So what gets us PR folks’ knickers in a twist? Of course I could name a few… But one of the biggest bug bears has to be grammatical errors. More specificity, the incorrect use of an apostrophe. *Grits teeth*
More often than not the proper use of the apostrophe is sadly neglected, stowed away in the shiny punctuation closet along with many other common symbols which fall victim to the punctuation abusers amongst us.
Warning. The misuse of apostrophes results in sore eyes.
Rather than insult your intelligence and assume you’re not all grammar geniuses, we’ll go with assuming we are novices – I suggest a kind reminder of the golden rules of apostrophe usage could be helpful here.
Rule 1. Plural? More than one? Surely you use an apostrophe… NO!
The most frequent of mistakes – the apostrophe is a cheeky devil. It is ‘Apples’ NOT ‘Apple’s’.
This has to be my biggest pet peeve.. Just because it ends in an ‘S’ doesn’t mean it needs an apostrophe! If you don’t have the licence to correctly use a ‘, please save our eyes from the sore mistake!
Rule 2. Indicating a possession? Go for it, use an apostrophe.
Rule 3. It’s okay to relax and shorten words; an apostrophe is often the gem which allows you to do so. ‘Can’t, don’t, wouldn’t’ – straightforward examples of contractions. Great. And then we have ‘it’s’. Again a great way to abbreviate ‘it is’ or ‘it has’. However, this appears to confuse many…
YES abbreviate, sometimes whack on a ‘ , BUT please do not use it to indicate possession. ‘Spain is known for it’s great beaches’. No. It is not. Clare Hitchings, director of stag communications and co-founder of @ApostrophePC shares a classic example of this common apostrophe fail.
Seriously?! Oops. This is not good for a business’ reputation surely! I wonder whether great taste is on it way after this is spotted!
Follow Clare and @ApostrophePC on their mission, share some grammar fails and join the pledge to protect the apostrophe.
And no… We will not join you for ‘Dunkin Doughnut’s’ after this read. ‘Dunkin Doughnuts’ ? Then maybe it’s a date.
Spotted a Apostrophe Catastrophe? Then let us know!