usingtherightwords

Guaranteed to improve your English

Even Newsreaders Need Writers


Recently, I listened to an all-news radio station while driving and heard the reader tease a story about a crime involving unlucky passersby.

Only he didn’t say passersby; he put the s after the y. That is wrong but, unfortunately, very common.

Because the majority of our words are pluralized by adding at least an s, people want to do it for every word. But there’s no such word as passerbys.

There’s also the rule that says words ending in y are pluralized by dropping the y and adding ies. That would make it passerbies, which also is not a word. IF it were, I would pronounce it PASS-er-bees.

Some styles require the word be hyphenated, so passers-by and its singular form passer-by are correct.

To bad the newsreader wasn’t.

It’s funny: The news is supposed to be accurate, but how can it be when it is misspelled or misspoken?

I remember in college misspelling the city Tucson as Tuscon because that’s how it sounds. Credibility is at stake and with every mistake, it lessens.

So remember that lesson the next time you pass by.

Until next time! Use the right words!

leebarnathan.com

 

 

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December 10, 2012 - Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , ,

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