the billionaire mayor said that without proper spoken English, the children of New York have no future.
We hear the term “afterwhile” frequently, but how do you spell it if you want to write it? Is it one word, as I have it here, or is it more than one word — “after a while” or “after while” — or is it a word at all?
Seemingly out-of-step for someone who recently encouraged young people to pursue a plumbing gig, NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg is now waxing eloquent on the importance of “speaking grammar” when it comes to scoring a good job.
George Orwell once noted that writing is a “horrible, exhausting struggle.” He was talking about writing books, but I find almost any writing difficult, short of a grocery list.
Sherman Alexie, author of the fantastic The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, tapped into the internet’s obsession with grammar on Tuesday when he tweeted: “Grammar cops are rarely good writers. Imagination always disobeys.”
GCSE students are set to be graded from 1 to 8 – with 8 being the highest score – as part of reforms to try to make the qualification more rigorous.
A missing apostrophe from the city’s most famous thoroughfare has sparked a radical bid by the punctuation police to reinstate the humble symbol into our “ignorant and lazy” street signs.
Ten years ago, Lynne Truss published Eats, Shoots and Leaves: the Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation. It was doctrinaire about commas, semi-colons, dashes and other diacritical marks, and it seemed to signal the end of the line for the Grocer’s Apostrophe – you know the kind of thing: “Apple’s and Pear’s 75p a pound!”, “King Edwards Potatoe’s £1.99 a kilo”.
I will tolerate repetitious misuses of “like” when I’m talking with a person with whom I have no interest in a relationship (e.g. a salesperson, albeit I file the conversation under “Try Not to Patronize These Places of Business”), but I will not tolerate even one such misuse with my grandchildren.
In recent years schools have abolished handwriting lessons in place of computer keyboarding. But this week North Carolina became the latest state to veer back to tradition with the ‘Back to Basics’ bill, meaning that elementary school students will once again be taught to write in cursive.