Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Are the illiterates taking over?

At the risk of being called a total b*tch, I must comment on the quality of writing I have seen on comments associated with various publications, and on the web in general. You know the drill: A news story is reported, then comments are submitted. It all makes me think that we are becoming a nation of illiterates. There’s no use of capitals, horrendous spelling, no punctuation and more. No one knows the difference between it’s and its, your and you’re, they’re, there and their.

Do I dare say that the “it’s vs. its” is my biggest beef? Even supposedly professional websites are riddled with that mistake. Think for a minute: It is = it’s; Its is possessive – think of it as the exception to the rule. Just pause for a moment and think about it.

Are people that uneducated or do they simply not reread their messages before hitting the “send” button?

Is the keyboard on their Blackberries just so small that they can’t hit the correct letters?
Are they so eager to send in their 2-cents worth that they don’t care if they’re perceived as idiots?

I wouldn’t expect quality literature, but is it so hard to construct a simple sentence?
With the imminent death of newspapers, so-called "citizen journalism" is increasing. The Internet entitles everyone to his or her opinion as opposed to the more objective reporting found in print publications. But if you’re going to put it out there, don’t embarrass yourself.

Writers have always been notoriously underpaid, an issue that’s become all the more apparent since I’ve been seeking more free-lance work. Wannabes are posting on Examiner and getting paid pennies, if at all. I registered with Associated Content and Demand Studios just to get out there. I have plenty of material that I can recycle., but I doubt that it will be worth the effort.

To get paid a living wage for what I do really well? Chances are slim or none.
Maybe one of these days I will stay in my jammies and read a book from cover to cover. And let the illiterates take over the web.

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