Wednesday, April 11, 2007

We Know Who We'd Send to Detention

SPOGG scout Viktoria V. sends this error from Indiana. It's a description of a home-detention program for good criminals, apparently. But it contains a goof that would cause the grammar police to reach for their red pens and handcuffs:
The Home Curfew program is designed as a reward for individuals who have displayed the ability to follow every aspect of the Home Detention program for
at lease 45 days. In order to be eligible for Home Curfew one must show a strong adherence to the rules and regulations, make a consistent effort in paying fees, and are recommended by their respective field officer.

Here is a direct link to the offense:

It is under the title, “Home Detention Curfew Program.”

That should be "at least."

And while we're at it, can we say how much we hate the word "individuals" as a synonym for "people"? It's not ungrammatical, but it's pompous. We hate pomposity, which is why we didn't put "whom" in our headline even though strict grammar rules call for it. There is such a thing for having an ear for informal usage, and we applaud that sensibility.

Here's how we'd rewrite that paragraph to strip away the oleaginous pomposity, if we may indulge in such vocabulary while picking on the very same thing:
The Home Curfew program rewards people who have obeyed the program rules for at least 45 days. To be eligible, you must obey the rules, pay your fees, and earn the recommendation of your field officer.
There. Isn't that better?

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