proofreading be damned

http://princetontory.com/archives/2005_04_10_index.phpThere sure are some crappy articles floating around the Internet (not that you’ll find any here). Here‘s a perfect example. The large issue here is that the very premise of the article is simply unimportant: a college has banned the use of Wikipedia as a citable source in its history classes. Every paper I’ve ever done which has needed to involve the slightest hint of truth has either prohibited websites altogether or allowed only the most trustworthy ones. There’s absolutely nothing unreasonable about banning the massive “anyone can write anything” database that is Wikipedia. Of course there is a lot of good material to be found on Wikipedia and they have some good checks in place to do their best to ensure accuracy, but if I can go write something on it right now for a college student to cite in his research paper, I can see that their wariness is warranted. As a minor grievance, the article also contains several typos or grammatical errors, including “students who continue citing could face reduce grades” and “no is no specified punishment for the first offense.”

And then there are these crappy news articles that I’ve been collecting for a while because their titles have been so great. In each case, the title at the top of the page has been corrected but the URL remains erroneous:

That last one is good because the title of the article has been completely changed to “Shilpa Shetty Takes Back Racism Charge.” I didn’t even read the article. Then there’s this article, which used to be titled “Ozone layer bigger and bigger,” but was properly changed to “Ozone hole bigger and bigger.” And, finally, who can exist without knowing that “Dinosaurs in Spain grazed mainly on the plain“? I really thought they grazed on the rocky mountain peaks myself, so this is informative to me. And it’s every bit as much fun to say as “she sells seashells down by the seashore.”

3 thoughts on “proofreading be damned

  1. I once edited Millard Fillmore’s Wikipedia page to say that “[he] gave over 50 million Americans STDs himself during his term as president, which was quite a feat considering there were only 26 million American citizens while he was in office.”

    P.S. I hate Millard Fillmore.

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