1. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    People who constantly point out grammar errors

    Discussion in 'Entertainment' started by Steerpike, Apr 1, 2016.

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  2. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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  3. SethLoki
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    SethLoki Unemployed Autodidact Contributor

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    I'm of the mind to spot bad grammar. I let it slide though for fear of sounding condescending (so a closet jerk?). Also, I'm fully aware I'm no paragon in the field and would likely be knocked from my pedal stool if I attempted it. :)

    I can offer up the lovely word supercilious though for those that do.





    * pedal stool gag nicked from IT Crowd sitcom
     
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  4. HelloImRex
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    HelloImRex Contributing Member

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    If someone makes a typo, whateevr. If someone messes up, commas, whatever. If someone makes a giant run on sentence and they never want to end it for some reason and just keep putting in extra clauses for no reason until the grammar inevitably falls apart, that's a little annoying but I can live with it so in conclusion whatever. If someone starts using there when it should be their or to when it should be too or your when it should be you're then that's bad. They can't be my roommate and I would probably vote them guilty of murder on a jury if an item of evidence was a letter they wrote where they did that even if I thought they were innocent.
     
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  5. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    There must be a name for the phenomenon where if you post to correct someone's SPAG there is inevitably a SPAG error in your post. Like Godwin's law.

    Sometimes in introductory posts on here it's clear that the poster has worked REALLY hard to make sure there are no SPAG problems with the post. I guess they expect us all to be grammar Nazis (hi Godwin). Hopefully they soon see most of us are fairly casual with our posts.
     
  6. SethLoki
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    SethLoki Unemployed Autodidact Contributor

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    A typocrit ? :D
     
  7. Wayjor Frippery
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    Wayjor Frippery Contributing Member

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    But it's OK to correct/discuss SPAG in people's work, isn't it? This being a writing forum and all, or have I missed the point somewhere?
     
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  8. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    That's fine, if it's in the workshop and/or they've asked to be corrected.
     
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  9. HelloImRex
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    HelloImRex Contributing Member

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    typocrite* hate people who spell there fake words wrong
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2016
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  10. LostThePlot
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    LostThePlot Contributing Member

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    Is the asterisk silent?

    Uncertain if that typo was ironically implied or not but I fixed it anyway because I literally cannot help myself.
     
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  11. Wayjor Frippery
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    Wayjor Frippery Contributing Member

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    Phew.

    I thought I was in danger of being a spasmodic muscular twitch.
     
  12. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    JERK! :D
     
  13. SethLoki
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    SethLoki Unemployed Autodidact Contributor

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    That's right, tic him off.
     
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  14. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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  15. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Certainly. This was just a bit of humor :)
     
  16. Wayjor Frippery
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    Wayjor Frippery Contributing Member

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    Quite. I feel silly for having thought otherwise. :supercute:
     
  17. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I had someone lay into me not long ago in one of my interpreter/translator groups (of all venues) for asking questions about idiomatic and/or incorrect grammar in Spanish. I didn't grow up with Spanish - it was something I acquired later in life - so there are still plenty of regional and idiomatic uses that sometimes stump me. I asked a question the other day concerning a strange use of the preposition de in a sentence that was making use of a verb that also felt strange for the meaning that context was indicating. I asked, and one of the group members held forth concerning this question and all my previous questions, basically to the tune of "if you know what it means, why are you always being such an ass about the way people speak?"

    Clearly a nerve had been struck.

    I replied in the most academic way possible that as a professional interpreter and translator, it's not just my job to know the corresponding words for each language I am interpreting or translating, but also to know their function, their linkage, the way they affect one another, syntactic interplay, their meanings, their connotations, etc. I also explained that I wanted to be sure that what I had read was just a simple error, not something to be stored away for future reference as an idiomatic expression.

    This did not assuage the umbrage she expressed in her charmingly broken English. And the whole time I was reading her response, all I could think was that I would have been happy to explain to her why her errors were errors and the logic she could employ in rectifying them across the board.
     
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  18. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    Yeah. I wouldn't correct anybody's SPAG here on forum posts. I'm pretty slack about it in the workshop as well.

