Why do you hate spellcheck?

(Hope I spelled that right)
I’ve heard quite a lot of, well, bitching around here (Berkeley) about spellcheck and it’s kin. My city does have an overabundance of intellectuals, but I’ve seen an occasional negative comment even on these lovely boards.
So what’s the problem if the uneducated masses cheat a little?

Those familiar with my posts over the past five years may be skeptical of this claim, but I was once a great speller. Whenever I typed, I meticulously checked my own writing for errors. Then spellchecking came along and started correcting most of the errors for me. As a result, my brain started to slack off, letting the correct spellings of certain common words fade out of my immediate memory. Thus, when I encounter a situation where spellchecking isn’t available (such as this board), I produce errors by dozens and scores. Spellchecking encourages mental laziness.

I don’t have an issue with spelling. Now I’ll have a typo in this post. I do think it’s possible that spellcheck can become such a crutch for some people that they lose their spelling skills, and when they don’t have spellcheck they are lost. I wouldn’t get all snooty about it though.

Spellcheck annoys me (in a nuisance kind of way) because there never seems to be a Canadian English option. This leaves me with the option of selecting either the American or British English option, each of which is going to have words that are not spelled the way Canadians do.

I hate spellcheck because it doesn’t recognize great numbers of words I use.

Even when I teach it words over and over again, I still keep getting the dreaded red wavy line for perfectly normal, noncromulent words like, oh, “phrygian”.

The worst thing was the furious green lines for two identical words in a row. Look, you, you idiotic spawn of a byproduct of a human mind, there’s a comma between them!!! If your creators had had any… oh never mind.

I turned it off. I am much happier without it. I misspell rarely anyhow.

My hatred, actually, is for people who say stuff like “apology (sp?)” … like using it would be the effort equivalent of going uphill both ways in the snow with stumps for feet and a swirling wind so you can’t get any higher off the ground than rolling.

Working in the media has taught me to have a healthy appreciation for spellcheck, but actual respect for dictionaries not written by Microsoft.

Hear, hear, hear!

Crappy Microsoft dictionaries! I disimpact on thy virtual pages!

Tangentially: Am I the only person who thinks Word was written with no intent of being helpful to a writer? How often during dialogue does one person break off a remark, ending in the following sequence: {word} {space} {en dash} {close quote}, or something like "But - ". Try that in Word, you get a hyphen that does not convert to an en dash, followed by an open quote. Perfectly maddening. There is no way to do this in Word short of writing {“But” - }, and then going back to cut and paste the en dash and the spaces inside the close quote, otherwise you get a hyphen and an open quote.

And that is just destructive to a good rollicking write-on. Creatus interruptus. I hate Microsoft products.

Write your replies in Word (I hate that use of that word), then simply C&P to here?
Can’t you get a “deluxe” version, one suited for writers?
I don’t know. I use Appleworks. It’s kinda primitive.

Is there one?? What’s it called???

I have a Mac at home (two actually), and on the ancient one I’ve got WordPerfect, which doesn’t have this annoying feature. Never tried Appleworks. Would you recommend it?

I seem to recall once having a word processor with Canadian English in the spellcheck–granted, this was the school computer at a journalism school, so they probably make sure to have it. Only problem was the option never seemed to stick, and it kept reverting to American. I just ignore the squiggly lines, I know it’s right.

I think people gripe about spell check because it gives people a reason to not need to know how to spell words properly, and there’s enough butchery of the English language to begin with (13375p34k anyone?). Honestly I’ve never had a problem with it–but I’m the type of person who doesn’t make that many spelling mistakes that aren’t immediately caught. I do like it though for stuff I commonly mix up, like ammount, where I always add an extra ‘m’. Having spell check has probably actually helped my spelling, since it points out my common errors for me. But that’s just me. Now if only I could teach myself to type better

I don’t mind spell check, and occasionally use it myself, but what bothers me is that it creates lazy writers. One might want to ensure that a homonym is not sneaking in, but many don’t; or one might typo into a perfectly good word that is completely out of place. The simple face that a sentence passes spell check does not make it a good sentence.

I think I got that idea from a musing by Steven King. He mentioned something along those lines.

Have you tried sacrificing a goat to the relevant deity of the Arcana and trying to disable various “auto-correct” and “auto-format” options?

And don’t get me started on the code designed to help with outlines and indentation. ::burns with rage::

I think i gave up on spell check when i was typing the word well-being, and spell check suggested “well being” (no hyphen). So i changed it. It then suggested changing in back to “well-being” (with the hypen). It then suggested…

I don’t hate spell check. But I do think it encourages laziness. Autocorrect makes “teh” into “the”-- that kind of thing. Or you look at “thier” and see the red line, so you click and it becomes “their.”

The other thing that I don’t like is that it gives you a false sense of security. I’ve read more than one paper I’ve typed and seen sentences where “read” became “red” and I didn’t notice, or “I now this mulch is true”–no, now, know all mean different things, but the spell check may not notice, or really stupid typos–“mulch” for “much” get left or worse, things like “good” and “hood” get switched.

I don’t hate spell check, but some of its suggestions drive me up the wall.

This weekend I was editing a story and:

  • it didn’t believe that “steepled” is a word
  • it didn’t believe that “cryptozoologist” is a word
  • instead of “I wasn’t sure how I felt about that” it suggested I change it to “I wasn’t sure how I felt about those” or even better “I wasn’t sure how I feels about that.” wtf?

It’s useful as long as you a. realize the grammar checker was designed by an apparent half-wit b. pay attention to which spelling you’re picking so you don’t end up with a substitution error.

I don’t hate spell-check (or its bastard cousin, grammar-check), but I do believe that it encourages people to think that they don’t need a proofreader/copyeditor. And that is a bad thing.

I don’t know if this will work for you (as everyone’s process is different), but I’ve been using MS Word for many, many years and learned long ago to simply get all the words out, then worry about things like formatting and en-dashes. :slight_smile:

Spell checker for message board reply boxes. Exploder only.

Spell check is a fine tool-but you don’t let tools operate themselves, do you? I mean, it sounds entertaining to stick a brick on the rider mower throttle and let it do the lawn for you, but it won’t be pretty. Same with spell check. My favorite SC goof is when you spell the wrong word right, so it doesn’t tell you when you’ve just written ‘penis ensued’ on a legal brief.

Sounds to me like a bunch of you people could get together and develop a good system. People who actually use the thing.
One good thing would be the ability to “train” it. That way, it would learn that gabriela’s way of having a “good rollicking write-on” is the right way, and leave her alone. Then she could, as Misnomer suggests, take care of the details after she gets it all out.
I get 10% of gross sales, okay?

I dislike spellcheck because (if I may speak honestly rather than humbly for a moment) I’m a really good speller, so for me it more often tries to change proper names spelled correctly than common words spelled incorrectly.

spellcheck.net for the rest of us. I’ve yet to have issues using it in any browser.