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Co-workers as spellcheck


I just received this e-mail at work today (identifiying parts redacted to protect the mockworthy):

Website Typo contest and rewards

Hello Faculty and Staff. As of last friday, a website comprised of several webpages was put "live" online. It showcases some of our current efforts and acheivments, and serves as a resource, and even has a "reccomended reads", a section I hope expands as all of you and students send me suggestions via email. It also will help connect different people on campus who work on initiatives and offer an avenue of communication.

But on to the contest part of the email. Working on a Windows 2007 computer on the Cascade server to make the website forced me to often type straight into the server. As a result of the magnitude of text and work and my own pitiful ability to spell words as simple as "thier" on a regular basis, there are a fair number of typos, grammer errors and the like (cascade lacks a spell check... or at least it's annoying to use). So I would like your help in identifying them and fixing these typos.

So here's the deal: Go check out the site. If you read through the content, look for typos, etc. For every three errors you find and email me, you earn a beverage at the campus coffee shop. You just email me the page you found them on and indicate the error (i.e. "can you here the roar?). Because I am months out of college, I can only afford to get coffee for the first time an error is identified- so act fast. *BUT* I will wait one week before I make any changes, and in that time period you're welcome to find and list as many errors as you can. S/He who identifies the most errors, regardless of the time s/he emails me in the next week gets a smoothy.

So why not explore the new site and reconnect with the staunch grammerian inside us all?

Thanks everyone!"


tl;dr?

"I work at a college but am too lazy to be professional and too stupid to learn English, so I am asking the entire campus community to proofread my work and don't care that I'm broadcasting that laziness and stupidity to all of my co-workers and superiors and making myself look foolish."

Let's not even talk about the myriad of typos and grammatical errors in the e-mail itself. And this guy is a graduate of this very college! I'm so ashamed... :(

(I e-mailed him and pointed out this might not be the best way to showcase his department's hard work. I'll let you know if he replies.)

Comments

( 21 comments — Comment )
harlkyn
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:05 pm (UTC)
Tell that person to copy and paste their content off the website into Word and spellcheck it.
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:12 pm (UTC)
I know, right? How hard is that? And how hard is it to find someone on campus and ask them to give things a quick once-over?

He *just* graduated, so this is his first job. He's still transitioning from "everybody on campus is your friend" to "beware the political ramifications of every e-mail you send out because your co-workers are different from your friends." He'll learn. :)
(Deleted comment)
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:16 pm (UTC)
Yes, please! I'll be sure to pass them along - maybe I'll get a coffee out of it! *rolling eyes*
missfran
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:26 pm (UTC)
Oh, that's not how I read it. It looked to me like a way to encourage people to read a site they otherwise might not bother to read. The reader gets to feel smart, might earn a treat, and the writer gets his work read by a lot of people.
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:31 pm (UTC)
That was his intent; however, consider how the President of the college might read it. Or his boss. Or what the President might say to his boss when he reads it. Or what people will think while reading his website without knowing about his little marketing experiment. I mean, we're a groovy little liberal arts campus, sure, but this is more than a little excessive (and you can read his response below).

Having dealt with the professional and political ramifications of such things before in a college environment in the past, this thing has "bad idea" stamped all over it. I think it's going to come back to haunt him.
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:28 pm (UTC)
His reply:

"Thanks for bringing this up, Alan. I agree, asking the entire campus to be my proofreaders may be excessive, but I am simply experimenting with ways to unconventionally promote a site. As a recent graduate of the College, I know too well the constant deluge of emails that bombard us all each day. I think there's a tendancy for many people (especially in those all student emails) to eventually tune out and ignore potentially important messages. So in this message of let's say, medium importance, I thought I'd try something new that would save myself and publications some work and offer a fun alternative to the All Campus Email announcing a site many people may not have gone too before. Sure, I'm out of 10 bucks worth of coffee so far, but its been worth the colorful emails (over 30 so far!) alone. But, as this is an experiment, I have been most overjoyed to recieve responses like yours that give feedback on the method itself (I've gotten some from the opposite perspective as well) and will keep all comments in mind in my future experimentations."

My off-the-cuff thoughts:

1. Your supervisor must be very proud. I would love to see your review when he talks about your "future experimentations."

2. Every professional on this campus is overworked and understaffed because of state cutbacks, so, honestly, who the fuck has time to proofread your work?

3. Did you learn NOTHING while you were here? Surely you had to write papers, take English, communicate with your professors, etc.? We have surely failed you in this regard.

4. Wow, this really is your first job out of college, isn't it?
av8rmike
Oct. 14th, 2009 04:23 pm (UTC)
...but its been worth the colorful emails (over 30 so far!) alone.

I wonder how many of those "colorful" e-mails included the words "fucking idiot".
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 04:26 pm (UTC)
He sent it to all faculty, and I can't imagine any of them not lecturing him on the idiocy of this. It was also pointed out to me that the people who oversee our public web pages might not be too thrilled, either.
wasabi
Oct. 16th, 2009 10:27 pm (UTC)
Sweet christmas. I weep for the future.
esprix
Oct. 18th, 2009 02:41 am (UTC)
Srsly. I actually hope he gets called out for this, because otherwise he'll think this is perfectly appropriate professional behavior.
(Deleted comment)
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:33 pm (UTC)
Re: I think my head just exploded...
I refuse to reward his stupidity, and he will blithely regard any replies as such (plus, I don't have the time to do his job and am surprised anyone else on campus does).
montrealais
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:33 pm (UTC)
If he can afford that much coffee, he can probably afford a professional proofreader.
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 03:35 pm (UTC)
Or, I don't know, just fucking ASK ONE OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE PROFESSIONALS IN HIS DEPARTMENT TO HELP HIM. Gosh, we're paid for that, you know?
montrealais
Oct. 14th, 2009 04:57 pm (UTC)
Oh, c'mon. The English language is a frill, and your job can be done by a computer. Just like mine! Because computers are capable of comprehending what you are saying and writing idiomatic English!
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 06:10 pm (UTC)
I know! People don't need to pay for translation - there's that babelfish thingy! DUH!
farranger
Oct. 14th, 2009 05:28 pm (UTC)
Making fun of the illiterate is a positive character trait in my book. May I add you as a friend?
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 06:09 pm (UTC)
You may, though I promise no earth-shattering witticism with each and every post. :)
akirashima
Oct. 14th, 2009 05:46 pm (UTC)
I am going to recommend Out On Blue Six. which someday i will finally get another copy of but without the cards of credit it is not going to happen anytime soon. it sucks everything is online anymore.
esprix
Oct. 14th, 2009 06:09 pm (UTC)
What, pray tell, is that?
akirashima
Oct. 15th, 2009 03:16 am (UTC)
a book
perhaps you have heard of them
esprix
Oct. 15th, 2009 03:21 am (UTC)
Heard of them? I WORK with them!

What does said book have to do with this post?
( 21 comments — Comment )

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