A study a few years ago (which makes it ancient in Internet time) revealed that typos, grammatical errors, and the like eroded a Web site’s credibility. So, it wasn’t unexpected that I was skeptical of what I was reading in the first two paragraphs of an article on Yahoo! Shine:
The breakup of stateside didn’t make me feel any better:
A misplaced period (in the US, it goes before the closing quotation mark) and a missing article. That misplaced hyphen changed Shiloh Jolie-Pitt to a little girl whose first name is Shiloh-Jolie (which is kinda cute). Now I’m really questioning the reliability of the whole article.
This one had me scratching my head and dusting dandruff off my keyboard: Did Carla’s baby have four stepbrothers and stepsisters? Or four stepbrothers and some unknown number of sisters? It was pretty easy to confirm that there’s no hyphen in stepbrother. But what about the sisters? They exist only in the mind of the author. As do the stepbrothers. Turns out, the newborn has four half-brothers. But that’s almost like sisters, right?
An overhyphenated overexposure and an unnecessary comma just make me feel more uneasy about trusting this writer:
I was unaware that the French froth over other countries. It seems so out of character for the Gauls.
Frothing Frenchmen, a misnamed toddler, nonexistent sisters. See? I told you not to trust typo-riddled articles.