Apostrophe now: Bad grammar and the people who hate it
13 May 2013Last updated at 04:58 ET By Tom de Castella BBC News Magazine Children are again to be subject to a rigorous examination in grammar. But why does it make adults so cross when other adults break the rules? A new grammar and spelling test arrives in primary schools in England this week. It is the first time in a while that such emphasis has been put on grammar. Some of the questions will seem straightforward for many adults, such as where to place a comma or a colon in a sentence. Grammar is not just an educational issue. The research arm of dating site OKCupid looked at 500,000 first contacts and concluded that "netspeak, bad grammar and bad spelling are huge turn-offs". On the other hand, correct use of apostrophes was appealing. Twist Phelan, an American writer who went on 100 online dates in 100 days and later married someone she met online, says grammar is a vital "filter system". Continue reading the main story Try out the new grammar test The wind blew the sign over.
Related: attitudes to language change
• Spelling, punctuation and grammar