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#262555 - Wed Mar 23 2005 09:16 AM Creative Spelling
shady_shaker Offline
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Registered: Sat Jul 19 2003
Posts: 246
Loc: Brisbane QLD Australia      
I have just completed two quizzes where the authors used a good degree of creative spelling when referring to prominent individuals. In one of them, President James Buchanan became President James Buchannon! Surely such obvious mistakes should be detected when editors are checking quizzes for correctness. I realise that editors are volunteers, and that overall, they do a great job. But I find it annoying that quizzes DO go online, with glaring errors like this.

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#262556 - Wed Mar 23 2005 10:04 AM Re: Creative Spelling
Leau Offline
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Registered: Sun Jun 16 2002
Posts: 5337
Loc: Nijmegen/Brisbane
I assume you sent a correction note when you spotted those errors?
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#262557 - Wed Mar 23 2005 10:12 AM Re: Creative Spelling
crisw Offline
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Registered: Mon Feb 21 2000
Posts: 5745
Loc: California USA
Two more points-

The quiz may have gone online years ago, when editing standards weren't as strict.

The person who edited the quiz may not have been American, and thus may not have recognized the spelling as incorrect.

And yes, I also hope you sent a correction note! Editors are human; things do get past us sometimes.
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#262558 - Wed Mar 23 2005 10:57 AM Re: Creative Spelling
Leau Offline
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Registered: Sun Jun 16 2002
Posts: 5337
Loc: Nijmegen/Brisbane
I'll admit that I had never heard of a president called Buchanan until I read your post, serendipity. And if Cris hadn't mentioned the US I still wouldn't have had any idea what country he was president of! So obviously I wouldn't have been able to tell that the spelling was incorrect... And yes, I am an editor.
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#262559 - Wed Mar 23 2005 05:11 PM Re: Creative Spelling
ladymacb29 Offline
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Registered: Wed Mar 15 2000
Posts: 15846
Loc: The Delta Quadrant
And yet another point... Sometimes an author will change a quiz even after the quiz has gone online (which they really shouldn't do unless absolutely necessary). I've had cases where an author will get a correction notice from a player. The author will go 'oh, ok' and change their quiz. Problem is, the player was actually wrong, the author was right in the first place and now the author has actually *put* an error in their quiz.
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#262560 - Wed Mar 23 2005 09:42 PM Re: Creative Spelling
gemini19 Offline
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Registered: Tue Feb 15 2005
Posts: 2399
Loc: Toronto Ontario Canada      
Quote:

I've had cases where an author will get a correction notice from a player. The author will go 'oh, ok' and change their quiz. Problem is, the player was actually wrong, the author was right in the first place and now the author has actually *put* an error in their quiz.




I've actually had this happen to me a few times, and the problem with this is that (especially with the quizzes in the tv category) the episode may not have been taped, or the author picked their questions by watching several episodes and taking a couple of questions from each. If they haven't taped the episode[s], there's no way the quiz author can double check whether the player is actually correct. In other cases, authors might simply think it's easier to just post the correction the player suggested rather than go back and double check. The thing that I hate is when you post a correction yourself, knowing 100 percent that you're correct, and the quiz author just ignores the correction. That aggravates me to no end.

Quote:

I realise that editors are volunteers, and that overall, they do a great job. But I find it annoying that quizzes DO go online, with glaring errors like this.




From my own personal experience in Quizzyland, I believe that some editors are just a lot more thorough than others. Beth is really good at what she does, she catches just about everything. The same goes for cris. Other editors just may not be as fine tuned yet.
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#262561 - Wed Mar 23 2005 09:42 PM Re: Creative Spelling
dg_dave Offline
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Registered: Sun Oct 05 2003
Posts: 23196
Loc: near Stafford, Virginia USA  
Quote:

I'll admit that I had never heard of a president called Buchanan until I read your post, serendipity. And if Cris hadn't mentioned the US I still wouldn't have had any idea what country he was president of! So obviously I wouldn't have been able to tell that the spelling was incorrect... And yes, I am an editor.




