Monday, February 15, 2010

Grammar, punctuation, spelling - how important?

How important is correct use of grammar, punctuation and spelling?

Is it important that correct forms of grammar, etc., be used in speech, in written communications, in advertising, in newspaper articles and advertising?

Today's Chicago Tribune carries an article and a photograph,0,4740280.story about red-light camera protesters. Two protesters carried commercially-printed banners on which the word "existence" was spelled as "existance".

How about the sentence that starts with "Him and I went ..."? Know where kids learn this? In school!

Or how about this quote? "There's been some tough decisions that have been made."

If I were hiring an applicant for a position and he used poor grammar during an interview, I'd decide, "Next!"

When I was with a chamber of commerce in the Kansas City area, the high school graduate who wrote the chamber's newsletter for 1,100 members always used the incorrect form of "its" and "it's" in her articles. One day I asked her about it, and she replied, "I always mix them up."

My politically-incorrect comment was, "After you have written the article, why don't you go back and change each one?" Boy! Did she ever feel insulted? She complained to her boss, who complained to my boss, who complained to me. Did it get corrected? (No.)

What emphasis is there in schools today for correct forms of communication? Is it required only of students?

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