Dear Stonehearthians (did we ever decide on an official name for ourselves?),
After some deliberation and hesitation on whether or not to make this particular forum game I’ve had in mind, I’ve finally decided to just go ahead with it. So here it is: Grammar Knights Unite!
Unfortunately, because I’m a grammar nazi knight, I could not make that title rhyme.
When I browse the Internet, I am usually struck with an almost irresistable urge to correct everyone’s language. I have thus far been able to cope by taking some deep breaths and focusing on the contents of the text in question when this occurs. However, I thought it would be a nice idea to create a place where people can freely point out mistakes in other posters’ language. And thus, the idea for this game was born.
I expect many visitors will be quite uninterested in this one. If that is the case, just click away I suppose, and feel free to shake your head at me for being silly enough to even propose such a thing.
- There is no set topic of conversation. Within the rules of the forum at large and common sense, of course, the posts can be about whatever topic interests the poster(s).
- Try to have your language be as correct as you can.
- Correct language errors wherever you find them.
- Correct grammar, spelling and punctuation, and quibble over stylistic choices, although those are more subjective and should ultimately be seen as such.
- You are allowed to use informal language and generally adhere to the linguistic principle of “description over prescription”: ending your clauses in prepositions, using “who” rather than “whom”, etc. These have already fully become accepted into everyday language, and so are entirely fine in this game. However, if you prefer to stick with the more traditional, formal rules, that is not a problem either.
- Use English as the main language, as it is our lingua franca, but feel free to use whichever dialect of English you like. So, don’t correct a person on the dialect they use (e.g., British English versus American English), but feel free to argue against inconsistent use of dialects if you like.
- If English is your second language (as it is mine), and/or it may not be as good as that of native/fluent speakers, this may seem like it’s not your type of game. However, you are still free to participate if you so desire. The point of the game is not to make those who make language errors feel inadequate; the point is to teach each other about the rules of the English language while discussing these rules and whatever else we like (again, within reason!), while giving an outlet to grammar-knightly inclinations for those afflicted with such. If you still have some problems with English, that just means there’s more for you to learn. Just do the best you can, that’s all anyone can ask. There is no winning or losing.
- Most importantly: Be friendly and avoid being confrontative, both in correcting each other’s language, and responding to corrections made to your language, even if you feel these corrections are wrong. I know that sometimes, these sorts of things can be taken personally; however, given that correcting language is the whole point of this game, and people are aware of this coming in, it is my hope that such problems will be kept to a minimum here.
Now, with that out of the way, let’s get into the actual conversation. Of course, at this point I am immediately incapable of coming up with anything to talk about. Uh… who else loves cats?
Okay, how about this? For anyone interested in (Dutch) birds, I’ve created a flashcard list to study their sounds and appearance, as well as (later on) their taxonomy. It uses the SRS (spaced repetition system) known as Anki and is available here. Feedback is, of course, very welcome, both here and on the site in question (where it might help me get the deck noticed more).
Any other birders around?