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Pedants' corner

The humble apostrophe

8 replies

sleepychunky · 04/06/2008 10:07

Three cheers for BBC Breakfast this morning and a whole item devoted to the apostrophe, including an interview with Raef from "The Apprentice" discussing the task in which it took his team three hours to decide where to put an apostrophe in "National Singles Day"

Roving reporter asked people on the street to put apostrophes in the correct place in the following phrases:

Ladies Fashions

DVDs for sale

Two weeks holiday

and nobody got it right - or should that be

OP posts:
asicsgirl · 04/06/2008 10:49

asking people on the street is a bit unfair. many of us can't spell confidently without checking in a dictionary for example. same goes for punctuation. the pedants can rightly get annoyed when signs are misspelt/-punctuated as the makers presumably had time to check and didn't. but expecting everyone to be perfect when stopped on the street is unrealistic imho

SaintGeorge · 04/06/2008 10:57
asicsgirl · 04/06/2008 10:58

have a star StG

sleepychunky · 04/06/2008 11:34

for SaintGeorge - go to the top of the class!

OP posts:
sleepychunky · 04/06/2008 11:37

asicsgirl - I agree that stopping people on the street is a little unrealistic, but I would have thought that at least one person they stopped would have been able to get the correct apostrophe in one of the phrases. Interestingly most people wanted to put one in the "DVDs for sale" phrase, which of course is the only one which doesn't need one...

OP posts:
asicsgirl · 04/06/2008 11:41

nah, the telly poll was obv a self-selecting sample - all the people who know how to use apostrophes without looking it up are busy posting in pedants' corner, not roaming shopping centres looking for outside broadcast units to volunteer for

Enraha · 04/06/2008 16:39

"I am an apostrophe
Come and take a look at me
I'm not a comma, I'm not a full stop
I don't go in the middle
I go on top"

See, if Look and Read was compulsory viewing nowadays, would we have any of these dilemmas?

zippitippitoes · 04/06/2008 16:43

well i think apostrophes are easy enough to use..i do often wonder why if people are going to bopther with them they dont get it right on signs

psoting on ehere i never bother at all

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