Sunday, August 26, 2007

The Lingering Death of the New York Times

There was a time, maybe, before blogs, even before the Internet, when the New York Times could be held up as a standard, if not the standard, for good grammar. After all, it was one of the most popular papers to write for, so good writers would contribute articles, and good editors would read those articles, so subscribers would have reading material that was not only accurate and true, but wouldn't have any comma splices or dangling participles.

I miss those days.

"Ottawa may have been unfairly branded as boring, but exploring Parliament Hill (Wellington Street; 613-239-5000; is anything but." -- 36 Hours Ottawa, NYT, August 26, 2007 (Travel). (My italics.)

But what? Boring? Branded as boring? Unfairly branded as boring? Maybe it's branding all the other places in Ottawa as boring? Or doing so unfairly?

I hear that William Safire is semi-retired. Maybe he has time to scan the Travel articles before they find their way into print.


Mark Bennett said...

Why'd you stop posting? Is the world of grammar in such good condition that it can do without you?

Michael said...

That's exactly why. Or because my private life got busier than it's been for awhile. Or maybe I just realized there are so many holes in the grammatical dikes, and I've only got so many fingers.


Thanks for commenting. I'll try to do better.