Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


The Pedant or "English as she is Spoke" and correcting it

  1. #1


    Posts : 30
    Win 8.1

    The Pedant or "English as she is Spoke" and correcting it


    Firstly I am by Nature, upbringing and Education a Pedant.

    Simply put a Pedant means nothing more than "Teacher" and originally carried no connotations of OCD like behaviour on the part of anyone so labelled.

    It runs in the Family. My Brother (who resides in Cleveland, Ohio) is also a Pedant

    Latterly, however, the word has become perjorative and carries connotations of someone who is super critical and unforgiving of anyone who tramples on their dearly held beliefs.

    Forums are full of them. At least, the ones in the UK (which is where I currently live) certainly are.

    Threads are full of Posts which contain terribly rude comments to posters like :-

    "But then, why should I try to explain that to someone who can't even spell"
    "It's called an apostrophe, chum, try getting someone to read the definition to you"

    I think that correcting things like other posters' use of English grammar, punctuation, spelling etc. is rude and unnecessary UNLESS their phraseology was so tortured that it made their question or Post ambiguous. There are exceptions - using someone's own words to make a gerneral point (in a friendly way) or (and there is nothing more satisfying) correcting the English of someone who has posted and criticised someone else's English.

    Being a newbie to these Forums, is this common of US Forums as well as the UK ?

    Merlin

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  2. #2


    I am English, although living outside the UK. I do try and keep the language correct. But, a combination of fat fingers, bad , or no, typing skilss and a little old age thrown in, I do make mistakes. Often I write in haste, for no apparent reason, I do not heed the spelling corrector and so those mistakes are posted. In the years I have been posting, I have not been aware of any outstanding criticism of the grammar or spelling in my posts.
    I am not certain of how I would answer your last sentence? Forums are international. Often there is a rule, or guide line, suggesting that posts should be in the native language of the forum, the majority being in English, or, if you will American English.
    Because of the International nature of forums, users will find many variations, some quite colorful, of the English language. If the meaning is there, then normally the query is answered, without reference to the, possibly, poor phraseology or spelling.

    As a matter of personal interest, do you have any specific "English" forums in mind? After reading your post, I went through the forums to which I belong, to trace their native base, but failed to find any UK specific ones. (PCAdvisor I am aware of)
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  3. #3


    Posts : 30
    Win 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by davehc View Post
    I am English, although living outside the UK. I do try and keep the language correct. But, a combination of fat fingers, bad , or no, typing skilss and a little old age thrown in, I do make mistakes. Often I write in haste, for no apparent reason, I do not heed the spelling corrector and so those mistakes are posted. In the years I have been posting, I have not been aware of any outstanding criticism of the grammar or spelling in my posts.
    I am not certain of how I would answer your last sentence? Forums are international. Often there is a rule, or guide line, suggesting that posts should be in the native language of the forum, the majority being in English, or, if you will American English.
    Because of the International nature of forums, users will find many variations, some quite colorful, of the English language. If the meaning is there, then normally the query is answered, without reference to the, possibly, poor phraseology or spelling.

    As a matter of personal interest, do you have any specific "English" forums in mind? After reading your post, I went through the forums to which I belong, to trace their native base, but failed to find any UK specific ones. (PCAdvisor I am aware of)

    The ebay forums are a particular example. The demise of the old "q&a" board winnowed out some of the worst of the offenders, but newbies often need thick skins when starting a thread.

    Apart from the "Englsh as she is spoke" issue there also are people who don't recognise the difference between a misspelling of a word (Cheif - Chief, exampel - example) and simple Typos. I also suffer from "fat finger" syndrome and, if I fail to proofread my own Posts, end iup with manyu words where my fingwers have hit twpo keys instead of pone.

    Again, where these errors don't affect the meaning of the Post I see nothing to be gained by ridiculing their authors apart, of course, from giving the writer a sense of superiority.

    We shall speak on this later. I think I need to go to bed now (08.00 am).
    I suffer from Narcolepsy which gives me long periods of insomnia so I am often heading to bed when others are just heading to work.

    G'night

    Merlin
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  4. #4


    UK
    Posts : 283
    Windows 8.1


    Usually if something is readable then no problem

    It is very easy to mistype words, so spelling mistakes can easily be made

    One thing I do find annoying (not sure if this happens much on non UK sites) is the constant misuse of words

    eg, I brought a new computer at the weekend

    I never mention it when I see it, but brought and bought are mixed up far too often
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  5. #5


    Posts : 1,875
    Windows 10 Pro Prieview x64


    Quote Originally Posted by merlin1949 View Post
    Firstly I am by Nature, upbringing and Education a Pedant.
    a pedant isn't a proper noun and should not be capitalised. You asked for that
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  6. #6


    Posts : 30
    Win 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by adamf View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by merlin1949 View Post
    Firstly I am by Nature, upbringing and Education a Pedant.
    a pedant isn't a proper noun and should not be capitalised. You asked for that
    (you could also have included Nature and Education on the same basis - LOL.)

