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Online Spelling

I was raised by an English teacher of a mother, and started reading at age 3.  Because of those two things, spelling and grammar have always come naturally to me.  I never received less than 100 on a spelling test (110 if there was extra credit) or less than an A on an English test or paper.  I was the kid who finished my in-class English exercises early and then popped around the classroom helping the other kids who didn't get it as easily.

When I graduated from law school and was clerking for a judge, I was driven insane by the amazingly poor quality of correspondence and documents allowed to leave law offices en route for judges' chambers.  At one point, I actually asked my judge if I could take a red pen to everything and send it back.  I was only half kidding.

I pride myself on the fact that nothing leaves my office without proper spelling, grammar, and punctuation.

Well, thank god I still have my Elements of Style.

I have been online since 1992, before there was actually an Internet, and there were just geeky teen boys running local discussion forums.

Yeah, I'm that old.  And that geeky.

I've been on the Knot for a long time (ignore my join date, it's not accurate), on the Nest, on handmade discussion forums, Irish discussion forums, legal discussion forums, business discussion forums, reefkeeping discussion forums, face painting discussion forums, and discussion forums I simply can't remember anymore.

It's not just the Knot.  On every forum, spelling, grammar, and punctuation have gotten sloppy.  And on every forum, there are those who simply don't care.  In fact, they're adamant, belligerent about not caring.  They're so hellbent on not caring that they purposely type in text speak and other slang.  They type in all lowercase, all caps, run-on sentences and paragraphs.  They use words, tense, and format improperly.  It destroys the content and context.  

No, this isn't school.  It isn't business.  You aren't required to type correctly and you won't be fired if you don't.  Nothing will show up negatively on your "permanent record."  But it wastes the reader's time in deciphering and is rude.

Worse, in my opinion, is that a talent that previously had come naturally to me, the talent for proper spelling, grammar, and punctuation, no longer does.  It was natural previously because of the books I read.  The problem is that now, in addition to the books I do still read, I read a lot online.  And constantly seeing your misspellings, improper grammar, and destruction of punctuation actually has diminished my abilities and caused me to second-guess myself.  Now when writing a business letter or pleading, I find myself referring to the dictionary or my Elements of Style to find out what's correct, when that's something I just knew before.  It pisses me off.  It annoys me.  It wastes my time and costs my clients money.

And I blame YOU.
You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
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Re: Online Spelling

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    Thank you for bolding "your" and "a lot." Also, thank you for posting. I agree that it is rude to purposely not care about your reader when posting.
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    Do not read the post above yours. For your own sake, I beg you.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:7abe2f7b-8796-45dd-b2e1-3bc21d179e63">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]Do not read the post above yours. For your own sake, I beg you.
    Posted by Manwaithiel[/QUOTE]
    I was thinking the exact thing. 
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    The "delima" post?  That's what prompted this.
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
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    Yeah, saw it after I posted that and read it.  I'm not kidding; that one looks like ESL to me.
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
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    I sincerely hope it is ESL but she said she was posting in a hurry so it's either that or just not taking the time to type a legible post.
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    I completely and utterly agree.  That's one of the nice things about NaNoWriMo; since everyone there is a writer, the forums read beautifully.
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    LD1970LD1970 member
    First Anniversary First Comment 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited November 2010
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:d5c1ca11-ccbd-41bd-abb0-230c238c8b81">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Online Spelling : I do that when I see misspellings on menus.  It drives me batty. 
    Posted by jcbsjr[/QUOTE]
    Me too!<div>
    </div><div>And Trix, I hereby give you a blanket apology on behalf of my brethren, too many of whom are, in fact, egotistical ba$tards.  I have fun winning against that sort.  It's all the more gratifying.</div>
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
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    Okay, okay, I get it.  I also agree that spelling and grammar are important and I typically have a clean track record regarding it.  I have a bachelors degree and a masters, please don't think I do not respect education!  You addressed this issue in a thorough and educational way and I applaud you.

    My issue had nothing to do with spelling, but with how people speak to each other.  I haven't posted much, but I have been reading a lot in the past few months.  This is opinionated of me, but I feel like if someone on here is asking for advice, either give them some relating to what they asked for, or else choose to move on without posting if you do not like the poster or their spelling (or anything else).  Instead, there are so many people who are so quick to immediately criticize the person for something they weren't even asking about!  I completely agree with criticism if it is part of your advice on the subject, but most of the time it is regarding a side note of their post that they did not waste time fully explaining.  Rather then get help, people get belittled.  And while the majority of it is laziness, some people genuinely have learning disabilities or were not well educated.  Girls are so mean to each other over petty crap that it not only degrades women, but it also takes away the impact when the person really has a genuine and valuable criticism.

    I still stand firm on my view of ending the nastiness to each other (but if that's what it's like I can just step away since apparently I'm an outsider) --- but agree with you about the misuse of the English language and respect your particular post.
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    Ash, my original post in this thread aside, what you may not have noticed or seen in the time you've been here is that there are people who will post questions... and then later come back and complain that there haven't really been responses or nothing helpful has been added.

    The problem with some posts is that they're really just too difficult to understand because the person posting is incapable or unwilling to actually communicate while writing.  Even if a post can be waded through and made semi-comprehensible, it's asking an awful lot of a bunch of people who are spending their free time, unpaid, trying to give decent advice to actually have to do extra work due to your (and I mean the general "your," not you specifically) laziness.  Why should you get to be lazy and give me extra work to understand what the hell you're saying?  How is that OK?

    It's really not too much to ask people to break things into paragraphs, when all that means is hitting a single key two times, or to ask them to please try and form actual sentences.

    I really do think it's pretty obvious when someone's got an ESL issue or something's a typo, even a repeated one (for some reason, my hands refuse to type "the" quickly, it invariably comes out "teh" and I have to correct it)... versus all the obnoxious text speak or just a refusal to make any attempt at all at communicating in a basically effective manner.

    No one's asking anyone to use and SAT vocabulary.  No one's asking anyone to be brilliant.  But if you're going to communicate in writing, please write so you can be understood.
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
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    LD1970LD1970 member
    First Anniversary First Comment 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited November 2010
    Retread,

    You're right.  In the context in which I used it, the word "god" should have been capitalized.  I don't capitalize it these days, and you've made me realize that in certain circumstances I should.  My lack of capitalization has been a reaction to my Jewish upbringing, which required spelling it "G-d" because of a prohibition against writing it out at all.  Still, I didn't realize that made me write it improperly.

    As for the rest, this is my rant, not just about the Knot, but the general movement toward "I don't care if it's not for school or work" that pervades the Internet.  Is it welcoming?  Perhaps not.  It's my opinion, and apparently I'm not alone.

    As for the UK, I do frequent many Irish-interest and other international discussion forums and do make an allowance for alternate spellings in other countries.  In that case, neither is more correct.  Indeed, my favorite author is Robert Louis Stevenson, a Scot, so I'm more than familiar with British writing.

    I've also commented that you can tell the difference between ESL and laziness.  It's the laziness that grates.

    My father was not born in the US and still cannot spell.  Hebrew is a very phonetic language, and so English is exceedingly difficult as a second language for people from countries in that sort of situation.  My father, though, is neither careless nor unintelligent.  Were he to write here, you could tell the difference.
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:b6597d4d-08ad-420d-9bb4-1540279ad944">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]Okay, okay, I get it.  I also agree that spelling and grammar are important and I typically have a clean track record regarding it.  I have a bachelors degree and a masters, please don't think I do not respect education!  You addressed this issue in a thorough and educational way and I applaud you. My issue had nothing to do with spelling, but with how people speak to each other.  I haven't posted much, but I have been reading a lot in the past few months.  This is opinionated of me, but I feel like if someone on here is asking for advice, either give them some relating to what they asked for, or else choose to move on without posting if you do not like the poster or their spelling (or anything else).  Instead, there are so many people who are so quick to immediately criticize the person for something they weren't even asking about!  I completely agree with criticism if it is part of your advice on the subject, but most of the time it is regarding a side note of their post that they did not waste time fully explaining.  Rather then get help, people get belittled.  And while the majority of it is laziness, some people genuinely have learning disabilities or were not well educated.  Girls are so mean to each other over petty crap that it not only degrades women, but it also takes away the impact when the person really has a genuine and valuable criticism. I still stand firm on my view of ending the nastiness to each other (but if that's what it's like I can just step away since apparently I'm an outsider) --- but agree with you about the misuse of the English language and respect your particular post.
    Posted by ashleiringo[/QUOTE]

