Why? Fie!

Why did the editors at Yahoo News think this was OK? It’s not.

The Wi-Fi Alliance owns the trademark for Wi-Fi, which has a hyphen and two capital letters. It’s like Crock-Pot, another registered trademark that Yahoo staffers often mistreat.

The real Twitter problem

When an Internet giant makes a mistake in a headline on its front page, it’s impossible to ignore:

The real problem is the misuse of a trademark. When referring to the social network, Twitter is a trademark deserving a capital letter.

Scotch that spelling!

Some trademarks are so common in English that they have become common nouns. But Scotch tape isn’t one of  them. The Yahoo! Style writer should have capitalized Scotch or referred to the sticky stuff as cellophane tape:

Hard to beat this

It’s hard to beat this for the number of errors in a single sentence:


I can’t explain why the Yahoo! Style writer included a registered trademark symbol with a product name, unless she’s under the illusion that she has to protect a trademark. Which brings me to the question: Why didn’t she recognize Velcro as a registered trademark, too? Because that would be as wrong as not capitalizing Velcro.

Don’t you wish we could all be flies on the wall when the writer discusses this with her editor? What would her argument be? Oh, never mind. I forgot: Yahoo! doesn’t believe in editors.

Does your Rolodex include an editor?

Perhaps if the writer for Yahoo! TV had the services of an editor, he would have known that Rolodex is a trademark meriting a capital letter:


File that away for future reference.

They’re too little

The editor-in-chief for Yahoo! TV went a little light when tapping out what should be Little Leaguers:

little leaguers tv

Little League and Little Leaguer are trademarks of Little League Baseball, Incorporated.

It’s not a gray area

In the U.S., the preferred spelling of the color that’s a mix of black and white is gray. But the writers at Yahoo! Style don’t care about that. They also don’t care that when referring to the footwear, Converse is a registered trademark:

grey converse sty

What’s so common about Botox?

It’s not a generic term. It’s not a common noun. A registered trademark, Botox gets undercapitalized on yahoo.com:

fp botoxx

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.

Where did you get that idea?

Why? Why do some writers (and apparently their editors, too) think that you have to include a registered trademark symbol ® on registered trademarks? I’m at a complete loss to explain this on Yahoo! Makers:

reg tm diy

This is just ludicrous. Can you imagine if I had to include the symbol every time I wrote about Yahoo® on my Lenovo® Think Pad®? Stop it now!

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