Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Pity the proo reader

Us artists, especially us blond artists, are frequently disorganized.
For example, I have set aside some copies of the Chattanooga Times Free Press for purposes of discussion here -- and now can't find them.
Alas, we must now depend on my fading memory. However, thanks to all the great advances in technology, if I make any misteaks, well, shucks, we'll just come back later and eddit them out.
So, what I will discuss today is some more miserable proofreading and/or miserable copy editing on the editorial pages.
Before we go further, let me urge you to refresh your memory, if you're a previous visitor, or, if you're new, to acquaint yourself with the major reason this blog was initiated: Please go to the archives and look at the second entry, "Shapes."
I'll wait ...
Welcome back.
Recent letters to the editor have contained some intriguing comments.
One said something about some proposal being "tauted."
I would not urge anyone to bet that the author used that spelling, but certainly a real editor should have corrected it -- although the possibility is great the alleged editor made the error.
Another said parents should be "roll models."
I would think that, in Chattanooga, perhaps parents should rather be biscuit models -- but that wouldn't make any sense, either. Although it would be funnier.
The Chattanooga Times Free Press, like so many other publications, needs a major infusion of knowledge, knowledge of grammar, punctuation, spelling -- of general language and language use.
Of course there will be mistakes. We all make 'em. That's why God gave us erasers for pencils; He knew ahead of time we would all make mistakes -- and that is why we have a word for it, MIStakes.
Still, the consistent sloppiness on the pages of the Times Free Press, and especially on the editorial pages, should make even newspaper owners and bosses wake up, at least enough to become aware that sloppy editing is one reason for declining readership.

Oh, about that title: Many years ago, some publication or other was lamenting the sloppiness of another's editing and typesetting, noting error after error. It extended its sympathy, saying "Pity the proo reader."
Poor editing is one reason readers, proo and otherwise, are lessening in number.

1 comment:

  1. That was great; it reminds me of something from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch!