electricland: (Alice - huh?)
I have, among other things, CityNews's RSS feed on my iGoogle page. They frequently have headlines that make my day just that little bit brighter. I suspect that some of this has to do with them clinging to title case, which Adds That Extra Level Of Significance to whatever story it is that has just popped up. Sort of like the Onion, only with things that have actually happened.

The most recent example: Jogger Refuses To Panic After Rabid Fox Clamps Down On Her Arm.


May. 9th, 2008 05:02 pm
electricland: (insane iconfly)
No, I haven't let this story go yet. More news on the train quarantine and I am chuckling over this:
The elderly female who was transferred to a Timmins hospital is doing much better, [Dr. Donald] Low [microbiologist-in-chief at Mt. Sinai and one of the go-to guys for infectious disease outbreaks] added.

"She's fine," he said. "She's a febrile." Everything worked as it should in the time of a potential health disaster, said Low.
I am chuckling because:

a) I do not think he said what you thought he said.
b) He probably said "afebrile", which (knowing doctors as I do) is exactly what I would expect a doctor to say to a reporter without much health background instead of, oh, "she doesn't have a fever."
c) Yeah, that could be Word's fault or a copy editor's fault. I don't care. It's still funny.


Oct. 17th, 2007 03:40 pm
electricland: (insane iconfly)
Dear reviewer:

Please do not ask me to replace "call your child's doctor right away" with "seek medical attention right away". Your alternative is abstract. It has needlessly complex words. It is not helpful. It pokes sharp sticks at the principles of plain language. If parents should not be calling their child's doctor, what should they be doing? Exactly? Multiple options are also acceptable.

Thanking you in advance for your kind attention,

electricland: (insane iconfly)
To the writers and copy editors of the Metro and other newspapers, also anyone else who makes this mistake, I offer the following definitions (English words from the Oxford Canadian Dictionary):

1. cache: (n) a hiding place; a place, structure, or device used for storing food, supplies, equipment, etc.; the contents of a cache; an auxiliary computer memory from which high-speed retrieval is possible; (v.tr.) put in a cache.

2. caché: (Fr.) hidden. NB: This is not an English word.

3. cachet: (n) a distinguishing mark or seal; prestige; a flat capsule enclosing a dose of unpleasant-tasting medicine.

1 has one syllable. 2 and 3 have two syllables and do, in fact, sound pretty similar (although not exactly alike, as anyone who has spent long hours in an elementary French class learning to tell the difference between what an accent aigu, an accent grave, and an accent circonflexe sound like will tell you). However, WHEN YOU USE 2 INSTEAD OF 3 YOU MAKE THE BABY JESUS CRY. STOP IT. Just because it is French-sounding DOES NOT MEAN that it always needs an accent, OK? Lots and lots of French words don't have accents. Unless you are referring to the recent movie there is no need to use 2 at all. It's possible that you are working by analogy from "cliché", which does indeed have an accent, but really, they're just two words. Make an effort. (Or, as Amélie said, faites un effort.)

And while I'm on the subject, "latte" is an Italian word. It doesn't need an accent EITHER. If it did have an accent then it would be pronounced with the emphasis on the second syllable, and it isn't. Stop that too, baristas.

(Edit: Also also: "Very" in French is spelled très, not trés. Yes, I know it's a teeny tiny distinction. No, I'm not going to get over it. It makes me twitch.)

In other news, best headline of the day, from the entertainment section: "Slug film flawed".
electricland: (insane iconfly)
(no. 2 in a continuing series)

...people who wish to use the word "criteria" will be required to know that it is a plural noun, and use an appropriate verb. The same applies to "phenomena".

The New England Journal of Medicine should know better.
electricland: (Default)
So, question.

Random check of one of the citations reveals typos in two authors' names and the journal title.

Does this mean I have to check them ALL? Because, please no.
electricland: (insane iconfly)

I suppose I should have foreseen the 22-page reference list. In (I think) APA style. I haaaaaate APA style. Parentheses and periods and commas and SO MUCH EXTRANEOUS CRAP I CAN'T TAKE IT, GOD! Ahem.

*sob* *whine*

electricland: (insane iconfly)
1. Thou shalt not randomly capitalize words.
2. Thou shalt not use italics or bolding for emphasis, unless thou canst give thy copy editor a really good reason why.
3. Thou shalt not use clip art. Nay, not even though thy text useth an orchestra metaphor and thy clip art library hath an orchestra image.
4. Thou shalt not pile sub-sub-heading upon sub-heading unto the sixth heading level and beyond.
5. Thou shalt pay close attention to the rules of parallelism and balance.
6. Thou shalt not use the phrase "as well as" as a synonym for "and."
7. Thou shalt use the serial comma.
8. Thou shalt not introduce obscure vocabulary into the text without a proper explanation.
9. Thou shalt pick a font and a colour and stick to it, not because thy copy editor cannot deal easily with this, but because it pisseth her off.

And this shall be the word of the copy editor.

Anyone got any more?
electricland: (insane iconfly)
everyone will be forced to use "disinterested" and "uninterested" correctly.

Likewise "comprised" and "composed".

I realize that I have high expectations, which is why I'm warning you now.

On the off chance that Queen of the World turns out to be a rotating post, what will your edicts be?


electricland: (Default)

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