Where have you been?

Where has the writer for Yahoo! front page for the last two weeks? In a yurt in Siberia? In a monastery with no contact with the outside world? How would you explain this misspelling of Dylann Roof — a name that dominated headlines?

fp dylan

July 4th fireworks

If you live in the United States, you’ve heard of July 4th and the tradition of exploding fireworks. But if you write headlines for Yahoo! Makers you might be a little confused between the difference between firework (which is device that is exploded) and fireworks, the actual display of the explosive devices. And you might not know how to spell July:

julty diy

That’s two mistakes that are simply made by careless writers or editors.

Barack Obama: Forgotten already?

He’s been in office for more than six years, but it seems that the writers at Yahoo! Makers have already forgotten how to spell Barack Obama’s name:

barak diy


I admit it: Sometimes I’m just really nitpicky. I read a sentence like this one on Yahoo! Makers and say (sometimes out loud): What the heck does the writer mean?

picnic 1

Is she saying that sitting down at a dinner table (as opposed to preparing that dinner) requires no thought, but a “picnic situation” (which I presume is different from a picnic) requires thought and planning? I don’t get the comparison. I also don’t get why logisics and differnt passed through the spell-checker unchecked. Oh, yeah, I forgot: Yahoo! writers don’t use spell-checkers.   They also don’t believe in proofreading for missing words. But I quibble.

And and I don’t understand how a writer can misspell separately, since separate appears on every list of the 100 most commonly misspelled words. Shouldn’t a professional writer know that?

picnic seperately

Is it nitpicky to expect that a writer would know that picnicing, if it were a real word, would be pronounced pick-nice-ing?

picnic ing

In order to maintain the hard C sound at the end of picnic, the writer should have added a K: picnicking. But I pick nits.

Don’t trust your memory

Don’t trust your memory when it comes to spelling a celebrity’s name. Google it. If you don’t, you could look as ignorant (and arrogant) as the Yahoo! Style writer who misspelled Will Ferrell’s name:

farrell sty

Cara Delevingne missing a little something

Cara Delevingne shouldn’t expect special treatment from the editors at Yahoo! Style, even when it appears in a headline on the site’s home page:

delevigne sty

They’ll mangle her name just as they did Jessica Williams‘ and Rose Byrne‘s and Pierpaolo Piccioli’s name — and the names of many others.

A standout will stand out

Using the wrong word will stand out to readers. That’s what the writer for Yahoo! Makers did with this standout of a misspelling:

standout diy

The noun is standout (one word); the phrasal verb is stand out.

Mashed up polka dots

You’d think that people writing for a website devoted to fashion, like Yahoo! Style, would know how to spell polka dot. You would be wrong:

polkadots sty

I think Gary Busey wrote that headline

It’s a headline worthy of Gary Busey. Was the yahoo.com writer suffering from a traumatic head injury or simply a controlled substance?

fp garey busey

Mad Libs of the Internet

Maybe it’s the result of a tight deadline. Maybe it’s the product of too many margaritas the night before. Whatever the reason for the errors in this excerpt from Yahoo! Style, readers are bound to notice and judge:

frisbee-like sty

Readers might not notice (or care about) the capitalized Queen. But if you follow the Associated Press style (as well as the style edicts of other authorities), you don’t capitalize queen unless it comes directly before the queen’s name.

Anyone is bound to notice that you’re left to fill in the blank between Middleton looked and in. It’s kinda like Mad Libs. “Gimme an adjective!” I’m going to suggest disheveled. Or maybe sesquipedalian.

Fashionistas wanting to clone the duchess’ style will be disappointed to learn that there is no Locke & Co. selling a Marisbel hat. There is a Marisabel hat offered by Lock & Co., though it retails for considerably more than $1.40. It’s Frisbee-like in its shape. And by Frisbee I mean that plastic disk that gets thrown around as well as the trademark that gets thrown around as if it were a common noun.


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