Gransnet forums


I really do worry about this

(55 Posts)
Anne58 Mon 21-Jul-14 21:48:00

Evening all.

My dear DIL can barely spell, not that she ever writes to me, we always chat on the phone, but looking at some of her posts on Facebook make me despair!

I think she is far from alone, I have just had this notification from Freecycle:

OFFER: Chess of draws

I have a small chess of draws they are home made but in good condision

I do appreciate that the person posting this might have English as a second language, but it seems that spelling difficulty is everywhere!

sunseeker Mon 21-Jul-14 22:10:10

It's not just in UK that spelling is poor, I keep in touch with my younger relatives in Australia via Facebook and sometimes I have problems working out what they are trying to say because the spelling is so bad - and I don't mean text speak which I can usually work out!

grannyactivist Mon 21-Jul-14 22:17:46

I've just been on the local school website and noticed that one of the governors, who is also a teacher, wrote 'formally' for 'formerly'. What would once have been described as a 'schoolgirl error'. hmm

ninathenana Mon 21-Jul-14 22:22:51

DD posted a comment on FB pointing out the errors in a letter posted by our local MP grin

GillT57 Mon 21-Jul-14 22:47:03

I gave up looking at reviews on Trip Adviser at the weekend (looking for a hol)because most of the postings were illiterate, unpunctuated ramblings, the only way I could understand them was read them aloud. We all make the odd spelling mistake, but these were truly dreadful and consisted of line after line of words, no punctuation, no capital letters. I am not talking about semi colons and such 'fancy stuff' just full stops.I too have seen 'Chests of draws' for sale, would go nicely in the 'dinning area' of houses in a 'sort after area'

annodomini Mon 21-Jul-14 23:00:21

What about a 'chester draws'?

thatbags Mon 21-Jul-14 23:04:23

My dad always called one of those a 'chester'. He said that as a child he thought they were called Chester drawers. Brussels sprouts. Nottingham lace. London gin. Chester drawers. Sobvious innit.

Penstemmon Mon 21-Jul-14 23:10:28

A local online community board has me twitching with all the misuse of there, their, they're and the mystery 'theyr' Also 'off of' instead of From 'praps' not perhaps, wonted /wanted Oh the list is long!!

GillT57 Mon 21-Jul-14 23:26:41

oh yes penstemmon in the reviews I was reading there was a complete mishmash and mix of they're/their/there and a lot of 'should of' as in 'the manager should of given us free drinks lol'

Lilygran Mon 21-Jul-14 23:47:31

But then again, my ipad has just changed 'post mortem' to 'post Mortimer'. Makes no sense at all. And I didn't notice.

Purpledaffodil Tue 22-Jul-14 07:51:38

I agree re the poor standard of spelling everywhere. I spent much of my teaching career implementing ever changing spelling policies and schemes. Fat Sam anybody? Apparently it was all wasted. My personal pet theory is that many people do not read for pleasure any more. Apart from children with specific problems, I never taught an avid reader who wasn't also a good speller. Again this is purely a personal view but I suspect it is seeing words in context which imprints them, rather than learning spelling lists.

Aka Tue 22-Jul-14 08:25:46

I wonder if it's always been the case that a large percentage of the population couldn't spell, but you tended not to see their inadequacies? Now, whether through ignorance or 'whatever', it's almost become fashionable acceptable to post rubbish.

My fingers twitch to correct them but I (just about) manage to restrain myself.

FlicketyB Tue 22-Jul-14 08:49:33

I was at a funeral yesterday and couldn't keep my eye off the line which described a reading as from St Paul to the Colossons. then realised they meant the Colossians, but in the distress of an unexpected death my proof-reading skills would desert me as well.

