July 18, 2003

Time to enter "spelling fascist" mode.

The leader of the DNC is Terry McAuliffe. Please note the spelling. One C.

I am by no means a fan of the man (I think he's a slimy, despicable worm), but I also realize the importance of spelling his name correctly.

After seeing yet another blogger misspell his name (I won't specify the blog, but it is one I read on a continuing basis), I did a little check on Google. The spelling "Terry McCauliffe" produced 198 hits, the vast majority of which were blogs, on both sides of the political spectrum. It's especially annoying to see the blogger misspell the name, and then quote a snippet of an article with the name spelled correctly.

This is not a typo issue; I myself am a lousy typist. It's not even a case of lousy proofreading. This is a case of not carefully reading one's source material. It bugs me tremendously, although I am not sure why.

(UPDATE—18July/9:00PM—In the same vein, it is Megan McArdle, not McCardle. Google shows 436 results for the misspelled version. Let it be known that I hold Ms. McArdle in mush higher esteem than the odious Mr. McAuliffe.)

posted on July 18, 2003 07:14 PM


From another spelling (and grammar) fascist: Bravo, Ron.

A man's name is the most precious string of letters in his world. It deserves to be treated with respect, even if the man himself does not. Of course, having one of the more easily misspelled last names extant, it could be predicted that I would say that.

But if you think it's tough to get a moderately complex name spelled right, you haven't tried to get a ten-year-old to pronounce "jewelry" or "February" properly!

posted by Francis W. Porretto on July 19, 2003 04:18 AM

You must get tired of saying "Two r's, two t's every time you give out your name...(grin)

My last name is only five letters long, but it is almost always misspelled (It sounds like another name that is far more common), so I can symphathize with you there.

Regarding pronunciation, I have to admit that I pronounce the second month as "Feb-yoo-ary", as do most Americans. It's wrong, it's sloppy, but it's so common that if one pronounces it correctly, people will look at the speaker as if he had three heads."Jewelry" is a bit easier to pronounce correctly, but the British spelling of the world (jewellery) works against us.

posted by Timekeeper on July 19, 2003 03:37 PM

I pronounce it 'Feb-roo-ary'. I don't have three heads, just three hands. ;)

I sympathize with the last name problem. Mine gets misspelled 'Kinsey', 'Kingsley' and 'Kinsly' on a regular basis.

posted by Kathy Kinsley on July 19, 2003 05:14 PM

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