or, stuff that I dragged out of my head

Location: Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada

Monday, October 02, 2006

Battle Stations

Remember what I said a month ago about people who write pull quotes and screw them up? The same thing can happen to people who write sub-heads and don't pay attention to the article itself.

Case in point: yesterday's television column, I Like To Watch, in Salon. The first page of the article is about the TV series "Battlestar Galactica", but whoever wrote the subhead has clearly never seen the show, nor read the article, because the subhead reads

Oh, how beautifully "Battleship Galactica" wallows in the hopelessness of the human plight. And let us praise "The Amazing Race" for all of its quarrelsome, enraged glory.


Well, we can blame momentary carelessness for that; it's not as if "battlestar" is an actual English word, whereas "battleship" is, so it's an easy enough mistake to make, I suppose. (The first comment on the article was someone taking note of this error, and sure enough, come evening it had been corrected.)

But on page two of the article, Heather Havrilesky writes the following sentence:

Instead of relying on rumors and third-hand reports, ABC could thrust all of those camera-hungry has-beens back into the spotlight, interviewing them about what went wrong or, better yet, who's fault it was that things didn't work out.

And no, goddammit, no no no! "Whose" and "who's" are two completely different words, as one is a possessive pronoun and the other is a contraction, and they don't mean the same thing and therefore they're not interchangeable, and I've seen this mistake again and again and again and actual writers keep making the same shameful mistake and there's no excuse.


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