Feeds

Suprise at spelling snafu sanctions

University lecturer waves through wonky wordage

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Proof that the revised maxim "If you can't beat 'em, fuck it all off and have some pie" is increasingly the norm reaches us today, as a senior university lecturer throws his hands aloft and declares a spelling amnesty. According to the Times, Dr Ken Smith of Buckinghamshire New University* suggests a list of 20 common mistakes should be waved through as 'variants'.

Smith is ostensibly voicing a plea for some logic to be applied to the notoriously mercurial English spelling system, but seems chiefly concerned with saving time and reducing hair-tearing for tutors beleaguered by constant balls-ups from students. The criminology lecturer, writing in the Times Higher Education mag, said: "Teaching a large first-year course at a British university, I am fed up with correcting my students' atrocious spelling. Aren't we all?

"But why must we suffer? Instead of complaining about the state of the education system as we correct the same mistakes year after year, I've got a better idea."

His dastardly plot is to loosen things up for 20 commonly-misspelt English words and allow alternative spellings such as "truely", "wierd" and "speach". The Times also informs us, as we peer at it through our trembling fingers, that Smith proposes the "their/thier" issue should be resolved by simplification.

"Why not just drop the word their altogether in favour of there?" he asks, as horns no doubt sprout from his brow. "It does not make any difference to the meaning of a sentence if you spell 'their' as 'thier' or 'there', so why insist on 'their'?" (All very well, Dr Smith, but where does that leave "they're", eh? Where?)

In a move guaranteed to perturb some Reg commenters**, Dr Smith also put forward the idea that we shouldn't fuss overmuch about the difference between "queue", "cue" and "Kew".

Naturally Smith's proposals will see a renewal of the huffings and puffings over school literacy standards. We at the Reg can only concur that education is lacking, but would suggest Dr Smith shelve his craven appeasement plans and consider introducing corporal punishment for his mother-tongue-mangling studes. Clearly, it's the only language they understand. ®

Bootnotes

* Buckingham New University runs a site about higher education for 11-16 year-olds called Be Coz U Can. An excellent start.

** Anyone correcting our deliberate (as in the headline) misspelling, or indeed our accidental misspelling, will be cast onto the barbecue.

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
NSA man: 'Tell me about your Turkish connections'
Spooks ask Dabbsy to suggest a nice hotel with pool
Russia sends SEX-CRAZED GECKOS to SPAAAAACE!
In space... no one can hear you're green...
Indian techies-in-training face down MAN-EATING LEOPARD - and WIN
Big cat causes big trouble at Mumbai college
Carlos: Slim your working week to just three days of toil
'Midas World' vision suggests you retire later, watch more tellie and buy more stuff
Yahoo! Japan! launches! service! for! the! dead!
If you're reading this email, I am no longer alive
Plucky Rockall podule man back on (proper) dry land
Bold, barmy Brit adventurer Nick Hancock escapes North Atlantic islet
Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo
'FIRE' caption on dashboard prompts dunderheaded hard shoulder halt
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.