Thoughts on South African and international politics and culture

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Journalistic spelling
This is a pet hate of mine, so indulge me for a minute. I cannot understand how many spelling errors are creeping into South African journalism, both online and in print. How hard can it be to (a) proofread a simple headline or 250-word story and (b) use one of a plethora of free spell-checking tools to check 250 words of copy before it goes to print? It simply escapes me. In the Independent on Sunday, a sub-headline of about 10 words used the spelling "hingis" for the word "hinges". That is simply inexplicable. Then there are the avalanche of examples of simple grammatical errors like the spelling "loose" when meaning "lose", and the straw that broke this camel's back today "less than half and hour", seen in a headline story on News24.

Surely to be an English journalist, one must require some basic schooling in the English language?