    I hardly call saying that I really just can't understand your post degrading to women. That's a bit of an exaggeration.
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    bablingbrookebablingbrooke member
    5 Love Its Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited November 2010
    Retread, with all the respect in the world, give me a break.

    This isn't UK vs. US.  No one calls out "favourite" or "colour".  No one calls out typos unless they're so pervasive you truly have trouble reading it.  (I too have a problem with always typing it "teh" and having to go back and correct it.)  I've never seen a special ed issue, and can count on one hand the number of times it's been ESL (who, by the way, often spell better than native speakers, case-in-point being my DH, who not only speaks English as a fourth language, but didn't grow up using the Roman alphabet).  People can tell the difference, and when there's a mistake, people own up to it.

    People get called out when they are being lazy.  When you are using a medium that depends on you being intelligible, you need to follow the rules: grammar, spelling, punctuation.  BASIC rules.  You don't even have to reach high school to know these rules, not even junior high.  We're talking that basic.  People don't take them seriously.  I'm in law school, I teach legal writing to underclassmen, I see errors all the time.  I wonder how the hell they got to such a good school.  I weep.  I teach them.  They start to take it seriously.  They change.  I bonded with my judge during a recent clerkship interview about how important it is to write clearly and intelligibly.

    People need to read more.  When you read, you don't have to worry about the rules because they come second-nature to you.

    I applaud you, LD!  Marry me!
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    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    bablingbrookebablingbrooke member
    5 Love Its Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited November 2010
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:da554190-6567-4965-a07a-493a4a290ed4">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Online Spelling : I hardly call saying that I really just can't understand your post degrading to women. That's a bit of an exaggeration.
    Posted by Manwaithiel[/QUOTE]
    Seriously?  I'm going to use my LOL here.<div>
    </div><div>ashleringo, I said this earlier and I'll say it again, if you are this thin-skinned, the internet is probably not the place for you.  </div>
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    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:a7d2548f-093f-427d-89e6-4b8ecc77fc79">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Online Spelling : Two lawyers in the house?  We'd kill each other!
    Posted by LD1970[/QUOTE]
    It would be short-lived but passionate!
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    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:d5c1ca11-ccbd-41bd-abb0-230c238c8b81">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Online Spelling : I do that when I see misspellings on menus.  It drives me batty. 
    Posted by jcbsjr[/QUOTE]

    I'm glad I'm not the only one who does this.

    I also have a tendency to type "teh" instead of "the". 
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    I don't think your classification is fair, Retread, but you and I will have to agree to disagree on that.
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    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    jaimed99jaimed99 member
    First Comment
    edited November 2010
    I would like to add that I'm glad that my browser has a built-in spell-check...it actually checks my spelling as I type...I love it! I think they all do at this point, don't they?
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:e43f975d-9e3d-4d0c-b845-45924e4ffd0d">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]I would like to add that I'm glad that my browser has a built-in spell-check...it actually checks my spelling as I type...I love it! I think they all do at this point, don't they?
    Posted by jaimed99[/QUOTE]
    Mine do (I use Firefox and Safari) but I don't think it's universal.
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    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    Absolutely true, Retread, and I tell my kids to always proofread on their own (and I always proofread my stuff on paper, pen in hand).  However, it would resolve 99% of the intelligibility problems on this board.  
    Courtesy of megk8oz
    image
    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    Wow, FFMaid, haven't thought about her in a long time.  
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    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    Spell checkers are not 100% reliable, but I am generally a good speller. I proof and re-read anything I post, from message board posts to Facebook, but I'm not perfect. I'm just glad for that extra backup.
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    I really, really want to know how letting someone know that their post is hard to read and suggesting some corrections is degrading to women? I would think it would be the opposite. And I am a feminist. Especially since we are all women. So, it's not like all the men on the internet are telling all the women on the internet that their spelling, grammar, and usage are wrong. Men and women make unintelligible posts on the internet, and men and women tell them how difficult their posts are to read. 

