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New tag suggestion - Spellcheck NOT used

StarFleet Carl

I'm reading a continuing story on SOL right now that I think this tag might help.

We talk about all the tags that people have problems with on here, that someone might avoid. I'm sort of halfway serious in suggesting the addition of the following tag.

Spellcheck NOT used in writing this story.

Thoughts? Don't get me worng, we all make mitsakes. (Yes, I did that deliberately.) I'm serious, though - I understand that English is not the native language to many on here. But ... damn. We talk about not 1-bombing a story, but if the thing is so hard to read because so many words aren't spelled correctly, it's tough NOT to want to do that.

Replies:   G Younger
richardshagrin

Perhaps "Not Edited" would encompass more of the problems to be avoided. Spell-check is happy to spell correctly the wrong word. One of our author contributors uses sue when he means use. And there is nothing wrong with posts to the forum with those kinds of issues. Stories posted on SOL probably should have someone, probably not just the author, review them for potential problems.

Replies:   REP  Switch Blayde
Ernest Bywater

I'd back the Not Edited tag. However, there are such things as regional English variations which make it hard to tell if it's an editorial issue or a regional variation issue. There's quite a few US authored stories I've read where the authors use the word then instead of than and than instead of then continuously throughout the story. Some place say a quarter 'til two instead of a quarter to two when they mean fifteen minutes before two o'clock, and similar such things that can look like errors to those not familiar with some of the usage variations.

Tw0Cr0ws

Not Edited or Not Proofread would work.

Regional variations are real, but I don't know of anywhere any form of English is used that the word meaning not noisy is quite, just for one example.

Capt. Zapp
Updated:

@Tw0Cr0ws


... the word meaning not noisy is quite...


I can understand this happening due to typing too fast, and since 'quite' is a valid word, spell check won't flag it as an error. This is where having a good proofreader comes in.

As for the story you mentioned in your other post, yeah, that needs some serious help.

edit - correct typo

REP

@richardshagrin

Having someone edit a story doesn't mean the author incorporated any of the editor's changes.

Replies:   richardshagrin
richardshagrin
Updated:

@REP

You are right, but if someone other than the author has looked at it and given the author the chance to mend the howlers, or even some of the homonyms, it is so much easier to read. No names, no pack drill, but some stories can be hard to read even when they are too interesting to abandon.

Switch Blayde

@richardshagrin

Perhaps "Not Edited"


I stopped reading a story recently because of the errors. Yet the author thanked his many editors so he thought it was edited.

awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

I stopped reading a story recently because of the errors. Yet the author thanked his many editors so he thought it was edited.


I've seen too many of those. I sometimes get the impression that stories with more than two editors tend to be of lower quality than those with only one. :(

I'm an experienced editor and proofreader. My stories on SOL are experimental and I don't go the whole nine yards in making them as good as they could be, yet I believe they compare favourably against many stories that have been independently edited, once UK linguistic differences are taken into account.

I'm not sure 'Not Edited', 'Not Proofread' or 'Not Spellchecked' would be appropriate for my stories.

AJ

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@awnlee jawking

I'm not sure 'Not Edited', 'Not Proofread' or 'Not Spellchecked' would be appropriate for my stories.

I agree. Let's tag your stories as you suggested - 'Experimental'.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
Michael Loucks

@Switch Blayde

I stopped reading a story recently because of the errors. Yet the author thanked his many editors so he thought it was edited.


I have a main editor, a proofreader, early readers, AND then a final proofreader before I post to SOL. People STILL find (and report) errors.

:-)

awnlee jawking

@robberhands

Go ahead and make a case to admin for 'Experimental'. How many current stories would qualify? How many authors would use it? Your case would need to be solid to find a place amongst the proliferation of candidates.

AJ

awnlee jawking

@Michael Loucks

So much for my 'too many cooks' theory :(

AJ

robberhands

@awnlee jawking

I thought you'd welcome my support for an 'Experimental' code. It seems I was wrong.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@robberhands

I thought you'd welcome my support for an 'Experimental' code. It seems I was wrong.


I was unsure how serious you were since you eschew smileys. I'd use it if it were there but I don't see a strong case for it and I don't think it's the answer to the other posters' issues.

AJ

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@awnlee jawking

... I don't think it's the answer to the other posters' issues.

