Archive for June 2008

Why those cheap SEO articles and press releases outsourced to foreign writers aren’t working as well as you think

Today’s post is a rant about why $3 SEO articles outsourced to writers in low-income countries are not working as well as their writers claim. Yes, the articles and press releases may rank well — but are they actually driving any new eyeballs to your site?

On this page, you can learn why the answer is probably no.

And you want me to take your IQ test?

I’ll admit that Internet advertising banners are not necessarily expected to adhere to the strictest rules of spelling and grammar.

But surely if you expect me to have any interest in your “IQ Quiz,” you should at least know when to use “a” and when to use “an”… and that’s as far as I’m going to go in my linguistic analysis of this ad. Otherwise my brain might fall out.


Beaconicity? A non-word? C’mon now…

As an editor, I am firmly opposed to using a five-syllable word when there’s a perfectly good one- or two-syllable one that says exactly what you mean, especially when it can make your meaning less clear.

So I offer my enthusiastic congratulations to the Local Government Association, a group that represents city councils in the UK, for their recent banning of 100 “non-words” that have recently cropped up in bureaucratic correspondence, but that baffle the general population — the very people these local councils are meant to serve.

Here’s an article from The Guardian that explains the move, and contains these insightful words from the association’s chairman:

Why do we have to have ‘coterminous, stakeholder engagement’ when we could just ‘talk to people’ instead?

Here’s a list of the top ten terms – with plain-English translations — from The Telegraph.  My favourite?

Predictors of Beaconicity: Signs that a council may win an award

Of course. Who wouldn’t have understood that?

Throw in one more comma and it’s done…

Why must people do things like this to signs?


Four commas, and not a one of them used correctly. If you’re going to invest in a sign, I highly recommend splurging on a proofreader!