Date: September 26, 2004 12:19
To: Buzzine Magazine
Subject: Horrible grammar!
Message: I just paid a visit to your Website and watched an ad for the Buzzine Photo Galleries. The copy in the banner read, "Amazing exclusive photo’s from movie set’s and more. Check them out in the Buzzine Galleries!"
Maybe English is your second language, or you’re a team of homeless people working out of box in an alley, or perhaps you’re talented journalists trying to do your best to keep fans informed, but can only afford a cheap word processor that doesn’t have a grammar checker. I’m personally leaning toward thinking you employ a monkey to bang on keys in the hope that your target audience will understand a portion of what spills forth.
To be clear, your banner ad should read, "Amazing exclusive photos from movie sets and more. Check them out in the Buzzine Galleries!" A quick pass by a qualified proofreader or even grammar check in Microsoft Word would let you know that none of the words in that ad require an apostrophe. Apostrophes are used to note possession, contractions, or omitted letters in a word.
Now, I’m sure that your monkey works cheaply, but I would suggest, since you do publish a "professional" webzine, that you invest in either a proofreader or a better word processor. In the long run, you’ll find it a wise investment. At the very least, it will prevent random emails from nitpicky assholes like myself.
English is my first, and only language.
And, we’re not a bunch of kids (I’m 41, and CEO).
We are journalists.
We do need another proofreader.
Everyone I hire speaks English as their native tongue.
I have some overzealous staff members who post before proofing (myself
included). I applaud your honest critique, pithy wit and honesty. Thanks,
and we’ll do our best to keep it on tract.
Now, the question: Should I email him back and ask him whether or not he thinks that hitting RETURN after every sentence fools me into thinking he knows how to punctuate and structure a sentence? Or if he knows the difference between the words "tract" and "track," especially when one is better suited to his meaning than the other? Is this a lost cause?
Notice the date I sent the original message… and the date he responded… nothing like showing your readership how seriously you take their concerns.