Friday, April 10, 2020

spot the errors

Seen in this article:

Falconburg conveyed an apology, however, Mr. Mooney has declined the offer for an in person meeting.

I see at least two errors. Do you see only two errors as well, or do you see more?


Charles said...

"Falconburg conveyed an apology, but Mr. Mooney has declined the offer for an in-person meeting."

The tense issues kind of rub me the wrong way, too, although I don't know if that counts as an error. I think it should all be simple past, though, especially given the previous sentence.

Also, what the hell is wrong with the police?

Kevin Kim said...

There's a lively discussion in the comments to that post about what really happened. There's a video associated with the arrest, but the video apparently doesn't tell the whole story. The police supposedly came to break up a gathering of 12-15 people, and Mooney might not have been part of that group, but the police may have thought he had been.

Now that I look at the sentence a second time, I think that there may indeed be a tense-control issue. Your suggestion to make it all simple-past tense works for me, although it's possible to defend the present-perfect if we think of Mooney's declining the offer of a personal apology as having ripples that go up to the present moment. But that may be a bit of a stretch, and ultimately, I agree with you.

Anyway, the two errors I saw were fairly easy to catch:

1. conjunctive adverb: there ought to be a semicolon after "apology."
2. punctuation: it should be "an in-person meeting." (hyphenate phrasal adj.)

The "too" you wrote—in the phrase "rubs me the wrong way, too"—seems to imply that you wrote a comment before this one. Did you? If so, I didn't see it. Or were you saying "too" in the sense of "in addition to the two easily visible errors"?