I think you misunderstand the 'issue'. No one expects or even wants an answer. Venting frustration is the purpose of this thread.

Vlad_Inhaler

There used to be an option for this but Laz felt it was not working as hoped and dropped it.
The voting had three categories:
- Technical Merit (Spelling, grammar and overall readability)
- Plot (Creativity, storyline and character development)
- Personal Appeal (Story's emotional and/or intellectual impact on you)

I think people tended to give the same votes for all three categories. For myself I thought it was a category too many - "Technical Merit" and "apart from that" would have been enough.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer  Grant
Crumbly Writer

@Tw0Cr0ws

Not Edited or Not Proofread would work.

Too long to work. How about either "unedited" or simply "NoEdit", imposed whether or not the author thinks they've edited the story. Maybe we could implement it for all those authors who never credit a single editor (not even their girlfriends), when posting a story.

But realistically, that last point raises the real problem, how to implement such a tag. No author will label his story's this way, and if it was imposed on a story, surely he's list his mother's step-brother who served as his unofficial 'editor'.

It's a nice idea, but there's no physical way to implement it. As it is, the best you can do is to 1-bomb the clueless idiots (after telling them why they got such a low score), but I wouldn't hold out much hope of it having much of an effect. Especially since so many newbie authors can't find anyone to edit their stories. They want help in cleaning up their stories, but the 'editor assistance' process is overly cumbersome (according to those who've tried to use it most recently).

Replies:   sharkjcw
Crumbly Writer

@Switch Blayde

I stopped reading a story recently because of the errors. Yet the author thanked his many editors so he thought it was edited.

As REP says, there's submitting something to and editor, and then there's actually listening to their advice.

Not only does someone need to use an editor, but finding the right editor can be a lengthy and tedious effort, as you have to weed out the decent advice from those who don't understand grammar any better than you. :(

Crumbly Writer

@Michael Loucks

I have a main editor, a proofreader, early readers, AND then a final proofreader before I post to SOL. People STILL find (and report) errors.

That always happens. It's why so many of us use multiple editors. Since each person reads what they expect to see, rather than considering the actual words on the page, even the best editors miss things, but with several, each can catch what the others miss. But to address awnlee's issue, the ultimate source of the problem is the author himself. You can't blame an editor because an author doesn't recognize sound advice.

Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

Go ahead and make a case to admin for 'Experimental'. How many current stories would qualify? How many authors would use it? Your case would need to be solid to find a place amongst the proliferation of candidates.

'Experimental', to me, means you type an entire novel with NO grammar and NO punctuation because it's supposedly written by a cockroach (excellent book, by the way)! Anything less than that is just an author hoping his work stands apart from everyone else's stories. :(

Crumbly Writer

@Vlad_Inhaler

I think people tended to give the same votes for all three categories. For myself I thought it was a category too many - "Technical Merit" and "apart from that" would have been enough.

I for one, always registered separate votes for each category (when it existed), but for talented authors, for those without much talent, the scores all end up congregating at the extremes anyway.

sharkjcw

@Crumbly Writer

Hey clueless, read what you wrote here
https://storiesonline.net/d/s3/t3931/utterly-unreadable

StarFleet Carl

@Michael Loucks

People STILL find (and report) errors.


There a difference between finding (and reporting) errors because you have the rare or occasional error and having an author plainly state on his blog page he doesn't work with editors and his stories reflect not only that but he doesn't use spell check.

Yes, we all know that if you choose the wrong word, but spell it correctly, you're not going to get that flag. But a simple typo - use instead of sue - is something most people don't have a problem with. I've found dead tree novels with that problem. It's when you see perimetir or knukle that I start to cringe.

Dominions Son

@StarFleet Carl

It's when you see perimetir or knukle that I start to cringe.


Why would you cringe when I see that? How do you even know? :)

Grant

@Vlad_Inhaler

There used to be an option for this but Laz felt it was not working as hoped and dropped it.

The voting had three categories:

- Technical Merit (Spelling, grammar and overall readability)
- Plot (Creativity, storyline and character development)
- Personal Appeal (Story's emotional and/or intellectual impact on you)

I preferred that system, it was much better than the present single score. Unfortunately too many people weren't smart enough to use it properly.

Dominions Son

@Grant

Unfortunately too many people weren't smart enough to use it properly.


