It’s Offensive

I got this email today:

It’s = "It is."
Its = possessive

From your website:

"I’ve written here before about the unethically close relationship between
Writer’s Digest and it’s vanity press advertisers."

"The CW has leaked it’s fall schedule… and it doesn’t include EVERWOOD or

Please stop offending your readers with such sloppiness and/or ignorance.

Very Truly Yours,

It’s sloppiness. I know the rule, but I make the mistake anyway. It’s one of my many flaws. I also have a hard time spelling "marriage," "villain," "similar," "envelope," and "weird" correctly. But I don’t spend a lot of time proofing my blog posts (okay, none at all), so if you offend that easily, I suggest you visit my brother’s blog instead and make sure he’s using the term "fucktard" correctly.

16 thoughts on “It’s Offensive”

  1. I had a professor in my MFA program who wrote “FUCK NO!” in large red letters across my script page when I used “it’s” for “its”. When I wrote “your” for “you’re”, he wrote “YOU’RE KILLING ME!”
    Since then, I’ve been a little more careful in my usage. But do I care if YOU have a stray apostrophe or two? Fuck no!

  2. “Villain” is a tough one for me too. “Separately” is one that kills me. So are “travelling” and “apparently”. I misspell those sometimes.

  3. Well, considering a group blog I’m on is superheroesandvillians…. I can’t say too much. I couldn’t believe it when I discovered we had spelled the url wrong.
    The only reason I ever get it’s and its right is because of Word. I’d get it wrong every single time otherwise.

  4. I use ecto for posting on my blog. It’s a desktop program, so you can write whenever you like and post when you have an internet connection. Best of all, it has an inline spellchecker to keep me from making those exact same goofs you mention.

  5. Who needs a spell checker when you have a spouse who’s a writer? Back before we were married, we’d flirt via IM. She’d spell check me THEN.

  6. Seriously? This guy (or girl, but most girls aren’t so brazen) actually took the time to berate you over an apostrophe error? What a douche. A blog is not a screenplay or an official document of any kind. I’m an English teacher dammit, and I’m not offended. That guy needs to grab the old stick and yank it out of his ass.

  7. Yes, Lee, give back your contracts, pull your books from publication, dismantle your blog, hand back your IAMTW(sp?) badge and hang your head in shame.
    *roll eyes*
    *plant tongue firmly in cheek*
    *suggest Lee reset his spam filters for the email account*

  8. It must be rough for Pinky, having that much time on his or her hands. How bored does a person need to be to direct that much attitude toward something so trivial?

  9. I’m not Pinky, but if published writers don’t care for correct spelling, whom should young people look up to then?
    It’s neither a difficult term nor is it a single mistake from writing quickly, but it’s one of the most prevalent mistakes people make. As with Your/you’re, their/they’re/there, I think a writer should try and keep these mistakes at bay, *especially* if he knows that’s one of his more usual mistakes.
    Or do you simply not care about your blog posts?

  10. My newest vocabulary word: “fucktard”. Excuse me while I go somewhere today just so I can attempt to use it on someone. I think the person who sent that email applies. I do that crap all the time too. Your/you’re their/there/they’re. It’s all because we’re typing fast as it comes through our heads. Give me a break. I have a friend who’s a lawyer who’s (whose?) as bad at that as I am and we have a rule: “Read what I’m thinking, not what I type.”

  11. Actually, Patrick, if you want to be correct, it should read as follows: “…up to whom should young people look, then?”
    If you want to be anal about it.

  12. I think it’s ironic that you received this email, but tell your butt-kissing fans to back off from the ‘douche’ name-calling as that’s so lame. The sun shines out of few people’s asses, and even ‘real’ writers make grammatical mistakes.
    It’s not odd that some people would find it odd to find grade school errors on your blog. In the grand scheme of things, it’s probably not that important. But then again, if one lets the little things go, what else is on the long slide. That’s just how some people think.
    It’s been 7 years on now that I am proof-reading the letters and proposals of my business partner. He just won’t stop using their, they’re and there incorrectly. Sometimes I think he does it on purpose, just to show me that he cares. We fight about it about one a year. The rest of the time, I just grit my teeth.
    Anyway, it’s easy to remember when to use
    it’s and its if you follow a simple rule: if you would say it is, then use it’s. Or more correctly: if one would say it is, then use it’s. Similar for your and you’re. If one would say you are, use you’re.


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