A public shaming of those found guilty of grammatical errors will take place at the Idler Academy Bad Grammar Award 2014 this Thursday.
Sadly, it is sold out but we thought you might like to know who is in the running. Contenders include Tesco, the NHS, Tristram Hunt and the Army Careers Office, who have all committed heinous crimes with words and punctuation. Jeremy Paxman, Rowley Leigh and Hadley Freeman make up the judging panel and the winner will be announced at a ceremony taking place at the Academy’s HQ in west London.
The organisers hope that by pointing out the mistakes made by the people and institutions that should know better, the nation’s grammar will improve. We’re just wondering if anyone will turn up to collect their medal of dishonour…
Have a look at the shortlist below:
Crime: using ‘less’ not ‘fewer’ in reference to numbers on loo-roll packaging. ‘Same Luxury. Less Lorries’. Also for describing its orange juice as ‘most tastiest’.
2. The NHS.
Crime: confusion of subject and object in a letter. ‘Your appointment has now been organised to attend Queen Mary’s Hospital…’ And an aberrant apostrophe: ‘The RDC Suite’s are clearly signposted’.
3. Apostrophe, the café chain.
Crime: aberrant apostrophe in a marketing slogan. ‘Great taste on it’s way’.
4. Tristram Hunt.
Crime: tautology and other errors. He was accused by Mr Gove of bad grammar in the House of Commons earlier this year. The tautology was ‘ongoing continuing professional development’. Full transcript in Hansard Jan 29 2014, column 931. Note: the ‘English teacher’ mentioned was Nevile Gwynne, author of Gwynne’s Grammar and Gwynne’s Latin.
5. Army Careers Office.
Crime: using ‘you’re’ for ‘your’ on a sign in window. ‘For any inquires [sic] please contact you’re nearest Army Careers Office.’
6. The primary schools of Great Britain.
Crimes: many and various, including using ‘are’ for ‘our’ in the following sign in a playground. ‘We all wash are hands after playing in the sandpits’.