    Also, I refuse to write god as a proper noun, because I do not recognize it as such. You all can. It is the widely accepted form of the word in most contexts, but I believe that is because monotheistic religions are the widely accepted beliefs that most people hold at the present. Christians can force a lot of things on our country, but they can't as of yet force me to capitalize "G" in god. Sorry.
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    See, I see it as more of a "stop being such a lazyass and making me do all the work that you should be doing if you want my help."
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
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    Yeah, it's not the same as correcting someone's facebook status. That is their own personal page where they share what they wish with their friends. I still judge, but I would never correct (even if it were anonymous) because that is their own personal commentary. On a message board, where the OP is actively seeking advice from others, it is rude not to consider your audience. If the audience has a problem with it, at least some of them are going to say it. 

    It is like any adult telling any other adult (in a work or social environment) that you don't know what they're talking about. I don't find that degrading. If someone doesn't understand what I'm saying, I rephrase to find a way to say what I'm saying where my audience at the time will understand.
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    bablingbrookebablingbrooke member
    5 Love Its Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited November 2010
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:569f431d-35db-48cb-a9ed-b7c4e05697c6">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]See, I see it as more of a "stop being such a lazyass and making me do all the work that you should be doing if you want my help."
    Posted by LD1970[/QUOTE]
    Agreed.  We're not calling out stupidity, just laziness.  And since when is it degrading to tell someone, "Stop being lazy and do the bare minimum"?  Not a good speller?  There are tools to help you.  Long story?  Divide it into paragraphs.  Writing a block of text with little to no capitalization or punctuation makes it really REALLY difficult to read.  And it's entirely fair to say so.<div>
    </div><div>Help me help you!  </div>
    Courtesy of megk8oz
    image
    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:0d8ff763-5a53-4bed-b943-7feda0ced520">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Online Spelling : Agreed.  We're not calling out stupidity, just laziness.  And since when is it degrading to tell someone, "Stop being lazy and do the bare minimum"?  Not a good speller?  There are tools to help you.  Long story?  Divide it into paragraphs.  Writing a block of text with little to no capitalization or punctuation makes it really REALLY difficult to read.  And it's entirely fair to say so. Help me help you!  
    Posted by bablingbrooke[/QUOTE]

    <div>Amen!</div><div>
    </div><div>I should give you ladies a piece of anything my daughter's stepmom writes...you would have a migraine trying to decipher it.</div>
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_online-spelling?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:8f532c8a-f156-41d1-ab16-e76a2e02b792Post:9d7dd04d-7dc3-466c-986c-1af19f9144fb">Re: Online Spelling</a>:
    [QUOTE]The "delima" post?  That's what prompted this.
    Posted by LD1970[/QUOTE]

    I am the one that wrote that post and I will be the first to admit I am by no means the best speller. I do rely  on spell check. After it was brought to my attention i went and mashed the spell check button again. It said there were no errors. I figured i had spelt it right the first time. The next time i do post on here i will have to copy and past a word i am not sure of and google it.
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    Heather, it wasn't in reaction to you, it was in reaction to the girl who claimed that spelling and grammar don't count if you aren't in school, which was infuriating to a lot of people on here.  It was a response to her attitude, not your typo.  Don't worry about it.
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    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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