Published weekly by the Media Council of Kenya

To the Editor
Pen Cop
Off The Beat
Media Review
Media Monitoring
Literary Vignettes
Letter to the Editor
Guest Column
Fact Checking
Fact Check
Editor's Pick
EAC Media Review
Council Brief
Book Review
Edit Template

Proofread, it’s the least you can do as a sub

Proofreading is a responsibility of the writer, long before anyone else sets eyes on a story. Be your first, ruthless editor, they teach journalists. But if a typo or two sneaks through, it must be caught by the subeditor.

Well, a recent story in The Standard zoomed through both layers of gatekeeping, ending up in print with embarrassing typos from top to bottom.

Titled, “Gathoni Wamuchomba: Mt Kenya’s voice of defiance”, the story by Grace Ng’ang’a was immortalised in The Sunday Standard, January 28 print edition.

Over 48 hours after it rolled off the press, nobody had revised the story online, where redemption is thankfully possible.

We combed through the story:

Par 2: “In an exclusive interview with The Standard the vocal MP explains why she has chosen to call out the same government he helped place in power.”

“She”, not “he”.

Par 3: “Wamuchomba, says she has refused to join what she terms the ‘choir’ of her party members as she knew the electorate would suffer.”

Tenses mixed up. No punctuation after “Wamuchomba”.

Par 4: “it is a very controversial act and there are things I couldn’t agree with because I knew if I did, people that I represent would have suffered. I felt like the Kenya kwanza government was insensitive with the people that supported me, I knew what it meant to say yes to that bill (housing tax)’’ she said.

Awful punctuation. The “i” starting the sentence is not capitalised. Last comma in the paragraph should be a semicolon or a full stop. Two full stops are missing at the end, before “she” and after “said”.

Par 5: “The MP said despite public participation which showed that most Kenyans were against some of the key proposals of the bill, she tried reaching out to the parliamentary finance committee chair Kimani Kuria through a letter expressing constituents’ displeasure to the bill but to date she has never recieved a response”

In the middle of a sentence, a comma always precedes “which” and “but”. A comma is missing before and after “Kimani Kuria”. An apostrophe is missing after “constituents”. “Received” is misspelled. And a full stop is missing at the end.

Par 5: “I wrote a letter stating my displeasure I even tried to be heard during the public participation, but I was sidelined,’’ Wamuchomba states.”

Two sentences lumped into one. Again, a comma missing before “but”.

Similar careless typos continued practically throughout the 36-paragraph story.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share this post

Sign up for the Media Observer

Weekly Newsletter

By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy

Scroll to Top