Yet Another Case Question

Peter Hansen peter at
Mon Feb 24 04:44:10 CET 2003

Steve Holden wrote:
> Frankly I'm so tired of seeing ignoramuses using apostrophes to indacte the
> plural rather than the possessive, and "its" used where "it's" is
> appropriate (and vice versa) that I begin to feel that some discipline is
> not a bad thing ... as long as it actually HURTS!

I think you got up on the wrong side of bed, Steve.  I've been guilty of 
these errors myself in the last couple of weeks... little glitches that 
slipped through my usually careful proofreading.  Although I certainly 
agree that any *ignoramuses* who do this ought to be tarred, feathered,
shot, and stuffed, sometimes it does happen as a result of lack of sleep,
inattention, or a kind of momentary confusion where one's brain 
manages to see something that is certainly wrong but appears right
at the time no matter how many times one looks at it.  

In those latter cases, I appeal for tolerance and a punishment somewhat 
less severe than I meted out above.  Otherwise we'll have to round
up all those who spell "indicate" as "indacte", "certainty" as "certainlty",
or who substitute "it" for "is" at unfortunate moments and shoot them 
as well. ;-)

-or-at-least-make-them-code-in-perl-ly y'rs -Peter

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