Not so much that they weren't smart enough but I would bet most didn't feel competent to judge technical merit and plot. I know that was the case for me.

richardshagrin

@StarFleet Carl

I start to cringe

I no what you mean.

richardshagrin

@Grant

too many people weren't smart enough to use it properly.

The relatively small group of reviewers still get to put a number down for all three, or use N/A.

REP

@Grant

Unfortunately too many people weren't smart enough to use it properly.


We also have a number of people who can't use the current system properly.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@REP

We also have a number of people who can't use the current system properly.

The readers are supposed to rate their personal appreciation of a story. They could only fail to do it properly by accidentally hitting a score they didn't mean to hit.

Replies:   REP
REP

@robberhands

I don't consider rating a story as 10 just because the author expended the time and effort to write and post the story, as one poster stated he does, to be a proper use of the rating system.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@REP

With all due respect to your considerations, they don't hold any significance for someone else's decision how to properly rate a story.

Replies:   awnlee jawking  REP
awnlee jawking

@robberhands

That's a rather inciteful observation ;)

AJ

Replies:   robberhands
REP

@robberhands

That's true. It's just my opinion and others hold different opinions. They act on their beliefs and I on mine.

Replies:   Zom
Keet
Updated:

A lot of non-English readers wouldn't recognize a lot of the spelling mistakes. I'm Dutch and most Dutch are pretty much multi-lingual with English as a required language in school. Looking up a miss-spelled word I mistakingly saw as correct is easy but if it happens too much it takes away from the enjoyment of reading. A story would become unreadable very fast for non-English readers. I don't mind typos like "sue" instead of "use", they are obvious and you can read along. What I do hate is the use of a correct word but with a completely different meaning (but "sounding" the same) then the author intended to just because he either didn't know the correct word or his spelling checker rewrote it to the wrong word. For example "sentence" vs sentient" or using the wrong name for a character. A spell checker will not catch that and might even have caused it. That is why proofreaders and editors are incredibly important. They can catch these kind of mistakes and make a huge difference in the readability of a story. So spell-checked should never be a tag because it says exactly nothing more then that all words are correctly spelled. Almost every word processor can do that on-the-fly.

IF a tag is added I would prefer a check mark that the story is proofread and edited because that can improve the readability of a story tremendously.

Will bad grammar have any effect on the scoring? Only partially I think. There is a major, but unresolvable, flaw with the scoring. If someone stops reading a story for whatever reason he can not score the story at the bottom of the page. You have to skip to the last chapter, go to the bottom, scroll up if there are any reader postings and then you can enter a score. I score every story I finish and every updated serial I follow. I never score a story I abandon. What follows is that I score almost every story Good, Very Good or Great. Less then Good and I will most likely have abandoned the story. For better then Great it would really have to be a Most Amazing Story (pun intended).

robberhands

@awnlee jawking

That's a rather inciteful observation ;)

I'm certain you meant to write 'insightful', otherwise I'd have to suspect you have an inciteful intention on your own.

Replies:   Keet  Vlad_Inhaler
Keet

@robberhands

I'm certain you meant to write 'insightful', otherwise I'd have to suspect you have an inciteful intention on your own.

Now that is exactly the example I could have used in my previous post.

Vlad_Inhaler

@robberhands

I'm certain you meant to write 'insightful',

and I'm pretty sure it was deliberate.

Switch Blayde

@Keet

I actually think people who learn English as a 2nd language are more attune to English grammar than us natives. A girl from Pakistan was a Beta reader for one of my novels. English is her third language (her native language, then Arabic, then English).

I wrote "…than her." She correctly told me it should be "…than she." I actually left it wrong because, to us non-formal English speakers, it sounds better. So where we limp along hearing and speaking English our whole lives, she learned the rules.

Replies:   Keet  awnlee jawking
Switch Blayde

@Keet

I never score a story I abandon.


Which is why Lazeez had to adjust the scores. The scores were too high.

I rarely score a story I abandon because I never know if it will turn out to be a great story at the end. I never thought it was fair to the author. But if I abandon a story because it's unreadable, then I do skip to the end and score it accordingly. The former situation is what the author wrote (plot/appeal). The latter how it's written (technical).

Replies:   robberhands  Keet
robberhands

@Switch Blayde

Which is why Lazeez had to adjust the scores. The scores were too high.

