You write the top, I’ll write the bottom

In the continuing saga “You Write the Top, I’ll Write the Bottom,” we once again see the results of hyphenation indecision:

fp walk-of-shame

You write the top, I’ll write the bottom

In this episode of “You Write the Top, I’ll Write the Bottom,” we find a missing hyphen or an unnecessary hyphen.

fp plane tracking

Seems like they just can’t agree on much of anything at yahoo.com.

How many mistakes can you make?

How many mistakes can you make in a single sentence? If you’re the writer for Yahoo! Style, at least four. You’d start by claiming that Jennifer Hudson has children. She does not; she has one son. Then you’d omit the hyphen in the noun carry-on. Then you’d screw up identifying the children in the picture and claim that SpongeBob doesn’t need a capital B:

jhud

Here’s the picture. The boy in the plaid shirt is Jennifer Hudson’s only child. The boy not in the “gingham button down” is the one with the SpongeBob “rolling suitcase.”

jhud pic

On the plus side, the writer did spell Jennifer Hudson’s name correctly. There’s that.

Ack! I’m running out of red ink!

Few things irk me more than really bad writing by people who are paid to write. Unless it’s management that allows really bad writing to be published. And one indication of bad writing is the amount of red ink I bleed on a page. So, this article from Yahoo! Style is really bad and I’m really irked.

Omitting a hyphen from an age is a relatively minor, but totally unnecessary, mistake:

bush 1

Using the wrong word? Not minor mistake in my opinion, although I alternately agree and disagree that the writer should be taken out behind to the woodshed:

bush 2

It’s hard to imagine a writer confusing alternatively with alternately. With mistakes like that, this writer will never receive the acclaim of legitimate writers, unless she acquires the services of a competent editor:

bush 3

Her word choice continues to be sketchy at best: No, didgeridoos and balalaikas are not a few instruments, they are two instruments:

bush 4

More red ink! I need more red ink! Or at least an explanation for why there’s a the in front of Bush’s mystique but none in front of performer, why she didn’t put the only in front of the word it modifies (which is one), why it’s not an accidental death, and why this writer can’t match a verb (which should be have kept) to its subject:

bush 5

Just how old is a bohemian? And is a “slight bohemian age” like dog-years?

bush 6

I guess we should expect a writer who doesn’t know the difference between a bohemian age and a bohemian edge to care about spelling a name correctly, like Clare Waight Keller:

bush 7

Are you still with me? If so, then you got to the best of the worst word usages of all times: the blouses with the bellowing sleeves. I’ve heard of loud prints, but never loud sleeves. I wonder if they’re red.

Not in a medically induced coma

There’s no hyphen in medically induced, despite what you may read on the Yahoo! front page:

fp medically-induced

When an adverb ending in -LY precedes an adjective, there’s no need to join them with a hyphen. The -LY is the signal to the reader that it’s an adverb and that it modifies the word that follows it.

On the off chance you’re a writer…

On the off chance that the writer for Yahoo! Style would like to improve her writing, I suggest she study some common English idioms (like on the off chance) as well as the use of the hyphen to form compound adjectives (like two-piece):

in the off chance style

Postpartum depression

This is really depressing. Why would anyone put a hyphen in postpartum? Don’t the folks at Yahoo! Parenting know that it’s one unhyphenated word? Apparently not.

post-partum parent

Translating trans-Atlantic

It doesn’t take simultaneous translation to spot the error on the Yahoo! front page:

fp trans-atlantic

The correct spelling is transatlantic — no capital A, no hyphen.

Try to keep up

In July 2013, rapper Jay Z announced he was dropping the hyphen from his name. It’s about time the brain trust at Yahoo! Style caught up with the “news”:

jay-z style

Refashion cash-in

Somebody at Yahoo! Finance needs to check the dictionary and then remove the hyphen from cash-in in the headline and the video:

cash-in finance

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 893 other followers

%d bloggers like this: