John McIntyre, whom James Wolcott calls "the Dave Brubeck of the art and craft of copy editing," writes on language, editing, journalism, and other manifestations of human frailty. Comments welcome. Identifying his errors relieves him of the burden of omniscience. Write to jemcintyre@gmail.com, befriend at Facebook, or follow at Twitter: @johnemcintyre. Back 2009-2012 at the original site, http://weblogs.baltimoresun.com/news/mcintyre/blog/ and now at www.baltimoresun.com/news/language-blog/.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Save money: Cut back on editing

A correction from The Washington Post:

A Nov. 26 article in the District edition of Local Living incorrectly said a Public Enemy song declared 9/11 a joke. The song refers to 911, the emergency phone number.

From the Morning Call, Allentown, Pennsylvania:

Judge nixes please for man, who's accused of hosting racy underage drinking party, and sneds him to prison for stalking.

From the lead paragraph of a New York Times article:

It is the breakfast hour, the day before Thanksgiving and the lobby is busy with clean-looking families who are up and Adam, ready to set off in their varsity-letter jackets and Rockports for some holiday shopping, maybe a show.

From the Associated Press:

Energy shortages and rationing could be exacerbated by Colombia's decision last week to reduce exports of electricity to Venezuela, Lopez added. Colombia's energy minister, Hernan Martiez sidth douhtha frcd olmba o to sppyig Veezela with 70 to 80 megawatts a day.

Tell me more about how much better it is to get copy from the writer to the reader with “fewer touches.”

A prelate from Baltimore

Mary Glasspool, who was elected bishop suffragan of the Episcopal Diocese of Los Angeles yesterday, is canon to the bishops in the Episcopal Diocese of Maryland. She is properly referred to as the Rev. Canon Mary Glasspool.

Her election was of more than common interest, because she is the second openly gay person to be elected a bishop in the Episcopal Church, the Rt. Rev. V. Gene Robinson having been elected bishop of New Hampshire in 2003.

The Associated Press article on her election called her merely the Rev. Mary Glasspool and also said that she had been elected an assistant bishop. No. Both assistant bishops and suffragan bishops are auxiliaries to diocesan bishops, but an assistant bishop is appointed to serve in a diocese, and a suffragan bishop is elected to the post. The latter is harder to dislodge.

The article on her election in yesterday’s Baltimore Sun was apparently an unedited or lightly edited AP version. There was, regrettably, no staff contribution, though Canon Glasspool’s election had been pending over the weekend and was completed in the early evening.