If you spend a lot of time in Microsoft Word or similar programs, you’ve probably come across them: those instances where spellcheck (or grammar check) gets it horribly, horribly wrong. Whether it’s completely mixing up its/it’s and you’re/your or suggesting substitutions that completely change the meaning or even the politics of a sentence, automated programs can’t always be […]

Spellchecking software is a useful tool… except when it isn’t.

Microsoft Word’s “helpful” spelling and grammar suggestions offer everything from bad grammar and wacky word substitutions to suggestions that actually change the meaning of a text (no, Word, “blacker women” is not the same thing as “more black women,” for the love of God). I’m always coming […]

During the American Copy Editors Society (ACES) conference last weekend, I had the great pleasure of meeting Emmy Favilla, copy chief at Buzzfeed. I’m a big fan of the smart, comprehensive, and very inclusive Buzzfeed style guide, so it was a treat to speak with […]

Today is Trans Visibility Day and I’ve just come home from the American Copy Editors Society‘s 2015 conference in Pittsburgh, my hometown. It was a great weekend: I met some of my grammar-geek heroes, made lots of new friends, and learned a ton about […]

Some geeks get their jollies from science fiction; others write code or learn dead languages.  And some of us have a thing for reference books.

When I worked as a project manager in the translation industry, a coworker once fielded a call from an angry client complaining about the interpreter we’d sent.  He’d […]