December 8 to December 14, 2012
Last week, Twitter, Google and Facebook released year-end reviews using data from their users revealing world search trends and memes. Also, we saw Manny Pacquiao suffer a sixth-round knockout to Juan Manuel Marquez, and that image of Pacquiao echoed through social media and sparked a meme hours after the match. Meanwhile, the Associated Press banned the use of “homophobia” based on technicality, and NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg hinted on his interest to buy the Financial Times. Other stories in the lineup: Jack Reacher author Lee Child’s advice on creating suspense and using editing prompts.
2012 in Review
Before the year (or the world) ends, your favorite websites released their versions of 2012’s highlights.
Google’s Zeitgeist revealed search trends and most searched topics worldwide based on an analysis of over one trillion search queries throughout the year.
Twitter used “both editorial and data signals” to present defining tweets of the year. 2012 Year on Twitter revealed Barack Obama’s victory tweet as the year’s most retweeted. Also, Twitter partnered with Vizify to let users generate their own Year on Twitter review. Check out Project Chiron’s year on Twitter here.
Facebook Stories released a similar feature allowing users generate their own 2012 in review with their “20 biggest moments.” The latest issue of Stories also listed trends from several countries and revealed TBH, YOLO and KONY as the year’s top memes in the U.S.
Bloomberg and the Financial Times
Michael Bloomberg, mayor of New York City and the 10th richest person in the Forbes 500 list, is ogling at the Financial Times and expressing interest in buying the newspaper. Despite owning 90 percent of the giant media company that bears his name, the 70-year-old Bloomberg appears to be wanting for some more. Does Michael Bloomberg really need to own more of the media, though? Maybe the mayor just wants something to keep him busy when his term ends in 2013. The big question is: Is FT for sale?
The Associated Press Bans Homophobia
For a greater level of clarity and specificity, the AP Stylebook will ban the use of “homophobia” in political or social contexts starting next year, arguing that the word – not the mental illness – stems not from logic or reason, but from “mere repugnance” that it is often “the result of speculation.” The Associated Press explained that its suffix, “-phobia”, betrays its origin as a technical psychological term with all the improper usage in our daily meanderings.
Similar to Twitter bot @YourInAmerica, which shames users who don’t know the difference between “your” and “you’re,” Nate Fanaro’s @CapsCop retorts to tweeps who are gung-ho over the caps lock button to keep it down as no one in Twitter can hear their scream embodied through large blocks of letters. Fanaro designed an automated account that finds people who tweet in all caps and fires a correction back at them, oftentimes in the form of sarcasm. And while the 30-year-old prankster admits that grammar in Twitter is much ado about nothing, he religiously allocates a large chunk of his time reminding Tweetizens with his arsenal of preset, sarcastic puns to keep it down despite numerous hate mail and threats crowding his inbox.
The vicious right jab that sent the world’s best pound-for-pound fighter out cold on the canvas set a new trend over the social media not because of the huge upset but because of how planking immediately became a thing of the past. Instagram users were quick to upload their own rendition of Manny Pacquiao’s limp body after Juan Manuel Marquez knocked him out in the dying seconds of the sixth round, giving birth to the meme “Mannying.”
Copyediting. “Scolding about typos and pouncing on errant apostrophes are cheap grabs for low-hanging fruit. And much of it is misinformed and counterproductive.” Carol Saller argued how sticklers miss the point of copyediting in an update on The Subversive Copy Editor blog. John E. McIntyre agreed with Saller and said that while he maintains his You Don’t Say column in The Baltimore Sun without an editor, “you, dear reader, are not always going to get the best work, and you, dear writer, you’re probably going to be left to your own devices and resources most of the time.”
Accuracy. “I just hope I don’t get commenters over there criticizing me for failing to render my quotations accurately,” Geoffrey K. Pullum wrote as he revealed the differences he and his New York Times editor had on quoting The Economist in a piece on “shaken but not stirred.” In another Language Log post, Mark Liberman questioned the accuracy of Stephanie Banchero’s interpretation of the results of the 2011 National Assessment of Educational Progress.
Writing. “Readers are human, and humans seem programmed to wait for answers to questions they witness being asked,” wrote Lee Child, author of the Jack Reacher novel One Shot, as he gave tips for creating suspense in his contribution to the New York Times’s Draft blog series. Meanwhile, Merill Perlman, former head of the Times’s copy desks, updated The Language Corner with a piece pointing out how important it is to give context as soon as the reader needs it.
Tolerance. “You must know and accept the limits of your tolerance of clients. And you must be willing to act on those limits.” Professional advice on firing or losing a client from An American Editor.
Editing prompts. “Your editing prompt is the small voice that asks ‘I wonder why that word always escapes me?’ or observes ‘I really must remember to check why I think this is the right expression in that context.’” Katy McDevitt gave a tip on reminding yourself of “the editor you want to be.”
We at Project Chiron aim to encourage the use of social media for knowledge exchange and skills development. We’re not necessarily about current events; we are about relevance, credibility and innovation. With millions of content spread and shared through social media networks every day, we want to help you see what’s important so you won’t have to sweep through all your news feeds and tweets. Our weekly roundups are curated by Dan Dupale, Mina Jesuitas and Mark Hilaria and edited by Adrian Claudio.