Stansgran Tue 22-Jul-14 09:09:02

I lurk on the other place on dull days but can't get past a badly written first post however interesting the subject may be. I am accused of not punctuating in emails to my family. There is an ocean of commas and full stops out there waiting for me to use.

hildajenniJ Tue 22-Jul-14 09:15:10

I tend to agree with purpledaffodil about avid readers being good at spelling. I really have to stop myself correcting errors on the notice board at work, particularly the inappropriate use of the apostrope. Do children in primary school learn punctuation these days? confused

hildajenniJ Tue 22-Jul-14 09:18:03

Sorry, apostrophe blush

HollyDaze Tue 22-Jul-14 09:23:45

Sorry, apostrophe blush

So easily done isn't it grin

We all have blips, we all have gaps in our knowledge, we can all slip up and place the wrong word in a sentence - funny how the tolerant that berate those who aren't can become intolerant and judgemental themselves wink

Anne58 Tue 22-Jul-14 09:24:35

At my GP's practice there is a large box for people to donate "Stamp's" to help raise funds. Bad enough that they have to fund raise, but the apostrophe adds insult to injury.

hildajenniJ Tue 22-Jul-14 09:42:32

The tablet is to blame for the lack of the h HollyDaze I am at fault for not proof reading before posting. I need a new one. I keep having to do a factory re-set for this one to work properly. It's very frustrating having to remember my passwords etc., every time I need to restore my info.

Nonnie Tue 22-Jul-14 09:45:56

Oh I thing Freegle is hilarious! Not just for the spelling but sometimes rudeness. I never give anything to a rude person but do if they can't spell.

My particular hate is businesses which can't use an apostrophe, especially the large supermarkets and local councils. We have three signs for our road and only one of them uses the apostrophe which should be there.

On the other hand my Kindle uses some very strange words and I have dyslexic fingers too! grin

annodomini Tue 22-Jul-14 09:47:31

My granddaughter's primary school was very hot on punctuation and, in fact, was featured in a Radio 4 programme on the subject. She still can't spell without the help of spell check but has the excuse of proven dyslexia. I think the younger GCs' school also works on punctuation, judging by their occasional communications.

Purpledaffodil Tue 22-Jul-14 09:47:56

Thanks HildajenniJ. Glad it's not just me! And yes they do learn about punctuation in great detail. In fact I do not remember learning the use of the colon until I was in secondary school. The Literacy strategy was introduced years ago and is full of grammar and punctuation. The daily Literacy lesson is with us still. Hours of planning have gone into teaching the stuff. The current generation of under 30s have had the full force of this. Why this results in so much bad English, I have no idea. Perhaps as Aka says we see it more because of social media? Or perhaps like long division of decimals, correct English has been relegated to being something you learn at school and forget instantly. confused

HollyDaze Tue 22-Jul-14 09:53:18

At one parent's evening, when my daughter was about 14 (this would have been about 1990), I asked my daughter's English teacher why he had given her an A for an assignment when it was littered with spelling errors and bad punctuation. He said it was the content that mattered and not the spelling confused - I told him I would advise her to retell that comment when future employers commented on her bad spelling/punctuation.

Mamie Tue 22-Jul-14 10:27:43

I second everything PurpleDaffodil says about the enormous amount of time now devoted to teaching grammar and spelling in schools. Have a go at the spelling and grammar test for eleven-year-olds if you can get hold of it. It is hard.
I think part of the problem for adults is that writing is not just about learning a lot of rules. We learn to write by writing, by getting it wrong and learning to do it better. We need to practise.
Today's world is much more oral / aural / visual. We get far more of our information from sources that rely on multiple media. Writing is not by default our first means of communication at a distance. This all has an impact on the importance given to writing.
I am not sure what you can do to change it really, but I do think that when you have a job or other circumstances that demand accurate, precise, polished writing then you can learn to do it, no matter what your age.

GillT57 Tue 22-Jul-14 11:29:05

I agree with Purple, both of my children, aged 17 and 20, had punctuation, spelling etc taught to them, both of them are very articulate writers, my daughter writes novels for fun and my son churns out some terrific history essays according to his tutors. They both read avidly as children, were read every night as well. I think this is part of the problem, but I dont think that these sloppy irritating posts online are due to lack of teaching of rules of punctuation and spelling, it is almost a fashion, trendy thing to do. Some people write as they speak, in a breathless stream of words punctuated by lots of silly LOLs and likes. Sadly, what may be entertaining to their friends and totally understandable when spoken, comes across as illiterate drivel when written. I am not talking here about people with difficulties or dyslexia, just lazy sloppy people. I have to acknowledge what amounts to almost a prejudice; I dismiss anything written on a forum that I can't understand the first time I read it! Gosh, I sound like a right old fart moaner blush