Your know your proofreading skill is sucky when…

You know your proofreading skills suck if you missed the typo and erroneous punctuation in this headline from Yahoo! Shine:

your know shine

If only there were a way…

If only there were a way for writers to see the exact spelling of a product they’re writing about. Something like oh, maybe a picture of the product. If the writer for Yahoo! Shine had a picture, perhaps she could see how to spell Sandler and Watercolour:

sadler 1

Oopsie. There’s a picture, but she still got the product name wrong. Maybe that’s just an anomaly.

Except that it’s not. Here she manages to miss O2M, too. And not content with messin’ with the product name, she messes with punctuation (with an extraneous period and mysterious comma), grammar (it’s should be its), and spelling of techie (she makes up her own spelling because the one in dictionaries is just too ordinary, and she needs to flex her creative muscle):

sadler 2

I thought there was an actual photo of a product by Ginvera, but noooo. I am wrong. It is a pgoto of something from Ginevra:

sadler 3

If only this writer could actually copy words that are right in front of her, perhaps we might be willing to overlook her other literary shortcomings.

It’s not a typo. I meant to misspell her name

How many times did the Yahoo! Shine writer misspell Cara Delevingne’s name? Every time! It starts in the headline of the article (just so you’ll notice) and continues throughout the article, in every photo caption.

But that’s not all! The writer displays a wobbly grasp of punctuation: There shouldn’t be a hyphen in “barely there” and the period belongs after the closing parenthesis:

cara 1

Unless Miranda Kerr has two or more grandmothers who collectively own a farm, this apostrophe is wrong, and there should be a comma to separate the misspelled Ms. Delevingne from her age, which should be in bold:

cara 2

As if to prove she didn’t make a typo, the writer continues with the abuse of Ms. Delevingne’s name in every caption:

cara 3

cara 4

cara 5

cara 6

cara 7

Hey, I’ve always said, “If you can’t be right, at least be consistent.”

Don Johnson attends premiere of ‘Don Johnson’

Well, hello, Miss Steele.

That’s the way this opening on Yahoo! Movies should have been punctuated if you’re an old-school punctuationist:

don johnson movies

That’s not the only punctuation problem in this excerpt: There’s the period outside the quotation marks (in the U.S., it goes before the closing quote) and the missing hyphen in 23-year-old. And while we’re talking errors, how about that extra word in “attended to”? Don Johnson and Melanie Griffith attended the premiere of “Don Johnson.” I wonder if it’s anything like the recently premiered “Don Jon.”

Don’t tell her husband

Including a quotation in your writing? If so, “you probably want to get the punctuation right,” she says (she being me). Don’t copy the goofy characters used by the writer for Yahoo! Shine‘s “Daily Shot”:

nadia 1

Hungry? You might whip up a chicken friend steak, which involves a cowardly pal and sirloin.

Not content to screw up the punctuation in a quote, the writer uses an apostrophe in a creative — and wrong — way:

nadia 2

An apostrophe can be used to indicate a missing letter, like the G in bitchin‘. I have no clue what letter is missing in ‘bitchin.

Don’t tell Ali’s husband, George Stephanopoulos, that she really wants to seduce George Clooney:

nadia 3

A Penney for your thoughts

The writer for Yahoo! News‘ “The Sideshow” is pretty free with freeway in this redundant use of the word:

hit 1

He’s also pretty free with the spelling of the article’s subject. It’s an article about JC Penney, not about the copper coin:

hit 2

Proving that he doesn’t need to do any fact-checking, he even misspells the retail giant’s URL:

hit 3

If a tea kettle is formerly known as “Bells and Whistles,” what is it called now? And does it have a new, formal name?

hit 4

Of course, most people aren’t taking the writer’s work too seriously. They know that he’s somewhat of a hack whose writing would benefit from the watchful eye of a competent editor. I’m thinking, maybe an editor who knows that a series doesn’t involve a single commentary, but multiple commentaries:

hit 5

I suppose if the writer doesn’t care about spelling and word usage, he also doesn’t care too much about punctuation. Perhaps he feels that a period between sentences is optional:

hit 6

It’s not tele vision

Perhaps it’s a love of punctuation that drove the editor for Yahoo! Shine to write TV with periods (it’s not an abbreviation of tele vision) and tearjerkers with a hyphen:


According to several dictionaries (including the American Heritage Dictionary, which the editor could have found on the Yahoo! network), there’s no hyphen in tearjerker.

Writing about the movies

If you’re writing about the movies and you know nothing about writing — or movies — you might work for Yahoo! Movies:

sturgess movies

A real cinema maven knows who Preston Sturges is and knows how to spell his name. A real writer would never form the plural of brother with an apostrophe. And a real writer who writes for a U.S. audience knows that the period goes before the closing quotation mark.

Not even tryin’

They’ve given up. The editors and writers for have finally thrown in the towel and have abandoned all pretense of trying to write accurately and correctly. They’re just banging on keyboards now, hitting random keys and pushing the results out to the public.

fp hip hop

They’re not even trying to get LL Cool J’s name right. (Hint: It does not contain periods.) They’re not even trying to get hip-hop right. (Hint: It does contain a hyphen.) They’re not even proofreading. (Hint: Assault has two A’s.) They’ve given up. How long before the public gives up on them?

One sorry miss-take

This probably makes sense to the editor for the Yahoo! front page, but to people living in the United States, it means Mississippi District of Columbia:

fp miss dc

Yup, the abbreviation Miss. is short for that Southern state. The title miss (as in Miss D.C.) is not an abbreviation.


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