Proofreading in journalism

I’ve heard a lot of people (including Eric Schmidt) blasting bloggers in favor of real journalism. I have to say I disagree. Sure, there are garbage blogs out there, but a lot of the highest quality reading material I see out there—and yes, in fact, journalism, too—is in blogs. I’ve seen some terrible reporting in legitimate news outlets:
Tech “journalism” strikes again: of course Apple will recommend antivirus eventually
Tech “journalism” hits new low at PC World
Bad Journalism

Well, here is The San Francisco Chronicle, apparently with its copy editor on vacation:

Click for larger image
I’ve underlined the grammar and spelling errors. Atrocious. And, yeah, if you’re quoting someone who has made a grammatical error, you use [sic] so we know the person you quoted messed up and that you didn’t mess up.


  1. Next big thing: Major media will start publishing in ‘TXT-speak’ in an attempt to draw eyeballs from the younger market… who would ostensibly be reading it on their phones.

    Perhaps the above is just practice. Or the new PDA Content Editor was filling in for the copy editor that day…

    “Grmr & sp err? Wassat? LOL!”

  2. I can see it happening… don’t laugh, Ted!

    By the way, it appears to be fed from another publication. The original publication fixed some of the errors, but the Chronicle still has the errors int he re-publication.

  3. That’s just it! I’m not laughing…

    What’s coming after that: Journalism will be reduced to publishing everything in the form of cartoons & videos — i.e., no more ‘clumsy’ textual content to deal with.

    YouTube will eventually be regarded as the ‘best & most reputable’ source for cutting-edge journalism…

    Reading will be frowned upon (For Official Use Only), and Guy Montag will be at your door to cheerfully assist you in ‘disposing’ of any printed volumes that may be cluttering up your home (or your thoughts)…

  4. Today alone, I’ve seen people write “web designer’s” for a plural, the classic “definately” and “san-serif fonts”.

    All industry people, all talented and respected. But if they are this careless when publishing their content, I seriously doubt if they have the eye for detail that’s needed when you push something out on a professional basis (a site, an article, a print job)…

    It irks me and I thank you for sharing my pet peeve.

  5. Who’d have thought that something as innocuous as “the telephone” would end up leading the charge for our society to slowly sink into the depths of grammatical illiteracy…

    Maybe it’s a computer virus — that’s contagious to humans. It affects the brain and causes you to become careless about your communications and lose sight of detail.

    Must.. get.. eye-candy.. fix.. Need.. Flash…

    “Code 9: Patient needs immediate cellular respiration. Switch to wi-fi and begin animation download, stat!”

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