Thursday, September 16, 2004

Cheap shot

Sidney Goldberg has a bone to pick with New York Times copy editors. And I'd say he's picked it clean in this National Review column.

In an article titled "Paper of Record Mistakes: The Times's copy editors are either illiterate or asleep," he writes:
The Times's corrections box, on page 2, has become one of the most-read features in the newspaper. All the Stevens can write in that their name is spelled Stephen, and the Stephens can write in that their name is spelled Steven. But inanimate objects cannot write in, and so the numerous spelling and grammatical errors concerning places and things go uncorrected.
But wait, there's more!
These are not in the category of everyday typos, inevitable in every newspaper. No, these are errors that display an ignorance of orthography and grammar.
He then goes on to cite a list of everyday errors that irk him: lead vs. led, that vs. which, which vs. what.

And all of this seems to be wrapped around an old beef: that the Times was too hard on Dan Quayle's potato vs. potatoe gaffe. (I think he got a bad rap there, just as I think Al Gore endures too many Internet-invention jokes. But that's beside the point.)

It's more partisan wrangling being taken out on copy editors. (Of course, it is the National Review; I'm certainly not surprised. But pick a partisan target! This is plain silly.)

Then again, I guess they haven't heard about the Rim Rats endorsement.


At 6:03 PM, September 16, 2004, Blogger Bill said...

Many years ago I asked Allan Siegal, with all due respect, why the first edition of the Times was so darn dirty. He explained that the deadline structure (and abuse thereof) gave the copy editors very little time to do their job. Now that I'm in a similar situation, on the national desk of the Washington Post, I understand. Boy, do I understand.

At 9:24 PM, September 16, 2004, Blogger Nicole said...

Watch out, Bill. Don't let Sidney see your weakness or you could be next!


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