Prom? Is that your question?

It’s a short question, and it may mean something to a Yahoo! Style reader, but to me it’s nonsense:

prom ques sty hp

Prom? That’s the question? Uh, no. The question is: Are these kids too young to be dressing up for ‘prom’? The entire headline is a question, not just the word in the quotation marks.

Editors are mum

When asked why they put quotation marks around a character’s name and why they thought “details are mum” made sense, the editors at yahoo.com are mum:

fp mum

If the name of the movie Mr. Affleck will direct is “Batman,” then it deserves quotation marks. But it’s not. That’s the name of the character that will be central to a movie. Character names don’t get special treatment. You wouldn’t write about “Romeo” and “Juliet” would you? (Well, if you’re a Yahoo! editor you might, but the rest of the English-speaking world wouldn’t.) And why tell us that “details are mum”? Because aren’t details always silent? Perhaps it was the producer who is mum and details are missing or nonexistent.

How many models?

Can anyone explain to me why Yahoo! Style writers don’t know how to form the possessive of a common noun?  Why would anyone think models’s could possibly be correct?

modelss bones sty

Maybe the writer didn’t know if she was writing about one model (and the possessive model’s) or more than one (and the possessive models’). So she covered both possibilities with models’s.

But how do you explain her ignorance of using single quotation marks within a quote? Maybe she played hooky the day that was taught in seventh grade.

So, if she was writing about two or more models, she should have written: the models’ “‘bones’ weren’t visible…

Stuck on stupid

Sometimes I think the editors at yahoo.com are just stuck on stupid. They keep repeating the same mistakes. A few days ago, they couldn’t agree on how to refer to a Mexican drug lord. And today, they’re faced with the same issue. Is his name simply El Chapo?

fp el chapo no quo

Or is it Chapo and does it require quotation marks?

fp chapo quo

I’m thinkin’ that maybe the editors don’t know that they’re in disagreement because even they don’t read yahoo.com.

Pick one

Displaying once again that the people who write for yahoo.com have no means to communicate with each other, someone decides that a drug lord’s nickname needs to be in quotation marks:

fp el chapo w

while a colleague decides the punctuation is unnecessary:

fp el chapo no

It doesn’t matter which one the writers and editors chose. They should just pick one style and go with it. But first, they need to establish a way to communicate their decision. I hear there are communication methods like telephone, email, instant messenger, and tin cans connected by a string. One of those might work.

Was it all the Christmas excitement?

In all the excitement surrounding Christmas, the folks at yahoo.com forgot to consult each other about the Elf on the Shelf phenomenon. Does it require quotation marks, as if it weren’t the real name of the mischievous doll?

fp elf quo

Certainly not! You wouldn’t put air quotes around Barbie or Ken, would you? That might be the thinking that the editor  who wrote this went through:

fp elf

Couldn’t those folks talk to each other and figure out how this Internet giant would write about the subject? Nah. That would require that they care about the quality of writing on their site.

‘You don’t know me’: Reader reacts

What could possibly be wrong with this headline on Yahoo! Parenting?

colon quot parent

The punctuation. Two punctuation marks never go before a closing quotation mark: a colon and a semicolon.

Do they work for the same company?

Has Yahoo! broken up into separate companies already? I think maybe it has. Maybe the company has also broken up the responsibilities for yahoo.com, meting out duties to different companies in different countries.

Here’s my first clue: Someone somewhere thinks that dark Web needs quotation marks and a capital W:

fp dark web quot

And on the same page, someone somewhere thought that it’s dark web, without the cap W and the quotation marks:

fp dark web lc

But wait! There’s more! Also on the page, someone somewhere decided that it’s dark Web, with the cap W, but without quotation marks:

fp dark web uc

Pretty bad, huh?

They’re not really ugly holiday sweaters

Here’s a use for quotation marks on Yahoo! Makers that indicates in spite of the fact these are ugly holiday sweaters, they are not actually ugly holiday sweaters:

quot ugly sweat mak

Quotation marks can be used to indicate direct speech, a title, or irony. So what’s their purpose in this headline? I think it’s to indicate that the editor has no idea when to use punctuation.

The depth of ignorance

This might actually be funny if it weren’t for the fact that it shows the depth of ignorance of one Yahoo! Makers writer:

waddle diy

A turkey’s “waddle” is its clumsy walk. But it seems that the writer was just kidding! Maybe that’s why she put those quotation marks around the word. I’m pretty sure she meant wattle, which is skin hanging from a turkey’s neck or throat. It is not the “red floppy part on top of the head.” That would be a comb. And it is not the “red floppy part … under the chin” because turkey’s do not have chins.

Well, it looks like the writer finally concluded that the area under a turkey’s beak is not really a chin. I think. I have no idea why this genius decided to put apostrophes about the word the second time she used it and not the first time. And those apostrophes are wrong, as is the placement of the period.

Imagine, a professional writer getting paid to screw up one single sentence in so many creative ways. Maybe she’s not the only ignorant staffer at Yahoo!.

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