I bet as an editor you guys are supposed to know everything, and I don't know of anyone like that. Some will know the US presidents, just like others may know every prime minister of Australia or the UK. The editors have a lot to do, and without them, this site would not be as great as it is. They are all volunteers, and they all have lives outside of FT.

Keep it up editors, let's make this the best trivia site ever (if it isn't already )
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The way to get things done is NOT to mind who gets the credit for doing them. --Benjamin Jowett
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. --Eleanor Roosevelt
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#262562 - Wed Mar 23 2005 10:07 PM Re: Creative Spelling
MotherGoose Offline
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Registered: Mon Apr 22 2002
Posts: 4753
Loc: Western Australia
Re: "...let's make this the best trivia site ever (if it isn't already..."

What do you mean IF?! ( )
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#262563 - Wed Mar 23 2005 11:10 PM Re: Creative Spelling
Bruyere Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Sat Feb 10 2001
Posts: 18783
Loc: California USA
Time and time again I warn people gently that they really must put their work through a spellchecker before getting it transferred to our templates. Once it is in there, errors are much harder to spot.

What we try to avoid is questions that are going to generate endless debate and correction notes though they might technically be right. However, we have quite a time getting people to believe this.
I always think 'what if I were taking this with basic knowledge of this subject, what would I assume you meant?'
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#262564 - Thu Mar 24 2005 02:13 AM Re: Creative Spelling
Leau Offline
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Registered: Sun Jun 16 2002
Posts: 5337
Loc: Nijmegen/Brisbane
Quote:

The thing that I hate is when you post a correction yourself, knowing 100 percent that you're correct, and the quiz author just ignores the correction. That aggravates me to no end.




It shouldn't be possible for an author to ignore a correction note. Every correction note is read by an editor. If an author claims that they've corrected the reported error, an editor will check if they indeed fixed what they claim to have fixed. Editors also read and judge the "not an error" reasons. If no action is taken at all upon receiving a correction note, eventually a quiz might be taken offline, depending on the type of error. This whole process could take some time though, some categories get tons of correction notes, others not as many.
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#262565 - Thu Mar 24 2005 04:22 AM Re: Creative Spelling
Nemesis Offline
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Registered: Fri Mar 11 2005
Posts: 300
Loc: Manchester
England UK     
Quote:

If no action is taken at all upon receiving a correction note, eventually a quiz might be taken offline,



Leau how long would an author have to leave an un-seen to error, before it gets taken off line? Is that only if the person has been online frequently after the error has been sent? I'm just curious as to what would happen if someone sent me an error and I (as I do quite often) don't go on the site for a month or so.
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#262566 - Thu Mar 24 2005 04:40 AM Re: Creative Spelling
shady_shaker Offline
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Registered: Sat Jul 19 2003
Posts: 246
Loc: Brisbane QLD Australia      
I sent no correction note! Why should I? The quiz maker chose to ask a question about James Buchanan. His or her responsibity was to ensure that details relating to that individual were accurate. They knew enough about him to know he was the first, and so far only, bachelor President of the United States, yet they failed to take the elementary step of verifying the correct spelling of his name! As for editors being unfamiliar with the names of American Presidents. All I would say in answer to that is, that if you are an editor checking a quiz that includes questions in a particular category, then it's YOUR JOB to ensure that every morsel of information in that quiz is accurate! The editor of the relevant quiz obviously failed to familiarise themselves with the names of US Presidents. They assumed that the person submitting it, would have done that. They were wrong. One can only guess at the number of times similar assumptions have been made, and the number of times editors have been similarly wrong.