    I know - I knock them back to lower case when I spot them, but they sort of creep up on me.

    It's only since I've been posting on Forums that it's been happening, this (mis) use of Capital Letters on what my subconscious mind perceives to be Important Words (Four examples right there).

    I am told that it's because one is 'speaking' into a vacuum. These words are important to the thread of the conversation but not so important as to justify capitalisation of the WHOLE word. So it's very difficult in a post, which, unlike a face to face conversation is a sort of static dialogue, to show this. We do it in speech by unconsciously leaving a slightly longer pause before and after the significant word than we do with other, less important words. That isn't possible in Posts, obviously, but the subconscious requirement to do it is still there and often manifests itself with these random and seemingly unnecessary Caps.

    That's my excuse, anyway.

    Merlin
    Last edited by merlin1949; 24 Sep 2014 at 06:48. Reason: added first line
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  7. #7


    Posts : 446
    Win 8 64-bit


    I guess the language you and I are using today it a shortened and changed version of what our ancestors would have used, so we're as guilty as any for not writing 'proper English'. Language is ever changing.

    I do find it annoying when people deliberately use text speak in order to act 'kewl', when all it does is make it a lot harder to read. A whole sentence in text speak when they're using a proper keyboard, such as "In da bginnin God cre8d da hvns & da earth" will usually result in me hitting the back button pretty quickly. There are however legitimate reasons for using text speak, such as 'lol', or a smiley, and that is to convey context. "You idiot, lol" for example shows that you're joking and not being serious. The same with smiling or angry face 'smileys'.

    However, it's equally annoying when people find the need correct other peoples spelling, punctuation, etc. on an internet forum in order to 'get one up on them' or use it as a way of projecting some sort of superiority over them. Life’s too short for all of that nonsense and after all it's main purpose is really just a means of communicating. So I'll usually respond to those people with something along the lines of "Thanks for letting me no about my poor spelling and gramma, if it wasnt four you i would of not known. ill take it on board."

    As Steven Fry demonstrates, it's possible to be a lover of language without having a superiority complex over others and feeling the need to go around correcting everyone all the time.

    Stephen Fry Kinetic Typography - Language - YouTube
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  8. #8


    Posts : 30
    Win 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by paulsalter View Post
    Usually if something is readable then no problem

    It is very easy to mistype words, so spelling mistakes can easily be made

    One thing I do find annoying (not sure if this happens much on non UK sites) is the constant misuse of words

    eg, I brought a new computer at the weekend

    I never mention it when I see it, but brought and bought are mixed up far too often

    I agree, and I think it goes back to my point about bad spelling vs. Typos, I think, Paul.

    The bad spelling always puts my teeth on edge and, where it's egregiously bad it detracts from whatever points the poster is trying to put across. It's like a subset of Marshall McLuhan's "The medium is the message". Where spelling and grammar are THAT bad they become so obtrusive that any ordinary person would just end up fixated on the "medium" or the words themselves and miss completely the message that the writer is trying to put across.

    Merlin
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    Posts : 231
    Windows 8.1 x64


    Grate thred Merlin
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  10. #10


    Posts : 30
    Win 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by ARC1020 View Post
    I guess the language you and I are using today it a shortened and changed version of what our ancestors would have used, so we're as guilty as any for not writing 'proper English'. Language is ever changing.

    I do find it annoying when people deliberately use text speak in order to act 'kewl', when all it does it make it a lot harder to read. A whole sentence in text speak when they're using a proper keyboard, such as "In da bginnin God cre8d da hvns & da earth" will usually result in me hitting the back button pretty quickly.

    However, it's equally annoying when people find the need correct other peoples spelling, punctuation, etc. on an internet forum in order to 'get one up on them' or use it as a way of projecting some sort of superiority over them. Life’s too short for all of that nonsense and after all it's main purpose is really just a means of communicating. So I'll usually respond with something along the lines of "Thanks for letting me no about my poor spelling and gramma, if it wasnt four you i would of not known. ill take it on board."

    As Steven Fry demonstrates, it's possible to be a lover of language without having a superiority complex over others and feeling the need to go around correcting everyone all the time.

    Stephen Fry Kinetic Typography - Language - YouTube
    Completely agree - but I feel it's even WORSE than that !!

    While walking into town last week, there were two guys in front of me having a loud conversation about some colleagues of theirs. One of them said to the other :-

    "So now, of course, he thinks that he is next in line for the Area Manager's job"

    to which his friend replied :-

    "HIM, AREA MANAGER , LOL LOL and Double LOL"

    So netspeak is even invading and replacing our normal reactions to things. We no longer need to laugh, just say the 'word' LOL.

    Why stop there - Instead of smiling, we could just say "happyface". Instead of getting angry, just say the word "angryface".

    Within three or four generations, our kidneys would have stopped producing adrenaline completely and all the muscles in our face not associated with speech itself would have atrophied completely.

    Merlin
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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