Won followed by another

Here’s one major gaffe from Yahoo! Style, followed by a complete headscratcher:

won sty

Why do Yahoo! writers and editors have so much trouble with forming the possessive of a plural noun? It’s simple: coworkers is the plural; coworkers‘ is the possessive.

It takes a team

It took a team Yahoo! Style staffers to come up with this ridiculously wrong possessive of the plural noun models:

modelss sty

Apparently there was some disagreement in this brain trust as to where the apostrophe goes — before or after the S. So that put it before and after an S. (Just in case someone on the Style staff is reading this, here’s the scoop: the possessive of models is models’.)

SEALs the deal

Nice try. But wrong. The plural of SEAL (a member of the U.S. Navy’s special forces) is SEALs. Don’t believe what you read on the Yahoo! front page:

fp seals cap

Confused about plural possessives?

Do you ever get confused about forming the possessive of a plural noun? Where does that apostrophe go? Before or after the S? If you find yourself in a quandary over possessives, just do what the writer for Yahoo! Celebrity did: Put in an extra S so that you can place that apostrophe before and after an S:

sisterss apos cel

Writers’ mistakes like this happen all the time on Yahoo!.

Hang on!

Hang on! I gotta check something on Yahoo! Style:

hanger ons sty

Did I really read that? Does the writer really think that is the correct plural of hanger-on (notice the hyphen?) The plural is hangers-on, and it’s similar to plural of other hyphenated nouns: mothers-in-law, editors-in-chief, runners-up, and presidents-elect.

This editor needs an editor

The editor who wrote this for Yahoo! Style could use an editor herself:

editor in chiefs sty

The plural of editor-in-chief is editors-in-chief.

It’s not the plural

Does the writer for Yahoo! Style think that alumnus is the plural of alumnu, or is she just grammatically challenged?

alumnus sty

Alumnus refers to one male graduate, although some writers use it to refer to a graduate regardless of gender. Its plural is alumni, which refers to male graduates or a group of male and female graduates. (A female grad is an alumna; its plural is alumnae.)

If all that is too much for this writer, she should have used alums, graduates, or grads.

Reverse that!

The writer for Yahoo! Style should consider reversing her knowledge of apostrophes: Wherever she thinks she needs one, she should omit it. And wherever she omitted an apostrophe, she should add one:

stores no apos sty

Do I repeat myself? repeat myself?

The carelessly repeated words in this article from Yahoo! Makers aren’t the worst mistakes a writer can make. They’re just the worst easily avoidable mistakes.

the the aircrafts diy

Any writer who proofreads her work would have spotted those. The mistake that really chaps my hide is the use of aircrafts as a plural. The plural of aircraft is aircraft. If the writer wanted to emphasize that multiple planes are involved, then she should have used that word.

Did you draw a blank?

Did the writer for Yahoo! Makers draw a blank when trying to write about that thing in a bureau that slides in and out and that is used for storage?

draw diy

It’s called a drawer. If you’re from Boston, like me, you may pronounce it draw, but you spell it with that -ER at the end. But that’s the least of this writer’s problems. She just doesn’t know how to form the plural of a noun, insisting on including an apostrophe:

draw kitchens apost diy

She makes a common, everyday mistake with this spelling:

draw everyday

It wouldn’t surprise me if she spelled it that way every day, ’cause here it is again:

draw everyday 2

If the first one is a typo, then the second one is a misspelling. But I’ll concede that this is a typo that even a spell-checker wouldn’t spot (but a competent editor would):

draw if

Here’s a creative spelling of bathroom and a mysterious sparklingly where sparkling would do:

draw bath room

How many more mistakes can one writer make in one article? At least one more, although this may constitute two:

draw like was

I’m not sure what that’s supposed to mean. I wish Yahoo had writers who could write and editors who could edit; it makes life way easier for readers.


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