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Man Accused of Vandalizing Ex's Car, Being Bad at Spelling

Who has time for dictionaries when in the throes of passion?

(Newser) - South Carolina's Timothy Trammell is accused of causing hundreds of dollars of damage to his ex-girlfriend's car in an act of revenge. He's not accused of being a champion speller. The Smoking Gun reports a sheriff's deputy says he saw Trammell, 36, last Friday spray-painting the... More »

Spelling Error Gets Woman Busted for Poisoning

It's 'dignity,' not 'dignerty'

(Newser) - Here's one reason you might want to pay attention to your spelling lessons, kids: They may come in handy one day should you ever want to ... poison your husband? Behold, the strange case of Jacqueline Patrick. The 55-year-old British woman tried to fatally poison her husband not once, but... More »

This Woman's Alleged Crimes: Keying Cars, Bad Spelling

Shannon Csapilla keyed 'wore' into friend's car in jealous rage: cops

(Newser) - There's no time to consult a dictionary in the midst of a jealous rage, apparently. Police in Connecticut say they charged a 20-year-old woman with criminal mischief on Thursday after she allegedly keyed the cars of her ex and a former friend but misspelled a key word in the... More »

After the Bee: What Happens to Whiz-Kid Spellers

Former victor likens the Scripps spelling contest to 'Hunger Games'

(Newser) - Tonight we get to see 285 young minds square off in the Scripps National Spelling Bee finals (8pm EDT on ESPN), and meet at least one more member of one of the world's most elite clubs: winners of the bee . Past victors describe to the Guardian the high stakes... More »

Top Journalism School Misspells Own Name on Diplomas

Medill known for tough stance on errors

(Newser) - Northwestern University's journalism school has a very low tolerance for spelling errors—at least those made by students. Make such a mistake on any assignment, and you'll automatically receive a "Medill F," the Chicago Sun-Times reports. Turns out those mistakes aren't so hard to make:... More »

Kid Loses $3K on Jeopardy!— Over Spelling

Calls Lincoln document 'Emanciptation Proclamation'

(Newser) - A 12-year-old from Newtown, Conn., got the right answer at the close of a Jeopardy! episode—but his spelling cost him the $3,000 he'd wagered. Asked what document Abraham Lincoln had called a "fit and necessary war measure," Thomas Hurley III wrote, "What is the... More »

Words Your iPhone Won't Spell-Check: Abortion, Rape

But it will suggest 'abiogenesis': Daily Beast

(Newser) - Got the latest version of iOS on your phone? Don't expect spell-check to help you out when you type "abortiom." After using an iOS 6 simulator, the Daily Beast found iPhones do not offer spelling suggestions for a range of fairly common but controversial words, even when... More »

Spelling Fanatic Brings 'Bomb' to Teachers' Office

Complains of poorly edited online terrorism instructions

(Newser) - Not all terrorists are religious extremists; some, it seems, are spelling extremists. Employees at the Oregon Teacher Standards and Practices Commission had a very strange morning yesterday, when a man walked into the office, plopped a pressure cooker with wires sticking out of it on the counter, and explained that... More »

Ben Franklin Tried to Change Our Alphabet

His phonetic approach never took off

(Newser) - If Benjamin Franklin were alive today, he'd probably be a dynamite texter. As Smithsonian explains, Franklin once designed a phonetic alphabet for the nation because he thought the one in place was too unwieldy. Alas, it never caught on. Some highlights of his "A Reformed Mode of Spelling,... More »

Romney's Latest Typo: Ronald 'Regan'

Former president of 'Amercia'

(Newser) - Remember Ronald Regan? You know, the president of the United States of Amercia during the '80s? The Romney campaign's fourth known misspelling comes via a chart comparing various presidents' approval ratings during May of their reelection years, posted on BuzzFeed . So far, no misspellings on Romney's offical... More »

National Spelling Bee Opens With 'Witticism'

278 participants will be whittled down to 50

(Newser) - The 85th National Spelling Bee is under way. Thirteen-year-old Kevin Lazenby of Opelika, Ala., stepped to the microphone this morning at a convention center outside Washington and correctly spelled "witticism." The 278 participants won local and regional spelling bees to make the Scripps National Spelling Bee. Each gets... More »

How Google's 'Autocorrect' Can Save Your Spelling

Microsoft Word's spell-check: A thing of the past?

(Newser) - Love how Google suggests the right spelling when you type in a search? You're not alone. "Over the past five years, Web browsers have become better at spelling than most humans," writes Will Oremus in Slate . Browsers are even better than Microsoft Word's spell-check, because they... More »

UNC Journalism School Ditches Spelling Test

School bows to technology

(Newser) - You can stop studying those dictionaries, prospective journalism students at UNC, because the school has finally acknowledged the existence of spell check. The University of North Carolina school of journalism has officially retired the spelling portion of the spelling and grammar test all students must take, reports the Daily Tar ... More »

Teacher Uses Robber, Gun to Teach Kids Spelling

Parents shoot down lesson plan

(Newser) - How do you spell G-U-N? That's the lesson a 5-year-old girl brought home, complete with a picture of a pistol-packin' bank robber escaping with a bag of cash. "The first thing I thought was, ‘Oh no no no,’ I don't want you reading it, I... More »

Spelling Bees R Obsolete

Why show off a skill rendered useless by machines?: Alexandra Petri

(Newser) - It’s time again for the Scripps National Spelling Bee—but these days, it’s more “hilarious” than educational, writes Alexandra Petri in the Washington Post . “What better way to announce to the world at large that you have a totally useless and unmarketable skill—besides, I guess,... More »

The Toughest Words at Scripps Spelling Bee

Linguist explains which ones are the trickiest

(Newser) - The 84th annual Scripps National Spelling Bee is under way, and before a winner is crowned on national television tomorrow night, thousands of really obscure words will be tackled by 275 kids ages 8 to 15. Twelve-year-old Kevin Lazenby of Opelika, Ala., kicked off round two today, notes the AP... More »

Oregon Students Can Use Spell Check on Writing Tests

Educators want to take emphasis off typos

(Newser) - Grist for curmudgeons: Oregon students will be able to use spell check on state writing tests next year, reports the Oregonian . The new rule applies only to middle-schoolers and high school students, not to younger kids still presumably mastering the fundamentals. "We are not letting a student's keyboarding skills... More »

Protesters Target 'Illogical Spelling' at Bee

'Enuf is enuf,' say spelling reform advocates

(Newser) - A small group of protesters, some of them dressed in bee costumes, gathered outside the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington DC yesterday to make their case for spelling reform. The protesters, representing the American Literacy Council, say the illogical spelling of the English language is holding back much of... More »

Ditch 'i Before e Except After c' Rule: Brits

Ditty 'not worth teaching,' government says

(Newser) - Generations of frustrated schoolchildren have grumbled that “i before e except after c” isn’t worth learning because of numerous exceptions. Now the British government agrees, the BBC reports. In a document sent to 13,000 primary schools, officials say the ditty “is not worth teaching” because it’... More »

Stanley Cup Could Use Spell Check

(Newser) - As hulking as NHL players may seem on ice, they can be even more daunting to etch in silver, reports the Wall Street Journal in a look at the quirky typos that decorate hockey's storied Stanley Cup. An influx of Eastern European and Scandinavian players has the league's official silversmith... More »

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