And bad days sit around doing nothing

Good days work. Bad days don’t. What does that have to do with the talks surrounding the situation in Ukraine? You’d have to ask the writer for Yahoo! News responsible for this:

good days work news

OK, so we all know that the writer meant: Good day’s work. That’s what the Associated Press calls a quasi possessive. Other examples include: three years’ experience, two weeks’ pay, and a good night’s rest.

That’s not nice

It’s not nice to laugh and point at others who have stumbled. Case in point, the writer for Yahoo! News’ “Trending Now” who has a little problem with English:

case and point ledge

I point this out to be instructive: The idiom is case in point.  And any father would be wise to keep a baby off a building’s ledge. But it wasn’t a ledge that was attracting the toddler; it was a balcony.  As Mark Twain once said, “The difference between the right word and the nearly right word is the same as the difference between lightning and the lightning bug.

And then I stopped reading

It wasn’t a typo, a misspelling, or a grammar gaffe that stopped me from reading this article on Yahoo! News — it was the fact that the writer didn’t know if he was writing about an interview in Fortune magazine or Forbes magazine:

fortune forbes news

If the writer gets a basic fact like that wrong, what else has he screwed up? I don’t know because I stopped reading when I read this. If I really want the facts, I’ll read the original interview in Fortune. Or Forbes.

No clue, no clue at all

Every once in a while, I read something on Yahoo! that I cannot decipher. I cannot parse the sentence. I cannot glean a scintilla of information. I cannot guess at what the writer was trying to say. And here is today’s WTF writing from Yahoo! News:

neither news

Anyone have a clue as to what this should be? Anyone?

When a spell-checker isn’t enough

I’m constantly bitching about the misspellings on Yahoo!. I don’t understand why writers don’t use a spell-checker to catch misspellings like immitations and annoucement. Sometimes, however, (actually, I say always) you need a real human bean spell-checker. Someone who could read this on Yahoo! Finance and know that it’s wrong:

as simple impossible finance

Let me make this as simple as possible: No spell-checker would flag that as incorrect.

Only a live proofreader or editor would spot this error — unless, of course, they work for Yahoo! Shine:

kicked our of shine

There’s no spell-checker that would notice that this isn’t the right word on Yahoo! News:

manger news

They’d probably prefer Jell-o

Yum. Who wouldn’t like a dinner that included salad, filet mignon, and a pile of sand? That’s the meal that was served to homeless people, according to Yahoo! News:

desert news

Maybe the writer was thinking back to that old TV commercial with the slogan “Nobody doesn’t like Sahara Lee.”

How to attract crows

If you’re thinking of attracting birds to your backyard, don’t do what the folks at this rally did. According to Yahoo! News, the rally couldn’t even attract a large crow:

crow news


When I read this on Yahoo! News I was shocked: Was there really a newspaper with journalists as spelling-challenged as Yahoo!’s writers?

dachshaund news

The article contains two quotations from the Waterloo Region Record and both quotes include a very obvious spelling error. When quoting material that contains a spelling error, legitimate news sites include [sic] after the misspelling. The [sic] is “used to indicate that a quoted passage, especially one containing an error or unconventional spelling, has been retained in its original form or written intentionally” (American Heritage Dictionary).

Why was [sic] missing? Because the writer at the Waterloo Region Record spelled dachshund and prairie correctly. The Yahoo! writer, who could have simply copied and pasted the text, introduced the misspellings, making one legitimate news site look like a familiar, but not so professional site.

That would be the definition of remains

I don’t know why I bother to read an article when the headline contains an error. Not surprisingly, the offending header is on Yahoo! News:

401k news 1

The U.S. retirement plan is a 401(k) — the parentheses are part of its name, which is taken from subsection 401(k) of the Internal Revenue Code. The writer is so sure that the plan requires no parentheses, he omits them again:

401k news 2

What would be the living remains of a cat? I was just wondering since the writer tells us about the deceased remains of a cat:

401k news 3

Do you think that word missing in “started move on” is the last error. Calm down on that optimism. There’s just one more bit of nonsense:

401k news 4

I’m stumped. How do you calm down on optimism? How do you write stuff like that and still have a job?

Soiree, foray. What’s the diff?

This is one of those articles from Yahoo! News that actually makes me feel sorry for the writer. Clearly, English is not his first language, and he’s being asked to write as if it were and as if he were a trained professional. It can’t be easy. So, that may be why he thinks sing-a-long makes sense as a verb. It does not:

soiree news 1

Of course, he meant sing along.

He may have thought that the adverb completely was called for here, but he’s wrong again. The correct word is complete:

soiree news 2

This is clearly just a typo (I hope), so he gets a bye with this:

soiree news 3

But “first soiree with Internet stardom” makes no sense whatsoever. I can hardly imagine what he thought he was writing:

soiree news 4

Could it be “first foray into Internet stardom”? Anyhoo, the writer also omitted an apostrophe after Keys (or perhaps it should be Keys’s, one never knows what Yahoo!’s standard is), but helpfully dropped an unnecessary (and incorrect) comma after called.

English is a difficult language to master. Maybe this writer could use a little help — from a competent editor.


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