What your blog says about your company

I wish I had stopped reading the Yahoo! corporate blog, Yodel Anecdotal, right after seeing this headline:

It wasn’t the missing hyphens in what should be back-to-school that got me. It was the misspelling of Farnoosh Torabi — a Yahoo! employee and the subject of the blog post — that had me anticipating the worst and wondering how mistakes like that happen. This was the company blog, after all. It represents the company and its commitment to its readers, its employees, and its shareholders. It is so badly written that any third-grader could have done better.

What does this post say about Yahoo!? That it can’t be bothered with editing and proofreading. One sentence with a missing comma, an apostrophe used to form a plural, a bit of redundancy, a bit of verb nonsense, and something about back to school that I think means “back-to-school shopping”:

Clearly, nobody cares about this sad little company blog, because there’s just more nonsense here, which I don’t even want to discuss:

Somebody with some basic knowledge of English vocabulary would have used a different word here:

And someone who attended college would know that there are more than these two options when your kids go to college: They can live on campus or rent an apartment. The writer doesn’t even consider that students can live in a sorority or fraternity house, rent a room, or live at home or with relatives. Those are not options. But Yahoo! provides a calculator that can help ascertain which of the two options is better:

According to the blog, if “you agree to the latter,” you are agreeing to a co-signer. Not to be a co-signer, which might actually make sense. And if you consider there’s only one kind of “bad behavior” — which the writer doesn’t name — then somehow you know it will affect your credit records.

Lordie, I guess this “sentence” should come as no surprise to me:

What does this blog say about Yahoo!? My guess is, no one at Yahoo! cares about the blog because no one reads it.


You’ve had over a week

It’s been over a week now that the brilliant minds on the Yahoo! front page have been writing about Isaac. Don’t you think that’s enough time to learn how to spell the name of the tropical storm?

Was a hex put on Yahoo?

Was a hex placed on Yahoo! News’ “Who Knew” so that the writer was unable to choose the correct word?

Is a cancellation possible?

Is it possible to just cancel the entire Yahoo! front page? Cancellation would mean far fewer errors released to the ether:

According to the American Heritage Dictionary (which is part of the Yahoo! network), canceled and canceling each have one L, but cancellation has two.

You really can’t put it just anywhere

You know, when you want to form the plural of a word, you generally just add an S. At the end.
At the end of the word that should be plural, not at the end of the word after it. Makes sense, no? Apparently not to the writer for the Yahoo! front page:

See, the writer is trying to tell you that the names have a meaning. There are multiple names and each has a meaning. Not one name with many meanings.

This is one of those stupid mistakes you find on Yahoo! that doesn’t deserve the space it takes to explain it.

Casting about for the right word

To the casual reader, the verb triples on the Yahoo! front page seems correct. But to the grammar nerd, it casts doubt on the writer:

The word cast is a collective noun that can take either a plural or a singular verb. If the members of the cast act as individuals, then cast is considered plural and takes a singular verb. If they act as a unit, the word is singular with a singular verb.

If the cast worked together as a unit, then the word triples is correct, but the pronoun their would be incorrect. It refers to cast, and should be its, which is weird, no?

Did you know?

Did you know that a missing word is one of the most common mistakes in writing on the Web? When proofreading, be sure that you look for missing words. You don’t want to make the same mistake as the writer for Yahoo! Music made:

I guess it’s no worse than yesterday’s misspelling on the same page:

Just a tad confused

Let us be generous and say that the writer for the Yahoo! front page was just a tad confused.  Unable to figure out if he or she was writing about Winona Ryder or Wynonna Judd the writer came up with this:

It’s the kind of confusion that would be easy to clear up,  given enough motivation. But writers for Yahoo! don’t seem all that motivated to write accurately. By the way, the woman in question is Wynonna Judd.

It could be worse

This misspelling of postpartum on the Yahoo! front page could be worse:

They could have called it post-part ’em.

You think the haircut is humiliating?

Here’s what’s is really humiliating:

Thanks to the folks at the Yahoo! front page for this lesson in humiliation.

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