Grammar vs. the Internet Fast-Track

I recently received an email notice from a reputable and well-known writing industry source. They have a magazine, annual contest and are sincerely one of the best sources and tools out there for writers at all levels. They have a long and well-respected history in the writing industry, and provide invaluable information. Some of you can probably guess of whom I speak, but I am not naming them due to a small rant that is about to ensue.

The subject line in the email said “Show us You Best Writing!”.  No folks, that is not my typo. Did they mean writing that was better than that title? Setting the bar kinda’ low arent’ they?

Ok,Ok, I do have to continually refer to my style guide and have, and no doubt will, continue to make grammatical errors. But for the love of all that is holy,  did no one notice that sentence before they sent it out to thousands upon thousands of subscribers? Fussy, finicky, critical, full-of-themselves writers no less? Some of them might even be educated. Hell – some probably even teach at the University level and would give your final compare/contrast essay a fail if that was the title. I’m being somewhat facetious, since obviously many of the subscribers would have a more than passable knowledge of grammar. (one likes to think…)

It wouldn’t be nearly as glaring an error if the source weren’t from a writing organization that is going to actually be judging WRITING. Which is why this really bothered me. I feel this is the unfortunate result of the insta-news and info glut that is streaming on the internet constantly. Fact corrections, fragmented sentences, misspellings, wrong photos of suspects and more abound every day on the internet from long-standing, top news organizations. What used to be an urgent deadline for the 11 o’clock news or to go to press by midnight, is now an ongoing, constant need to have fresh content, be in the face of your subscribers or followers, and the whole “LOOK HERE” mentality that having so much information and electronic gadgets proliferates. Whew. Was that a run-on sentence? Am I no longer supposed to use dashes between words? I don’t know! It’s all happening so fast!

But I’m pretty sure that “Show us You Best Writing”  is not…quite…right. And probably not their best writing.


2 comments on “Grammar vs. the Internet Fast-Track

  1. LMAO! I love it. All of it is so true. My brother used to have a blog called “Grammar Rant”. Basically, it was just the two of us (occasionally others who had the same pet peeve), ranting on about gross injustices done to the English language. It was fun. But, I agree with you. Much of our lack of good grammar stems from the electronic age coupled with a lack of value for our educational system. (Nevada ranks the lowest in the nation in education.)

    When I first got my cell with text ability, it was very difficult for me to text in short form. Yes, I know, I was an Administrative Assistant for many years and did take my own form on shorthand, but this was different. i now txt 2 just evry1 easily….lol… The difference between my texting and my son’s is that I had a good foundation in grammar (thanks LAB) and can write well. He, on the other hand, has had a handful of lousy English teachers. Kids now are virtually unable to write a paper in any form other than texting. I have a friend, who is a college professor, tell me that she received a research paper from a student in text form. She handed it back and told the student it was unacceptable and it needed to be redone.

    Unfortunately, this is happening more and more and it boils down to lack of attention to detail, lack of knowledge and, most unfortunately, a lack of interest.

    • That is unbelievable – text form?!??? Don’t even get me started on “these ones” and “those ones” – it makes me want to rip my hair out by the fistfuls.

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