OK, Bridie Jabour’s Guardian rant isn’t really anything I haven’t said and quoted many times before, but a good anti-peever rant is always worth seeing, and I like the in-your-face nature of this one and the emphasis in the conclusion on an important point that is sometimes not attended to:
That aside, there is a need for us to be literate, of course. Which brings me to what may be the most devastating revelation for the enthusiastic corrector: WE KNOW. Most of the time, serial manglers of the English language know the difference between “complimentary” and “complementary”.
Eight times out of 10, it will just be a simple typo made as we’re tweeting while ordering food, dodging traffic or pretending to work. But the glee with which typos, outside of news articles, is jumped on is tedious. Affectively, you’re just saying you are more educated than the person writing or speaking. Or you think you are. But just as Tony Abbott certainly knows what Canada is called, and Tanya Plibersek is clear that Africa is a continent, a slip on the keyboard is not a good reason for you to type your most patronising “*”.
Also: “The first person to spot all 10 errors and/or misuses of the English language gets a prize,” so act now — supplies are doubtless limited. (Thanks, Bathrobe!)