    I am inclined to mention a grammatical mistake if the writer keeps doing it a lot throughout a workshop entry—such as a comma splice, or mispunctuation of dialogue. Mistakes like that can become ingrained habit if nobody mentions it. However, we're not proofreaders, we're just fellow writers trying to offer insight into what gets put up on the workshop for critique. A few typos in an unpolished piece are less important than getting story flow going in a good direction, etc.

    What I find difficult is encountering a piece that is so ridden with grammatical mistakes that I don't know where to begin. Sometimes it's so bad I can't make head or tail of what the person is trying to say. Unless there is a wonderful spark in it somewhere, I usually just pass by. Writers do really need to get a grip on basic grammar if they want to get published. There isn't any quick fix to the problem. It's back to 'school' for study and practice. Lots of reading helps, too. You read a lot of good books and you'll subliminally come to recognise when something isn't 'right' in your own writing.
     
  19. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    Interesting article. I'm not sure where I'd stand on their scale. I don't consider myself an introvert, and I don't hassle people about their grammar. But I do make certain judgements on the basis of it.

    People with a poor grasp of grammar tend to be non-readers and maybe poorly educated. They also may be dyslexic, which is a condition I wasn't aware of many years ago. (They might also non-native English speakers, which puts them WAY above me, and is a huge positive rather than a negative.) Any of these things may be a result of circumstances a person can't control, so I try not to judge negatively until I have more information. However, the flaw does register, I'm afraid. It's not a fatal flaw (unless you want to become a published writer or a journalist or a grammar teacher) but it does get noticed.

    Anybody can miss a typo during proofreading, but not giving a shit about it is definitely a negative in my book.
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2016
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  20. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    When I first started critiquing I sought out pieces where I could comment on the SPAG because I wasn't confident enough in critiquing everything else. Now it's the opposite--I'd rather be commenting on the higher-level stuff than commas and capitals. Though I still point out recurring problems.

    I think SPAG is the easiest thing to learn or, if not, the bit that you can pay someone to fix for you. The same can't be said for characterisation, plot, etc unless you're hiring a ghost writer.
     
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  21. Doctore
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    Doctore Member

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    I don't have anything to add, but you all are nuts and I love you for it. Thanks for the laugh.
     
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  22. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I'm more likely to gloss over mistakes if: (this is about general communication - not writing novels)
    1) I respect the person writing it and therefore assume a certain level of skill and intelligence and/or
    2) the content sounds intelligent and/or
    3) there're only one or two mistakes, especially if they're pretty common ones, like mixing up their and there.​

    Quite often though, you can tell if it's an honest mistake or if the person genuinely think their mistake is actually correct. I'd point it out if it's the latter case, especially if the person wants to be a writer. Honest mistakes though - nah. Like, I get the meaning, so why be anal about it? It's similar to hearing and understanding different accents - if you get the speaker's meaning, don't be an ass about it.

    But in an actual piece of narrative - I wouldn't bother reading it if I saw more than a few odd mistakes here and there. I'd lose quite a bit of faith in the work too if it starts off with their and there mixed up!
     
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  23. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    That's a funny one. To my horror, I occasionally catch myself doing a there/their/they're kind of mistake. Or an its/it's mistake. Of course I catch it (usually) and correct it. I never am in doubt of what the right spelling should be of these words ...but sometimes my brain just blips.

    Mind you, you have no idea how many times I've typed 'dog' instead of 'god'—and vice-versa (or is it verse-visa?) No, not a Freudian slip, just a constant typo in my lexicon of typos. And I struggle to type 'Scotland' sometimes as well. I'm very prone to typing Scoltand. Stupid.
     
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  24. Tenderiser
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    Tenderiser Not a man Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    I do the dog/god thing ALL the time. :D

    Also, one of my clients at work has the surname Lynch and I always, without fail, type Lunch the first time. I even did it here in this post. EVERY time.
     
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  25. Wayjor Frippery
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    Wayjor Frippery Contributing Member

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    I almost always write freinds and siad the first time round. That last one's a bugger and drives me mad.
     
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  26. Wreybies
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    Wreybies The Ops Pops Operations Manager Staff Contest Administrator Supporter Contributor

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    My work related bête noire is from/form. The nature of my work (legal) is such that both of these two words pop up quite a bit. My ability to type one when it should be the other is equally likely in either direction. o_O
     
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