Dear Digital Grammar Nazis:
Hi. How are you doing? In the first place, I’d like to
make it known say that I understand where you are you’re coming from, because I used to be one of you. Almost every read on the internet provided an opportunity for me Once upon a time, when I read articles on the internet, I selfishly used the writing of strangers as a way to put my grammar and spelling critiquing skills to use. After all, I thought, if people are going to write online, I would insist that they should do so in a way that is error-free. Especially on blogs, pop culture sites, and social media, I thought the writer could benefit from my feedback. It was hard to take people seriously who obviously did not take the time to read over their writings to perfection.
began started to write and edit online. My attitude towards writing and editing was given Doing this gave me some much–needed perspective. In my own writing After a while, I began to realize d how incredibly imperfect my own grammar and spelling was, because No no matter how many times I edited a piece, I would always ended up missing something. It was then at this point that I realized started to see the value of an extra set of eyes. Unfortunately, when When you write your own pieces for a site or blog, unfortunately that having another pair of eyes is not a privilege that you always get. This experience was useful when I edited others’ work and rather than getting frustrated by what I would have previously deemed as careless writing, Through my own experience, I gained compassion for the difficulties that freelance writers can face; the lack of support, the lack of traditional editing styles and systems that a generation of newspapermen depended on. Well, it’s a brave new world out there for us, guys. And wisdom comes to us all in the end, I guess. because I knew the realized that extra set of eyes that were mine would make a difference to their work.
Still, if someone is going to call themselves
a person is going to say he or she is a “writer,” then they really ought to should be cautious; should dot every “I” and cross every “T.” more careful. Why? Because Poor poor grammar and spelling can affect an otherwise decent or really great piece.
But during During one of my premiere first grad uate school classes last fall, when one student had remarked that people who don’t know the difference between , “there” and “their” are stupid ,. At this point, I had another change in perspective. To the surprise of most of the class, the our professor disagreed with the student. She said something like ,: “If you understand the message someone is trying to convey, and it is a decent or good or beautiful message, will you really let a misspelled or incorrect word get in the way? If you know what someone meant to write or say, will you let the miniscule minuscule get in the way of the great? If you do, you might be the stupid one.”
It was a humbling message for all of us
as we sat there and wondered what this meant for our own academic life. Of course, my our professor did not didn’t mean that she would all of a suddenly cease to care stop caring about our grammar and spelling; she was saying that if the content quality is present, and if the message is clear and concise, and if you can understand and appreciate someone’s work (even with errors), a re those errors not insignificant enough that you don’t need to let them get in the way of your enjoyment of their work? then please — don’t let those minor errors keep you from your larger enjoyment of a piece of writing.
Lastly, Grammar Nazis, I’d like you to know that I
, like most writers do appreciates appreciate it when you point things out ,; I really do. But occasionally often, I wonder: Aren’t you missing the importance of the pieces you read because of your longing to point out the insignificant imperfections? out on the significance of what you read, just based on your tiny obsession with minor grammatical errors? And, hey, don’t get me wrong, Grammar Nazis – we need you ,; we need you because you keep us seeking you help us seek perfection in our own work. But for your own sake, when you read something, notice the withering tree by all means , — but not at the expense of missing out on the entire forest.
A Former Digital Grammar Nazi
I’m sorry I apologize for any grammar or spelling mistakes that I made in this piece. Focus on the forest, guys ,; focus on the forest.