One of the ones that makes my skin crawl is when people use "of" instead of the contraction of "have." For example, "My plants died. I should of watered them before visiting my family for a week."

 

What are some of yours?

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Yes, but not necessarily VERY young.

Language is an evolving thing that is constantly in flux. The English from 100 years ago is slightly different form the English today, and Shakespeare is yet still more different. 

The point of language is to convey meaning, the point of grammar is to detail and pinpoint further meaning. Therefore, so long as meaning is accurately and adequately conveyed, grammar, pronunciation, and articulation are only to beautify the meaning conveyed. Prose and poetry.

 

That being said "A whole nuther" kills me.

I understand your point, but in order to maximize comprehension, it would seem to make sense for everyone to conform to some sort of standard like, oh, standard English. If one person is speaking Cockney rhyming slang and the other is speaking ebonics, it's hard to imagine that much communication could take place.

I tend to agree with Unseen. But what bothers me more than the potential for lessened comprehension is the simple, dumb, lack of awareness of grammar errors. It's fine and valid that people can convey their meaning in non-standard English, but there's a difference, for example, between black people using full-time ebonics in their everyday lives, and a college-educated average Joe dropping "a whole nuther" into their conversation, or a hand-painted sign advertising "orange's for sale", or a blogger writing that the housing market crash "wrecked havoc" on the economy. (It's WREAKED havoc, you donkey!!!)

 

It's the getting it wrong and not noticing/caring that annoys me.

Some people don't understand "standard English" and that even changes. The point is that language isn't made of blocks that stack neatly together like that, yes there are rules and structures to follow but language is a living, breathing thing. Yes, comprehension is important and as long as the person you are attempting to communicate with comprehends your point I see no need to complain.

In the public forum, where multiple parties will be attempting to understand what is said or written it is important to articulate oneself with a form of language that is easily accessible to all those who potentially will be reading or listening but as long as meaning is coherently and accurately conveyed to the purposed audience that is all that matters. So, if I were to write a paper in college I would most certainly use proper English and articulate myself in a way that the prof will not only understand but hopefully grade me well on because the type of thing I am communicating demands such precision and care. However, I and my buddy (see what I did there?) are messaging each other on facebook, I'll prolly not use good grammar and not really care... In fact, we use bad grammars just for fun.

 

It's also fun to go grammar nazi on someones ass though.

I hope your prof would grade off if you made your points, but not in standard academic English, because not only is he judging your comprehension of the subject matter, he's also preparing you for the academic world where presenting a paper that never used capitalization and was full of chat slang, misspellings, grammatical errors, and so one could affect your ability to land the job which would permit you to fully realize your capabilities.

Necessity dictates usage.

If people stopped confusing "breath" and "breathe", I would be very happy.

bath and bathe as well.

Some things that bug me follow: double negatives, double comparatives, and double superlatives. (This is by no means a complete list.)

@David Lee: Not pointless though, IMO, as it establishes the standard for young. (A young child might be five, a young adult might be 20-something, and a young person is really vague.)

"your" instead of "you're" is starting to make my butt hurt.  There's even a difference in pronunciation. That reminds me: "their" "there" and "they're" is almost as bad.

Yeah. Probably these also: to, too, and two - lose, loose.

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