katiefoolery: (Fear not the semi-colon)
[personal profile] katiefoolery
I want to rant about this article. I want to rant about it so hard and I want to use bad grammar while I do so in the hopes that I'll make some sort of ironic point.



So much wrong in so little time. So much that I was arguing with the screen as I read the article this morning. The author of the article states that she actually loves grammar; she's a fan of grammar; grammar makes her all kinds of happy. And yet, I'd happily stab her with an exclamation mark, should I ever happen across her in the street.

Let's start with this:
Most grammar rules don’t matter, though. That is, if you get them wrong, the reader still can find the meaning. For example, few people know when to use effect and when to use affect. But it doesn’t matter because the first is a noun and the second is a verb so the likelihood you'll mistake the meaning of a sentence because of a grammar error in this case is extremely low.

That's my bolding in there. Because I just love bold font. Or maybe to highlight a basic error before we go on to the substance of the paragraph. (Because you know you want to. You want to hear me ranting about grammar so damn bad, right? :P)

"...the first is a noun and the second is a verb" - actually, the first is a verb, too. Yes, most people confuse affect and effect. I used the wrong one by accident the other day. While messaging. And corrected myself a few lines down. But seriously, I was talking to my writer at the time and I didn't want to give the impression that their beta couldn't tell the different between effect and affect.

Let's see them in use:
He effected an air of jollity, although she wasn't deceived for a second. The effect reminded her somewhat of a puppy that was bravely attempting to pretend its favourite ball hadn't been stolen; it was impossible not to be affected by that.

Three different effect/affects, all used in different senses. Very easy to confuse. (So easy to confuse that I actually wrote "affect" instead of "effect" the first time around...) You could argue that it would still make sense if I'd used "affect" the whole way through. Then again, you could also argue that "ur" is a valid spelling of "your".

I WOULD NOT AGREE WITH YOU, should you try. Fair warning. We could still be friends, but your texts would probably make me wince whenever I read them.

If there's one thing I've learnt about bad grammar, it's this: You can read your own bad grammar, but you cannot read that of another. We're several centuries too young to remember when spelling and sentence structure was an optional, person-by-person concept... but it can't have been any fun at all. And it raises a question: why is it we're allowed to advance in technology, yet we're encouraged by some people to go backwards when it comes to communication?

Around half-way through, I experienced a small paroxysm as a result of the following statement:
We should judge people by their ideas, their creativity, their enthusiasm. None of this naturally comes at the heels of good grammar.

Oh. Oh. Oh.

This, my friends, is the one statement GUARANTEED TO DRIVE ME CRAZY. How, for the love of lamingtons, are people to express said ideas, creativity and enthusiasm if they don't have the tools that will allow them to do so? So you have ideas and creativity to hand... fantastic. What a shame you can't express them, due to your inability to spell or use words in a coherent, easily-understandable sense. Why are we constantly being told we don't have to use our brains? That we don't have to spell properly or understand how our own language works? I can only see one advantage to keeping the general populace in a state of ignorance, so let's just prepare ourselves for our new overlords right now, shall we?

And apparently, those overlords are going to be Google. Please see the following quote:
Anyway, if Google is deciding that these rules are no longer useful guidelines, then we can all follow suit.

Admittedly, at this point, I started wondering if the whole article had been an experiment in irony that had gone horribly wrong. Seriously. Who on earth is going to use Google as the standard by which all things are judged? Google.

I ask you.

We use this langauge of ours every day. Surely it's not asking too much to have a little care and love for it.

on 2009-05-21 04:28 pm (UTC)
Posted by [personal profile] chasy
i have a very odd relationship with the english language. in some ways, i love to cherish it. in others, i love to bend it and twist it and see how many different ways i can distort it.

the thing that worries me is, all the time i've spent distorting and bending has hampered my ability to use it correctly consistently.

i recently got Eats, Shoots and Leaves at a yard sale and i'm hoping it will help me regain some of the knowledge i once had (and implemented) about the english language...

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