Category Archives: Journalism

Welcome, MSNBC readers!

I was wondering why my blog was going crazy with visits today!

If you haven’t yet heard, I’ve been featured in another piece — “Fastidious Spelling Snobs Pushed Over the Edge” by Diane Mapes on

It’s a great feature.  Nice work, Diane!

Welcome, readers.  Enjoy the blog — and if you have any submissions of grammar or spelling errors in your community, feel free to email me at kate.mcculley [at]

If you’re a news organization and would like to contact me for an interview — I’ve done educational grammar consulting and I’ve been featured as the resident grammarian on a few NPR segments — feel free to email me as well.

Thanks for visiting!


They just make it too easy.

I’ll let this picture from speak for itself:

I love it.

Racist Typo

I was reading the Metro on the train this morning when I came across a travel feature on Mystic, Connecticut.  I briefly scanned it — and I couldn’t believe my eyes.

Talking about a bar in town, this is how the piece begins:

The bar is rapidly filling up, and soon the air is thick with chatter and the chink of ice on glass.

I knew something wasn’t right.  I had seen that word before, and I was pretty sure it was a racist term.  After double-checking with a few coworkers and Urban Dictionary, I confirmed it.  It is a racist term for a Chinese person or a person of Asian descent.

How could this appear in the paper?!

Clearly, the writer, Linda Laban, was searching for an onomatopoeia of some kind.  Either she originally put in the word clink and an editor changed it, or she thought that the word chink had a good sound to it.  And I in no way think that she or the editors are racist. It looks like an accidental typo.

That being said, where was the editor to find this horrible error and remove it?

We all know that Metro is no stranger to errors — the paper is usually peppered with them.

Even today, there was a great blurb on the front page:

It is predicted that 56 billion people worldwide will be hypertensive by 2025.

At least I can laugh at that one.

Unnecessary Commas

I hate unnecessary commas.  It seems like they’re used all the time, often after a name.  Take this example that I just read on

For years, Christie Brinkley has thrown a big bash for daughter Sailor’s, summertime birthday – and this year was no different, even with her legal showdown with soon-to-be ex-hubby Peter Cook looming next week.


Just take it out.  It never should have been there.

This is just the tip of the iceberg.  I’m going to look for more…

We can only break the glass ceiling so much….

I found this on Facebook and it’s too good not to share here: