Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Ebay worries me...

I love eBay. The whole "will it sell?", "will I win it?" thing. Great. Better than a brisk walk.

But I am worried.

Have you read the descriptions of the goods on eBay? Oh my God! Who writes these things? Semi-literate children? An infinite number of monkeys on typewriters? Apparently not; Joe Public writes them.

Joe has, it seems, never been able to spell, punctuation is a completely lost art and the whole act of creating a sentence seems to have skipped by. We are ultimately faced with a melange of text-speak, incorrect spelling and complete disregard for our beautiful language.

Does it matter?

Of course it matters! We communicate with others, in the absence of aural information, by written words. The spelling of a word is not optional in any sense. Words should be spelled correctly. This is one of those occasions when it is just as easy to get it right.

I know our language is changing. In my own lifetime there have been thousands of additions to English. Great. All for it. But when words are mangled and battered out of all recognition, we are doing something wrong. English is a superb language. We have traces of many other languages within ours. All the Germanic languages, the Romance languages, languages from the former British Empire - they are all there. English is a genuine polyglot. We should take more care of the amazing communication device that is English.

I blame the teachers. Oh damn; I am a teacher.

1 comment:

fiona said...

Love this post - and completely agree with it!