Typos In the Press

swbtherantfilesI have to thank on of my readers for alerting my to typos in my review of Art All Night.  I actually have to thank him more for giving me a subject to rant about this morning.

Now, typos in blogs (unless it’s really extreme) I tend to blow off, simply because when I read a blog, I don’t want it to seem perfect and sanitary.  If I wanted that I’d read a newspaper … well, OK, maybe I would have read a newspaper a few years ago.  These days the press just isn’t the same.  When I used to read an article in a paper like The Pittsburgh Press (yes, I’m showing my age), no matter the writer or subject, you could tell the lengths they went through to “get it right” before going to press.  Things changed after  while, and content in newspapers went from award winning journalism to content based on gaining readership.  Today, with most papers online, it has more to do with how fast it can get to your screen or iPhone.

Thus, the typo is more prevalent than ever.  A few weeks ago when I caught five typos on simple words in an article I decided to go through a few of my articles.  I discovered that on average ten of my article had less typos than ten of the articles found in a major online newspaper.  Now, considering I only give my articles a quick once-over, I thought the fact that I did better on typos (I write mostly on a netbook, so consider that too) than a major paper where the journalists actually get paid was fairly sad.  Granted, you have technical issues with electronic publishing when you have hundreds of people editing and publishing at the same time.  The system can “burp” and not use the article you thought it did, etc.  That doesn’t excuse that you can now find more typos and grammatical errors (some of mine are done for effect … major newspapers usually don’t use that technique) in daily articles appearing in online and sometimes print publications.  I’m assuming journalism schools are now skipping spelling and keyboarding and have switched over to teaching texting and thumbing.
-SWB

PS – Paul, thanks for giving me the rant article idea for this morning … you deserve some credit for the contribution.  BTW … contrary to popular belief, I’m not picking on Paul, but actually thanking him. I think I left some typos in this article just so I can look as good a the paid writers 🙂

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  1. April 28, 2009 at 12:12 pm

    As a professional proofreader, I share your concerns. What I hate is when the typo is not a mere annoyance, but makes you wonder if you’re understanding what the writer meant to say

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