Straight out of the “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em” files, the 2013 Merriam-Webster Dictionary now includes some up-to-this-point common misspellings as acceptable alternative spellings.
New for this year, “loose” and “looser” will be acceptable spellings for “lose” and “loser”, respectively. “Your” will be an acceptable alternate to “you’re,” and “there” will be allowable for “their” and “they’re.” “To” will be a correct substitute for both “to” and “too”, and lastly, apostrophes will be allowed to be added anywhere an ‘s’ might normally be found.
Merriam-Webster’s longtime editor Jim Webster:
“We know that many purists are going to take issue with the actions that we’ve taken, but we believe in the end that this will cut down on the rampant misspellings we now see out there. When it comes down to it, the internet rules, and on the internet most of the people were already ahead of us on this. We’re just following there lead since all of the smartest people have internet connections. See how I already used “there” instead of “their”? You probably didn’t even notice.”
“This is really going to be a net positive for the English language and drastically reduce misspellings across the board. The fact is, most people who know how to use the strictly correct pre-2013 forms will be able to determine meaning through context, anyway. In retrospect, there really was no need for these words to be spelled differently in the first place. It was a real oversight.”
The National Teacher’s Association expressed their disapproval:
“Look. We can’t tell you how many times these kids are whining ‘when are we going to use this ‘math’ stuff in the real world?” but at least we could always point to the dictionary when they asked why we circled half the words on their papers. Now all of those words are magically correct just because a lot of people spell them incorrectly? This is madness.”
But Billy on the internet disagreed:
“I’ve got a lot of social networks to keep up with. Their’s Facebook and Twitter. And now Instagram, to. You keep your fancy spellings to you’re self’s, you loosers. None of my friend’s care and none of they’re friends care, either. This is a grate day for American’s.”
Free Wood Post will be following this story carefully as it develops.