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#262567 - Thu Mar 24 2005 04:51 AM Re: Creative Spelling
Nemesis Offline
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Registered: Fri Mar 11 2005
Posts: 300
Loc: Manchester
England UK     
Maybe the author was dyslexic or something and just couldn’t see the error they made. Please don't forget that the voluntary editors have to look through hundreds of quizzes, you can't expect them to see every single mistake. Also it’s possible that if the editor wasn't American that Buchannon is a variant spelling of Buchanan. If you do see an error in a quiz you should either send a message to the quiz author or if it didn't affect your enjoyment of the quiz/ you couldn't be bothered just let it slide but don't complain that the editors are doing a bad job as crisw said "Editors are only human"
It's everyone’s duty to make sure that the quizzes on this site are as accurate as possible.


edited to correct spelling mistake


Edited by Nemesis (Thu Mar 24 2005 04:57 AM)
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#262568 - Thu Mar 24 2005 05:03 AM Re: Creative Spelling
McGruff Offline
Star Poster

Registered: Mon Apr 03 2000
Posts: 10832
Loc: Northumberland Virginia USA 
Editors don't have the time to check every single bit of information. One would assume the quiz author would check something like the spelling of a president's name before asking a question about him, but unfortunately there are a lot of quiz authors who think they can just slap something together and get it online. A spell checker won't recognize a misspelled surname. With editors from all over, we can't expect them to know everything. We have the "Report an error" function so that the players who spot an error have an opportunity to get it corrected. It's the best way to bring a mistake back to the attention of an editor, and in the case of President Buchanan, the editor will then be aware of it should it happen again.


Edited by McGruff (Thu Mar 24 2005 05:05 AM)

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#262569 - Thu Mar 24 2005 06:23 AM Re: Creative Spelling
shady_shaker Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Sat Jul 19 2003
Posts: 246
Loc: Brisbane QLD Australia      
Why have editors check quizzes for acuracy at all then if: "there are a lot of quiz authors who think they can just slap something together and get it online"? AND in at least some cases, it would seem, manage to do so! Perhaps suggesting that editors should ensure the accuracy of ALL information submitted in a quiz is unreasonable. However, in this instance, the basic data central to the individual about whom the quiz maker was posing the question was wrong. And it is immaterial whether the editor involved was an American citizen or not. They should have checked the accuracy of such important information.

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#262570 - Thu Mar 24 2005 07:22 AM Re: Creative Spelling
agony Online   content

Administrator

Registered: Sat Mar 29 2003
Posts: 14394
Loc: Western Canada
Quizzyland has evolved over time, and systems are put into place as we grow, and find new problems. At present, the way the system is set up is for the editors to check that quizzes follow the rules of Funtrivia, that spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors are caught as well as possible, and that any errors of fact that the editor may be aware of are found before the quiz goes online. We have to have a certain amount of trust that authors know what they are talking about, otherwise no quizzes would go online. I am an editor in the Literature, Music and Theatre categories. Must we only allow quizzes on books that I have read, and shows that I have seen?
I order to deal with the inevitable problems inherent in this system, we have the correction system. Players who find errors of fact, and such errors in spelling, etc, that slip through, must send correction notices. If they don't the whole thing ceases to work. An error on the spelling of a surname strikes me as an error of fact, as, surely, there are people in this world who spell their names that way, they have just never been US Presidents. Although I know that many US citzens think that knowledge of early American Presidents is common knowledge, in a worldwide context, it is not.
So,it seems to me that the editors in this case have done their jobs, but perhaps you didn't do yours. Again, if players don't send corrections, errors will stay online. If this doesn't matter to you, fine. But, if it does, please send those corrections.

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#262571 - Thu Mar 24 2005 07:22 AM Re: Creative Spelling
Leau Offline
Forum Champion

Registered: Sun Jun 16 2002
Posts: 5337
Loc: Nijmegen/Brisbane
If you can't be bothered to send a correction note when you're obviously so upset by the error you spotted, then I don't see why you'd complain about the editors. If you want the quizzes to be without errors, then make the first step yourself!
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#262572 - Thu Mar 24 2005 08:00 AM Re: Creative Spelling
gtho4 Online   FT-blank
Administrator

Registered: Sun Dec 26 1999
Posts: 49178
Loc: Sydney oz downunder           
Posted by serendipity70:
    >> Wed Mar 23 2005 09:16 AM
    >> I have just completed two quizzes where the authors used a good degree of creative spelling when referring to prominent individuals. In one of them, President James Buchanan became President James Buchannon! Surely such obvious mistakes should be detected when editors are checking quizzes for correctness. I realise that editors are volunteers, and that overall, they do a great job. But I find it annoying that quizzes DO go online, with glaring errors like this.


