Posted by: episystechpubs | August 2, 2013

Editor’s Corner: “Spell check yourself before you wreck yourself.”

While we always advise that people use a spellchecker before they submit documents to editing, there are certain errors that won’t be caught by the application. One benefit of having a human editor is that we (usually) catch these errors of context. For example, when you write a document about a field, the spellchecker won’t tag “filed” as incorrect because the spelling is just fine. But an editor will read “Use the drop-down box and select the Name filed” and change it to “field” so it makes sense in the context.

So, the lesson for today is use spellcheckers, but love and trust your editors. 🙂

Some of my mistakes found by colleagues and editors:

  • Parameter Manager written as Parameter Manger (where holy parameters go to give birth)
  • Cubicle written as cuticle (and cute instead of cube—an infraction committed just today)
  • Bill Payment Posting written as Billy Payment Posting (I’d never heard my editor laugh so hard)

Here are a few more things that spellcheckers (and autocorrectors) “helped” writers with. (Names and some details have been changed to protect the innocent, but the errors are all real.) Thanks to those who contributed to the list!

  • A kind person desired to give credit where it was due and mentioned that several of her slides were “curtsey of Bob.” I wonder if Bob curtsied as a courtesy to the presenter?
  • In preparing for the Symitar Educational Conference (SEC), several of our Instructional Designers live in fear of the C key’s neighbor, Mr. X. Don’t worry about slipping to the wrong key; I imagine the SEX conference will also be quite popular.
  • A fellow San Diegan was typing her return address on Sorrento Valley Road (and apparently wishing for Prince Charming) when she discovered she had inadvertently typed her return address as Sorrento Valley Toad.
  • The notes accompanying a new product included “Another item worth nothing…” though I think the intention was to note the item instead.
  • One co-worker tells me that sometimes she responds to comments and requests defiantly, rather than definitely.
  • The last slide in a presentation encouraged people to bring up additional discussion items. The intention was to call this slide Et cetera. Unfortunately, spellcheck decided it knew better and changed it to Excreta. Or maybe it wasn’t a spellcheck error and the presenter just didn’t hold the discussion topics in high regard. 🙂

And this is my favorite of all:

  • “I was texting someone to let her know that ‘I woke up with a migraine.’ Autocorrect changed it to ‘I woke up with a migrant.’”

Have a fantastic weekend!


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  1. Great post & you’re so right…just goes to show humans are still smarter than a computer – lol

  2. Great catchy title of your post btw – love it!

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