Thursday, July 17, 2008

In My World, Spelling Still Counts!

I was online this morning, trolling around my regular spots and looking for something to blog about, when I happened upon this banner ad:

Sorry, folks. There's just no excuse for this kind of sloppiness. How many sets of eyes do you think this ad must have passed by before it ever made it online? And no one captured a rather blatant spelling error?

Nothing irritates me more than bad spelling - especially in the professional arena. God has given us spell check programs for a reason, but even on top of that, if I'm a retailer spending millions of dollars a year on advertising, I'm going to demand a little quality control! Is it really too much to ask to have a junior underling (or two) proofread every bit of advertising that goes out the door?

I must say, as a disclaimer, that I won an 8th grade spelling bee, so perhaps I'm a bit of a stickler... But to me, any company that posts misspelled signs, or allows misspelled ads in print, is a bit sloppy and I have to question whether they are as careless with the product or service they are selling. It's by no means necessarily a deal-breaker, but it does cross my mind.

This spelling issue is becoming more and more of a problem online as companies that never had to worry about it are now selling their products and services on the Internet. We especially had to emphasize spellcheck at WMAL when we started publishing our radio copy on the web.

There is also the theory (probably well-founded) that more and more people entering the workforce are spelling-challenged. Millennials grew up with spell check, so they've never really needed to learn how to spell properly. Plus - they spend their lives text messaging, where no one writes complete words, let along correctly spelled ones!

The New York Times has also noticed a sloppy trend in advertising... You can read all about it here.

Have a goode day!


Bill Thompson said...

Rite U R, O Wyz Wun!

As a fellow Stickler (we should, after all, be capitalized) I cringe at such instances of sloppy writing, sloppy editing, and sloppy proofreading. But my cringe becomes a scowl when I hear, "But you knew what I meant!"

Spelling, grammar, and punctuation are the traffic laws of literacy. Break them at will, and sooner or later our writing will resemble the chaotic roads of a third-world country.

John Matthews said...

Bully for you, Bill - a Stickler who's perhaps even more anal than yours truly. I hope our young Millennial colleague (she knows who she is) will take heed of your sage wisdom and counsel...

Chris said...

ARRRGHHHHH (if that's spelled right...) I absolutely hate typos...(and people who aren't punctual!)

Dr. Obnoxious, PhD said...

My generation is going to be the one that completely kills proper English. I don't want to learn British English (almost another language with all the differences). Oh, peers, why must you end the life of proper English with cell phones and slang. I'll be the only one talking normal, I guess... (Any millenials before me- this doesn't really apply to you- I think I'm the generation after you guys and gals...)