Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Grammar Nazis

Writing Tuesday

The Battle of a Grammar Nazi

We all know people out there who are grammar Nazis - you know what I'm talking about, those who have to correct others on their grammar/misspellings. I admit that I can be a bit of a grammar Nazi myself at times. It doesn't help that I was copy editor on my high school newspaper for two years. I notice mistakes easily and can be the first one to point out if something is spelled incorrectly.

The problem is this. When it comes to social media, I have seen people correct each other a lot recently (mostly on Facebook) when someone has made a grammatical error. It's driving me a little crazy. Having correct grammar is important, but does it really matter when it comes to social media and texts? I don't think so. To be honest, all of us have probably made some grammatical errors in our life. The social media platform is the one place(s) where it shouldn't matter if we make that mistake or not. And here's why: you never know why they made that mistake in the first place. Maybe they were in a hurry to say something or, pardon my language, damn autocorrect got in the way - I think all of us has been a victim of an autocorrect mishap and we can laugh about it later. To me, correcting someone on social media about a grammatical error is rude. It can embarrass the person if they didn't mean to make the mistake in the first place. It's just something that happens and at times, is out of their control. Maybe some people have trouble differentiating different words (like any commonly misspelled words - for example, their, they're and there) and some words are just plain tricky.

Since I mentioned that social media is the one platform that grammatical errors can be looked at as slip-ups, now let's talk about where having correct grammar is important. The following list includes just a few examples:
  1. business letters
  2. school papers (whether elementary, high school or college)
  3. correspondence of any kind (e-mail, business, etc)
  4. books/stories/articles (if you're a writer or want to be a writer)
There's nothing wrong with being a grammar Nazi. However, just like in everything else, there are times when it would be considered appropriate to correct someone on a grammatical error and times when its inappropriate or doesn't have to be made into a big thing when it shouldn't be.  By the way, it can drive me crazy if I see something said wrong, either grammatically or spelling wise, but I let it slide (especially on social media) because mistakes happen.

Happy Reading and Keep on Writing!


No comments:

Post a Comment