    >> Thu Mar 24 2005 04:40 AM
    >> I sent no correction note! Why should I? The quiz maker chose to ask a question about James Buchanan. His or her responsibity was to ensure that details relating to that individual were accurate. They knew enough about him to know he was the first, and so far only, bachelor President of the United States, yet they failed to take the elementary step of verifying the correct spelling of his name! As for editors being unfamiliar with the names of American Presidents. All I would say in answer to that is, that if you are an editor checking a quiz that includes questions in a particular category, then it's YOUR JOB to ensure that every morsel of information in that quiz is accurate! The editor of the relevant quiz obviously failed to familiarise themselves with the names of US Presidents. They assumed that the person submitting it, would have done that. They were wrong. One can only guess at the number of times similar assumptions have been made, and the number of times editors have been similarly wrong.

    >> Thu Mar 24 2005 06:23 AM
    >> Why have editors check quizzes for acuracy at all then if: "there are a lot of quiz authors who think they can just slap something together and get it online"? AND in at least some cases, it would seem, manage to do so! Perhaps suggesting that editors should ensure the accuracy of ALL information submitted in a quiz is unreasonable. However, in this instance, the basic data central to the individual about whom the quiz maker was posing the question was wrong. And it is immaterial whether the editor involved was an American citizen or not. They should have checked the accuracy of such important information.
Here are a few facts for you to chew over, and consider:
  1. you're throwing around unsubstantiated accusations like confetti. On what basis did you decide that the quiz, as you saw it, as you played it, was how it looked when an editor placed it online? Can you see something I can't? Any author can alter a quiz after it goes online.
  2. where on this site does it state that every quiz is accurate, or that the job of an editor is to ensure it is accurate?
  3. some stats: there are 57,608 quizzes online, and 7,500 +/- quizzes offline (under construction, or previously online but taken offline by the author or by an editor). From the day Quizzyland commenced, until this morning, 204,410 quizzes have been written.
  4. in other words, only 28.18% of quizzes written have made it online. I've tracked this stat every quarter since June 03, and it is remarkably consistent: minimum 28.07%, maximum 28.12%.
  5. the missing 139,302 quizzes were submitted by authors and rejected, or abandoned by their authors (in either case, they no longer exist). Would you like to have a look at the dribble we had to read, and reject? If you did, you'd be throwing bouquets at us, rather than bricks.
  6. there are many sites on the net which accept quizzes, but they're automated; and accept anything and everything. FT is one of the few sites that examine/read/look at/vet/edit quizzes before they go online (and, furthermore, requires an explanation for each answer). FT may be the only one that's not automated but, as I don't visit many others, I wouldn't know.
  7. this arrived in my Mailbox a few years ago from an author, after I rejected his or her masterpiece: "I want my quiz online now, there's no need to read it -- no-one at xyx.com reads my quizzes"
Do you recognise this jingle?
It's the fish that John West reject, that makes John West the best.

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#262573 - Thu Mar 24 2005 10:12 AM Re: Creative Spelling
dg_dave Offline
Champion Poster

Registered: Sun Oct 05 2003
Posts: 23196
Loc: near Stafford, Virginia USA  
Considering the number of quizzes on FT currently, I believe the editors do a great job. Besides, my signature line sums this up. What I mean by water in the line, is like the top of a pond, lake, ocean, etc.

There is a line from a song done by the Human League, and it reads:
"I'm only human, of flesh and blood, a man." I realize it's not politically correct to say that, but it is part of the quote. That is exactly what the editors are; they're not perfect, nor do they claim to be. I think they do a wonderful job keeping very high standards, and that is why I do not go to any other trivia sites. I don't even know of any other trivia sites anyway, I'm hooked here!

Keep up the great work editors!
_________________________
The way to get things done is NOT to mind who gets the credit for doing them. --Benjamin Jowett
No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. --Eleanor Roosevelt
The day we lose our will to fight is the day we lose our freedom.

