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Thread: Most annoying grammatical error

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    Queen of the Forum Array KristineS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Business Attorney View Post
    Weird Al Yankovic just released a video for the song “Word Crimes” from his upcoming Mandatory Fun album. It's great fun for those of us who shudder when we spot word crimes:

    "Weird Al" Yankovic - Word Crimes - YouTube
    Too funny. I was just going to post this myself. Love this video!

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    Ok, a question for you grammer experts. As in Davids example above, he used “Word Crimes” with a double quote. I believe this is the proper way to do this. However, more and more I see single quotes used in the same context. When is it proper to use single quotes if at all?

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    Quote Originally Posted by billbenson View Post
    Ok, a question for you grammer experts. As in Davids example above, he used “Word Crimes” with a double quote. I believe this is the proper way to do this. However, more and more I see single quotes used in the same context. When is it proper to use single quotes if at all?
    That is an interesting question. In the way I used the double quotes (the title of a song or video), the only correct answer is to use double quotes.

    If, on the other hand, I had stated that I consider certain grammatical mistakes to be "word crimes," then the correct use depends on whether you are writing in American English or British English. When you set off a word or phrase for irony or emphasis in American English, double quotes are the standard. In British English, the standard would be single quotes.

    Here is an interesting summary: Single Quotation Marks and Their Uses | The Editor's Blog

    The key point in using double or single quotes is that (1) the quotes must always be matched, whichever you choose, and (2) you should be consistent within your writing.

    I personally use double quotes when setting off a word or phrase within a sentence, but I see nothing wrong with someone using single quotes for the same purpose, as long as they do it consistently.

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    This also leads to another question. When I was in English or typing class in high school, you needed to have two spaces between sentences. Html only allows for one space unless you manually add the code for non breaking space to the page. This means that on a web site, you are pretty much being forced to break age old grammar rules. This doesn't stop here. I believe that many grammar rules are being broken on the internet for the sake of readability, getting important text on a certain line. A double space between sentences could be the best example of this.

    Grammar is not my field of expertise. I'm just throwing this out as an apparent contradiction for discussion.

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    A lot of people are debating the two spaces after a period rule. I've seen discussion about it for the reasons you mentioned, Bill. I was taught that two spaces was the correct way, but I now finding myself breaking that rule quite regularly. Grammar is like everything else, rules will change over time.

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    I read somewhere that the two-period rule was based on the fact that on typewriters, every character was the same size and it was visually more difficult to see the end of a sentence. With proportional spacing, the period is right up against the last letter of the sentence. The argument is that the rule was created for a specific reason and we should not slavishly continue to follow the rule when the reason for it has passed.

    True or not, that seems to make sense.

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    Web Consultant Array Harold Mansfield's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VanCity View Post
    I've never even heard of the two spaces after a period rule before. Where do they come up with these?
    Probably because you're too young to have been around before computers. 2 spaces used to be the correct rule. Typewriters didn't automatically add a space after a period.You could literally run your sentences together with no space.
    Last edited by Harold Mansfield; 08-06-2014 at 10:49 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by billbenson View Post
    Html only allows for one space unless you manually add the code for non breaking space to the page. This means that on a web site, you are pretty much being forced to break age old grammar rules.
    There are ways to format text in HTML. If you want to double space your lines, you can do that as below ...
    p
    {
    line-height: 2 em;
    }

    Now, all lines in paragraphs will be double spaced. You can do this using CSS too and set all paragraphs to be double spaced. Add this rule to your CSS file: p {line-height: 2em;}

    You can have two spaces after a period by adding '&nbsp' (without the quotes). Each occurance of '&nbsp' will add a space. There are ways to achieve this in CSS too but I don't want to bore you all.

    I've enjoyed reading this thread even though I've got through only half of it as yet. I certainly make many mistakes even though I try not to. I'm also dyslexic so that does not help much.

    One of my pet peeves is when people use the word "which" as a conjunction. As an example: My brother went to China for a visit, which, I wanted to go to China last year but ..." This is what comes to mind as an example at the moment. Probably not the best one but hopefully you get the picture.

    Another pet peeve is when people say "it's a mute point" instead of "it's a moot point". That jars my ears.

    Edit: Oh! I forgot the most egregious one (IMO). I can't stand it when, in corporate meetings, people say, "I'll socialize this information with my team." One can't "socialize" information. What's wrong with "convey" or "disseminate" or some such word?
    Last edited by ActionMan; 08-07-2014 at 12:56 AM.

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    I can't be asked
    Your a looser
    Your an idiot
    They're car

    All examples of my pet hates, especially number 1, really grinds my gears

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    The whole you're/your thing gets me, especially when people are criticizing someone else and using poor grammar to do it.

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