Having a bad day?

Those genius editors working on the Yahoo! front page had a really bad day yesterday. So bad, in fact, that I almost feel sorry for them. It must be awfully discouraging to work for a company that has no interest in the quality of what you produce. A company that lets you publish terrible typos, grammatical goofs, and massive misspellings on what is allegedly the most visited page on the Web.

How bad would you feel if you wrote this?

Wouldn’t you be embarrassed to learn that you made a simple noun, like northern lights, into a capitalized one?

Maybe you’d start looking for other employment if you felt that your employer doesn’t know the difference between a carat (the weight of a gem) and a karat (a measure of the fineness of gold):

I know I’d be red-faced if I couldn’t spell al Qaida right twice:

But that’s not all! There’s a word missing here:

and a misspelled ex-defendant here:

and a bit of nonsense that might be code for ingredient:

and a major grammatical embarrassment there:

That’s a lot of mistakes for one day. (And that’s not even all of them. Check out previous posts from Monday.) How bad would you feel after having a day like that?

See what happens!

See what happens when you screw up! Like, if you don’t know the difference between a karat and a carat, and you use the wrong word. Next thing you know, it gets picked up by the Yahoo! front page and spread around the world;


Was it gold or a diamond?

Was the writer for Yahoo! Shine thinking about gold or a precious gem when she wrote this?

A karat is used to measure the fineness of gold. The word the writer wants is carat — the unit of measure for gems. A 20-karat ring would be almost  pure gold, but a 20-carat ring would be a boulder.

Flipping out over flip-flops

I flipped out when I read about my favorite designer shoes on Yahoo! Shine.  According to the writer, they look like a couple of nickels:

They look like chump change? Not like something you could buy with chump change (which is a small or trifling sum of money), but the actual change itself? Hmmmm. Interesting, but totally inappropriate, choice of words.

I should have stopped reading right there. But I was so intrigued by the writer’s inability to use English, and yet collect money (maybe chump change) for writing in English, that I continued on. Big mistake. The next paragraph included a missing hyphen, a misplaced hyphen (it should be Jackson Pollock-type), and a homophonic error. (A carat is used to measure gems, not gold. The gold standard is a karat.) And again with an incorrect word:  The conservation organization is the World Wildlife Fund:

Karats is gold; carats is diamonds

I think the author of this snippet from Yahoo! Personals was thinking about diamonds, but was weighing in on gold:

A karat is used to measure the fineness of gold. The word the writer wants is carat — the unit of measure for diamonds. A 4-karat ring would be about 16% pure gold, but a 4-carat ring would be a rock.


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