Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Why Proofreading's Important

One of my sidelines is proofreading, something most folks don't find exciting -- myself included -- but it is a necessary boredom. Proofreading can save a writer from embarrassing blunders.

A friend sent me an e-mail, one of those infamous messages that have probably been floating around the 'net for years, veracity questionable. In it are the following "real" headlines that could have used a skilled and sufficiently caffeinated proofer:

Man Kills Self Before Shooting Wife and Daughter
This one I caught in the SGV Tribune the other day and called the Editorial Room and asked who wrote this. It took two or three readings before the editor realized that what he was reading was impossible. They put in a correction the next day.

Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
No crap, really? Ya think?

Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
Now that's taking things a bit far!

Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
What a guy!

Miners Refuse to Work after Death
No-good-for-nothing' lazy so-and-so's!

Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
See if that works any better than a fair trial!

War Dims Hope for Peace
I can see where it might have that effect!

If Strike Isn't Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
Ya think?!

Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
Who would have thought!

Enfield (London) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide
They may be on to something!

Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
You mean there's something stronger than duct tape?

Man Struck By Lightning: Faces Battery Charge
He probably IS the battery charge!

New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
Weren't they fat enough?!

Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
That's what he gets for eating those beans!

Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
Do they taste like chicken?

Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
Chainsaw Massacre all over again!

Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
Boy, are they tall!

Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead
Did I read that right?

(Hey, if the original author of the message is out there somewhere, got any more of these goofs on file?)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Yeah. ;)

I was talking to someone while typing yesterday, and substituted one letter for another in a blog post--let's just say, glad I caught it before going to print.

thanks for sharing!