Our ridiculous grammar errors and how the internet is responsible for it

Our ridiculous grammar errors and how the internet is responsible for it

It is uncertain what or who is to be blamed for the terrible state the art of writing is in. The mix of such things as autocorrect, writer’s laziness, current culture and the radical transformation our languages are going through account for some of the unbelievable errors we are seeing today. You don’t even have to be a grammarian to know that messages can get mixed up due to poor grammar, and as a creative or freelance writer, the last thing you want to do is miscommunicate your message.

An error-free writing is perhaps almost unattainable, but with access to many online tools, the least we can do is take advantage of these tools. And yes, it is possible to have a near-perfect writing in 2020. Dialectal preferences are indeed a thing, but what we are talking about here isn’t a matter of dialect but of poor grammar, irrespective of the world region you are from.

Below, we explore eight of the most ridiculous grammar errors that are most common on the internet today.

1.   Woman = One Woman
Women = More than one woman

How this one gradually became a trend on twitter is still beyond me. It unbelievably spread like wildfire, and before we knew it, it was everywhere. The fact that you have to tell grown men and women that this is wrong is in itself wrong.


They even got an official UN account committing this unforgivable error?



I know it’s hard to believe but it is more common than you think. Search the interwebs and be bedazzled at how many people write this.

2.    Their vs. They’re vs. There

Dear Lord, protect us from all evil and keep us safe from those who can’t tell theirthere” from their “they’re”. 

3.    Based off of

Probably the most off-putting of the bunch. It is in fact hard to correct people who formally, casually and colloquially use this phrase. Why? Because everybody from your police officers to your congressmen to college freshmen, your local journalists and your dentists all say it.
However, the correct term is “based on”, so next time before you use your favourite “based off of”, ask yourself: are you switching off your base or switching it on. You are building a premise and you don’t build off, you build on something.

4.    Your vs. You’re

You’re is the contraction of ‘you are’; a conjugation of the verb ‘to be’.

Example: 

You’re the man.

You’re welcome.

You’re really terrible at maths.

Your, on the other hand, is a second person pronoun, also known as possessive adjective.

Example: 

Your brother’s dog has gone missing.

Your tens of thousands of followers couldn’t save you from your emotional instability.
Many of your coworkers are nothing but cowards and hypocrites.

Our ridiculous grammar errors and how the internet is responsible for it

5.    Double negatives

In my experience, this has been the most difficult one to explain to people. People just don’t get that double negatives within a sentence creates eventually a positive one. Even in simple arithmetic, we know that a negative multiplied by a negative equals a positive.

Common example of double negatives used in writing or speech include:

Don’t go nowhere.

I ain’t got no time.

Ain’t nobody does it better.

That girl ain’t done nothing to hurt nobody (This is definitely a triple negative)
So when you say, “don’t go nowhere”, it becomes “do not go nowhere” and becomes “do go somewhere”.

Similarly, “I ain’t got no time” also becomes, “I got time”.

6.    Everyday vs. Every day

Contrary to what some people think, every day and everyday are completely different in use. In all fairness, it is easy to confuse them for each other primarily because they are not only made up of the same word(s)/letters, but also because they have the same pronunciation.

However, everyday is a single word and is an adjective used to describe something that happens daily. For example, “everyday traffic” meaning your random/average/usual traffic as opposed to the out-of-the-blue traffic that happens once in a lifetime. 

Every day, apparently is made up of two separate words; every and day. In this phrase, every is an adjective that modifies the noun day and is synonymous with “each day”. An example would be, “I go to school every day”.
Try replacing every with each in a particular sentence and you will quickly decipher whether everyday or every day suits the context.

7.    Practice vs. Practise

Both words look similar and sound exactly the same but have different meanings and contextual use. The ‘c’ and ‘s’ differentiates the proper use of the word. Practice is a noun; an act, the deed being done while practise is the verbal form of practice. So while you are an expert in the practice of patience, you practise patience when need be.

Examples:

It took a lot of practice for me to master the Latin language – noun

I had to practise Latin a lot to speak it this well – verb

My swimming practice only lasts two hours – noun

I practise swimming for only two hours – verb

So go out there today and practise your practice.

NB: This rule doesn’t apply to American English

8.    A part vs. Apart

There is actually a lot less confusing about the use of this one. Apart from the fact that they are made up of the same letters, their meanings are exactly opposite of each other.
A part = “a part of” while apart = “not a part of”. 

It is indeed interesting to know that these words made of the same letters, that also seem to share the same origin could mean two different things. Not just different, but also almost exactly opposite meanings. While one includes you, the other locks you out. All the more reason you should use the right one in the right context.

Let’s do better 🙂

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