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#262574 - Thu Mar 24 2005 10:48 AM Re: Creative Spelling
MotherGoose Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Mon Apr 22 2002
Posts: 4753
Loc: Western Australia
Quiz-players are an important source of feedback and are vital in helping to ensure quizzes are as accurate as possible. Quiz-players are just as important as editors.

If an error bothers you sufficiently to start a post about it, why on earth would you not send a correction note? This makes no sense to me.
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#262575 - Thu Mar 24 2005 05:33 PM Re: Creative Spelling
ladymacb29 Offline
Moderator

Registered: Wed Mar 15 2000
Posts: 15846
Loc: The Delta Quadrant
Quote:



If an error bothers you sufficiently to start a post about it, why on earth would you not send a correction note? This makes no sense to me.




Ok, I was going to reply, but MotherGoose's reply said it all.

All right, you twisted my arm to say something original. If the editors were to fact-check every quiz, why would we bother looking at other people's quizzes? We'd be off writing our own and actually getting the recognition for it.
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#262576 - Thu Mar 24 2005 07:56 PM Re: Creative Spelling
shady_shaker Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Sat Jul 19 2003
Posts: 246
Loc: Brisbane QLD Australia      
Nothing like criticising the standard of editing to get the bees buzzing around one's head! In my original post I said that overall, editors do a great job. And, in retracting something that I'd said earlier, I later acknowledged that editors cannot be expected to check every last detail of a quiz. As I've said at least twice before, the quiz in question here had a question relating to a President of the United States, in which the creator of the quiz did NOT bother to check the correct SPELLING of his name! If they had, they would have spelt his name CORRECTLY. From time to time, I find incidental errors in quizzes for which I send appropriate messages. But I'm blowed if I'm going to alert anyone to a mistake caused by their obvious failure to check their facts!

This has NOT been a personal attack on editors. I know that you guys do a great job, but you are not above criticism! An editor somewhere, and at some time, did NOT check a basic detail provided by a quiz maker! As a result that quiz was allowed to go online.

Rejection notices have come back directing my attention to such vitally important errors as a surfeit of exclamation marks (!!!). Pity greater diligence wasn't paid to mere trivialities - like the correct spelling of the names of American Presidents!

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#262577 - Thu Mar 24 2005 08:40 PM Re: Creative Spelling
damnsuicidalroos Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Mon Feb 10 2003
Posts: 2167
Loc: Sydney
NSW Australia
Hahaha. This thread has caused me to ponder the question of spilling much. The only answer I can see is to create a new position in Funtrivia, "Official Funtrivia Funded Spillchecker" [OFFS for short]. The position would entail remedying any errors that spill over the current checking process into passed quizzes that could spell disaster for the site.
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#262578 - Thu Mar 24 2005 08:48 PM Re: Creative Spelling
Chris1013 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: Sat Oct 04 2003
Posts: 406
Loc: SW London
England UK
Serendipity, I think I know what you're saying, but unfortunately I can't agree with you.

In my opinion it is the quiz maker's job to ensure, that vital pieces of the quiz, such as names of people and places, are spelled correctly.
Just imagine how long it would take the editors to check every name in every single quiz. They have to trust the quiz maker that they have done their research properly!
(Just out of curiosity: How long does it usually take to edit a 10 question quiz?)

I'm not saying that my quizzes are perfect when I submit them. I still do have typos or grammatical mistakes in them sometimes (despite proof reading and spell check). But I as a quiz maker actually take pride in submitting the best quiz I can create, and that includes providing correct information and correct spelling!
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#262579 - Thu Mar 24 2005 09:51 PM Re: Creative Spelling
rj211 Offline
Multiloquent

Registered: Mon Jun 04 2001
Posts: 3313
Loc: Los Angeles
California USA
Serendipity-
I think a lot of us are just confused about why you've posted here. You seem to be just complaining, without any idea of a specific change you'd like to see take place. Because you don't want to send a correction on the quiz to actually solve that error, we see this post as just an opportunity to complain publicly about a perceived injustice. Is there something in particular that you think the editors could (realistically) do that would put your mind at ease?

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