Confession is good for the soul.
We like to post funny typos from other people's publications, just for laughs, just for the snarky joy of it, but not out of some mean-spirited schadenfreude. Hey, we make plenty of mistakes of our own, so there is no joy in Mudville when a fellow editor or writer screws up in print. The sad reality today is that too many newspapers, newsletters, magazines, and book publishers are getting by short-staffed, overworked, and underpaid. Blame the economic downturn and fierce competition from the Internet for advertising dollars and readers' eyeballs. Furloughs and layoffs decimate the ranks of print media editorial personnel.
So when you see the kinds of goofs we love to make fun of, it is not to say that the hardworking skeleton crews producing these barely surviving publications are incompetent. Far from it. These are trained and educated professional journalists, writers, and editors. But they just don't have the resources to do everything needed. Most of them scramble to make their deadlines and fill their pages with reasonably decent content, but budget cuts have eliminated the proofreaders and copy editors—guardians of the English language. I ought to know; I am one of them.
Corporate greed has a role in this, of course, and we deplore publishers who gut the editorial staff to make their bottom line and enrich their shareholders. But while we assign blame, let's not forget that the reading public simply does not support print media as it used to. Do you buy or subscribe to newspapers and magazines? Do you buy books? Do you advertise in print media?
EDITOR & PUBLISHER