If you seriously believe that, I'd like to know which purpose do you think such an adjustment would serve.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Keet

@Switch Blayde

I wrote "…than her." She correctly told me it should be "…than she." I actually left it wrong because, to us non-formal English speakers, it sounds better. So where we limp along hearing and speaking English our whole lives, she learned the rules.

Very true. And sometimes what sounds better IS better for the story. I don't consider that a mistake.

Switch Blayde

@robberhands

If you seriously believe that, I'd like to know which purpose do you think such an adjustment would serve.


Lazeez said so in his justification for changing the scoring system. The purpose is not to have every story with a score of 9–10.

Replies:   robberhands  Keet
Keet

@Switch Blayde

I rarely score a story I abandon because I never know if it will turn out to be a great story at the end. I never thought it was fair to the author. But if I abandon a story because it's unreadable, then I do skip to the end and score it accordingly. The former situation is what the author wrote (plot/appeal). The latter how it's written (technical).

Perhaps that's the difference between an author and a reader. I don't like to "punish" an author with a bad score because I can't do it any better. After all that same author has spend time and effort to give us that story, even if I didn't like it.

robberhands

@Switch Blayde

The purpose is not to have every story with a score of 9–10.

And to have every story with a score of 8-9 or 7-8 would be better? A simple shift of the score median wouldn't serve any purpose at all.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Keet

@Switch Blayde

Lazeez said so in his justification for changing the scoring system. The purpose is not to have every story with a score of 9–10.

The situation I sketched is not resolved with adjusting the scores. The only way would be a horrible system with scoring after every chapter.
I think adjusting the scores is created mainly to avoid the consistently 1-scoring trolls.

Replies:   Switch Blayde
Switch Blayde

@Keet

I think adjusting the scores is created mainly to avoid the consistently 1-scoring trolls.


That was a later change. The one that dropped the top and bottom 5%.

The change was to spread out scores. I guess like a bell curve in reverse.

Replies:   Keet
Switch Blayde

@robberhands

And to have every story with a score of 8-9 or 7-8 would be better?


It is what it is. We need to accept it.

I believe the old scoring upset Lazeez as much as the new one does authors today. Maybe more. It upset him to see all the scores so high. I guess, to him, it defeated the purpose of scoring. How would a reader use the score to choose a story? Is there really a difference between 9.1 and 9.3?

And remember the TPA scoring? That drove him nuts when he saw TPA scores of 10/10/10, 9/9/9, 8/8/8, … 1/1/1. That's why he finally did away with the TPA. People weren't using it right.

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands
Updated:

@Switch Blayde

It is what it is. We need to accept it.

Yes, we do, and you already named the correct reason for the score adjustment - "The change was to spread out scores."

The higher a story score, the lesser its adjustment, up to a score of 10, which wouldn't be adjusted at all. That's why blaming generally too high scores as the reason for the scoring system simply doesn't fly, and that's all I objected.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

I wrote "…than her." She correctly told me it should be "…than she."


You're right in that only formal English would use that, but who uses formal English these days? In the context of your writing, it's my opinion that you were right originally and she was wrong.

AJ

Replies:   Switch Blayde
awnlee jawking

@robberhands

The higher a story score, the lesser its adjustment


How would a story score of 1 be adjusted?

AJ

Replies:   robberhands
StarFleet Carl

@Keet

Almost every word processor can do that on-the-fly.


That's my point, actually. How is it that stories get posted, regardless of your actual fluency with English, without hitting the spellcheck button? I think most of them use F7. What are you writing and then posting with, Notepad?

Replies:   Zom  Capt. Zapp
Zom

@REP

That's true. It's just my opinion and others hold different opinions.

Nice.

Replies:   REP
paliden
Updated:

Here is the history behind the reasons for the changes in the scoring system.

All these links can be accessed from the Home page (left bottom) under "Lazeez's Blog".

If you follow the links you can read the comments left by various authors.

From past "Lazeez's Corner"

Page 2 – Scoring and Voting System's Upcoming Changes

March 3, 2013

https://storiesonline.org/blog/2013/03/03/scoring-and-voting-systems-upcoming-changes/

Page 2 – Voting system. Again

June 17, 2012

https://storiesonline.org/blog/2012/06/17/voting-system-again/

Page 3 – Scoring Changes Implementation Follow Up

December 30, 2006

https://storiesonline.org/blog/2006/12/30/scoring-changes-implementation-follow-up/

Page 3 – Scoring System Changes Implemented

December 20, 2006

https://storiesonline.org/blog/2006/12/20/scoring-system-changes-implemented/

Page 3 – Expanded Voting Form: Wording and Value Distribution

December 14, 2006

https://storiesonline.org/blog/2006/12/14/expanded-voting-form-wording-and-value-distibution/

ETA: there may be more entries

Zom

@StarFleet Carl

What are you writing and then posting with, Notepad?

