No one’s perfect, and we all make mistakes when we’re writing in a hurry. But I’m finding it hard to ignore the poor punctuation, spelling errors and grammatical slip-ups I find on social media these days. (I know I’m not the only one, and it probably says a lot about my personality/tolerance levels.)
Take Facebook, for example. (We parted ways for a few months, but now I’ve been sucked back in again.) I’m increasingly seeing friends using the platform to promote their fledgling businesses, and I think that’s great. But if the appearance of their business is so important to them, why are folks rushing to post updates without reading what they’ve written first?
Of course, sometimes the result is amusing. Have you ever read what people say about themselves in their personal profiles? “I like cooking cats, reading and the cinema.” (The exact wording has been modified to protect the offender’s identity!)
Other mistakes I see my friends make are liberally using (and misusing) apostrophes. (Did you know, there is a whole Pinterest page dedicated to this topic?!)
The gaffe that annoys me the most, however, is the misuse of “your” and “you’re”, as in “Your dinner” and “You’re dinner”. It’s simple when you think about it: one leaves you nourished, the other leaves you dead.
All these mistakes could be avoided, simply by using a second pair of eyes to proof their latest press release or status update. I don’t want to get a reputation as a grammar pedant, so I continue to scroll down my newsfeed and keep schtum.
Whatever business you are in, appearance is important and reputation is everything. So why undo your hard work with careless typing and grammar mistakes? (You might not think punctuation on Facebook or Twitter is that important, but try telling someone “I’m sorry, I love you” without the comma.)
Time spent proofreading is never time wasted. And as we know, accuracy really does matter.