Hanging by The Thread

The Thread is a video show on Yahoo! Shine featuring celebrity fashion. Judging from the text that accompanies each show, I’d say it’s a good thing it doesn’t try to venture into weightier issues. Tackling the more pressing issues of the day requires a higher standard of communication and accuracy.

Take this single paragraph, which manages to omit the hyphen in brand-new, misplace a period (it belongs before the closing quotation mark), mangle a sentence by either omitting words or using too many (I’m not sure which), and using advise when the correct word is advice.

Even more egregious is misspelling Mary-Louise Parker and Mary McCormack in the paragraph that follows:

And after the first sentence, it seems that the writer just gave up trying to write complete sentences, correctly punctuated. And I gave up, too. There was just too much wrong with this to enumerate it all. The writer and editor’s grasp of correct English is hanging by a thread.


3 Responses to “Hanging by The Thread”

  1. Chad Larson Says:

    While I applaud most of your insight, I think you may have unfairly called Yahoo! Shine on the carpet on one point. The rule of placing commas and periods inside quotation marks is a silly convention that is decreasing in usage. Note that it is a uniquely American convention to begin with and not recognized as correct in Britain (or other English-speaking countries, for that matter). It was instituted in the interest of typesetters for reasons that are no longer relevant. Even in the United States, a good number of sources of reputable writing have begun to place these punctuation marks outside the quotation marks, and I say it’s high time. Given the other admittedly egregious errors that routinely pockmark Yahoo! Shine’s pages, it’s clear that their correctness on this point was wholly inadvertent. But give the devil his due.

  2. Laura Says:

    Thanks for your insightful comments. I understand that putting a comma or period inside quotation marks is definitely a U.S. convention. And calling it out when there are so many more serious errors on a page is nitpicking. But Yahoo! conventions for punctuation follow AP style and Yahoo!’s own internal style guide — both call for the comma and period within quotes. If that had been the only error on the page, I would have overlooked it.

  3. Aneloadiona Says:

    My name is Jessika!

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