Experienced writers using text only apps may not be as uncommon as you think. I know of two who do it. It's pure speculation on my behalf, but perhaps they find the whizbangery to be distracting.

Replies:   Michael Loucks
Capt. Zapp

@StarFleet Carl

What are you writing and then posting with, Notepad?


I don't recall who's blog I was reading the other day, but they said they type their stories directly into SOL's submission page!

Replies:   Dominions Son
Michael Loucks

@Zom

Experienced writers using text only apps may not be as uncommon as you think. I know of two who do it. It's pure speculation on my behalf, but perhaps they find the whizbangery to be distracting.


I use BBEdit on my Mac to do all my editing. Having everything in plain text, UTF-8 encoded, is the easiest way to work with files. BBEdit has powerful search abilities, and if I need something that goes beyond that, I can use the terminal on my Mac to use vim, perl, grep, awk, sed, or a host of other tools.

Mainly, I don't need all the baggage that comes with MS Word (or the OpenOffice, LibreOffice work-alikes) or Pages. A pure text editor is SO much faster (and it does offer spellcheck 'on the fly').

To do my publication, I use Scrivener which easily imports those text files (complete with all the Cyrillic, Swedish, and Japanese text).

REP

@Zom

thanks

Switch Blayde

@awnlee jawking

but who uses formal English these days?


That was my point. As a second language, she learned rules that we don't know or ignore. She was better at grammar than I. (me sound so much better)

Replies:   awnlee jawking
robberhands

@awnlee jawking

How would a story score of 1 be adjusted?

A story score of 1 wouldn't get adjusted.

Do you think 'the lower a story score, the lesser its adjustment' is a contradiction to 'the higher a story score, the lesser its adjustment'?

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Switch Blayde

Personally I think the rule is flawed anyway.

Grammarians reckon that when the 'be' verb is used, it indicates the putative subject and putative object are equivalent, therefore I/you/he/we/you/they should be used for the latter. But in the case of comparisons, it's clear the author does NOT intend for them to be equivalent and it's my opinion that me/you/him/us/you/them should be used instead.

No English native would say, "The Accrington Stanley players are better than we." And people learning English as a second language shouldn't be taught to say that.

AJ

awnlee jawking

@robberhands

'The higher a story score, the lesser its adjustment' implies 'the lower a story score, the greater its adjustment'.

You over-simplified the consequences of a complex algorithm.

AJ

Replies:   robberhands
robberhands

@awnlee jawking

You over-simplified the consequences of a complex algorithm.

I merely stated one of the many aspects of the scoring system. I never intended to write an essay about the complexity of SOL's scoring algorithm.

Dominions Son

@Capt. Zapp

I don't recall who's blog I was reading the other day, but they said they type their stories directly into SOL's submission page!


Most web browsers have built in spell checkers these days.

Replies:   helmut_meukel
Keet

@Switch Blayde

That was a later change. The one that dropped the top and bottom 5%.

The change was to spread out scores. I guess like a bell curve in reverse.

Ah, thanks, I didn't know there were two different changes. Makes sense though.

helmut_meukel

@Dominions Son

Most web browsers have built in spell checkers these days


And mine finds seven(!) misspelled words in the quote above, because it's set to German and there is no easy way to change this setting to English and then back to German.

BTW, the three words not checked as misspelled are:
'in' (same as in German);
'Most' (there exists a german noun 'Most' it's meaning is 'fruit juice', 'must' or 'fruit wine', 'cyder');
'web' (the german verb 'weben' is english 'weave' and "Web diesen Stoff!" translates to "weave this cloth!").

Writing to the forums I try to ignore the built-in spell checker!

HM.

Replies:   sunkuwan
sunkuwan

@helmut_meukel

I have no issues with web browsers while using Grammarly. It automatically switches to English.

G Younger

@StarFleet Carl

I saw this thread and about fell out of my chair laughing. Great idea though.

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