5/24/2008

Can we undo whatever is causing these errors?

Mr. Rewrite figured it was an annoying aberration when an article told of city rules guarding against undo influence. Less than a week later, however, he faces a letter to the editor saying that certain policies have put undo pressure on the food supply.

We need to undo whatever is causing these errors. Perhaps the lack of reading in this country is having an undue influence on the quality of articles.

For the record ...

Undo is a verb meaning to reverse, ruin or destroy, untie, unfasten or open. For example, media mistakes like those above could undo what Mr. Rewrite hopes to accomplish.

Undue is an adjective meaning unwarranted, excessive or inappropriate. For example, some pundits complained during President Bush's recent trip to Saudi Arabia that that country has an undue influence on the fate of the United States.

Dictionary.com says undue also can mean "not owed or currently payable," but Mr. Rewrite thinks that sounds awfully bureaucratic.

Here's more on undo/undue. While those paid to know better do quite well with it, you can enjoy a handful of mistakes courtesy of Google News:

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