Category: verbs

I can understand a plural noun turning into a possessive, like the plural “birds” becoming the possessive “bird’s”. You’ve seen “the bird’s beak” in the past, so “bird’s” is semi-familiar.

But present-tense verbs having apostrophes makes no sense to me. “Find’s” has no rational context whatsoever. It seems like they’re just throwing up their hands and going, “I’m pretty sure that I’ve seen words ending in the letter s that have an apostrophe. Yeah, why not, go ahead and throw an apostrophe in there.”

Which leads to me to today’s monstrosities.

Freedom Media Ethics on Twitter (via TheDissolve):

Carman Tse ...  find’s Bad Apostrophe

Carman Tse … find’s

From a Republic Wireless blog entry:

Republic Wireless - app let's you Bad Apostrophe

app let’s you

There are two meanings of the word “lets”, with two different ways of writing it. (Okay, three meanings if you count the TV prop potato chip brand “Let’s,” which spoofs the “Lay’s” brand.)

First, you have a verb that means “allows,” e.g. “He lets his son eat too much candy.” This meaning should never have an apostrophe.

Second, you have a contraction of the words “let us,” as in “Let’s all go to the lobby.” This meaning should always have an apostrophe.

You know what’s coming next: examples of bad writers breaking the rules of “lets.” Let’s get this over with.

View full article »

Spotted in the title of a YouTube video posted by the official Olympics channel:

Katie Ledecky Win's Bad Apostrophe

Katie Ledecky Win’s

Seen on an listicle about Google and privacy:

Google let’s you export Bad Apostrophe

Google let’s you export

Another one for the Wired Wall of Shame, this time from a Wired Design story about Instagram’s new Hyperlapse app.

let's you | proper API's Bad Apostrophes

let’s you | proper API’s

From a Fox News story about ways I Love Lucy would be different today:

The Ricardo’s lived Bad Apostrophe

The Ricardo’s lived

On a CBS slideshow about Comic Con memories:

CBS - in years' past Bad Apostrophe

in years’ past

(I think someone got confused about what the phrase means. The years aren’t owning anything here, guys.)

And in a story about Modern Family: - on Wednesday's Bad Apostrophe

on Wednesday’s

(Wow, we’ve got CBS, Fox, and ABC… we just need an NBC show to call out here and we’d be have the big four.)

From a GeoTrust knowledge base article about installing SSL certificates:

Geotrust - other web server's Bad Apostrophe

other web server’s

And on the web site of an Asian restaurant in American Fork, Utah:

Temptasian - Promotion's Bad Apostrophe


(Note the page title right above is correctly just “Promotions”.)

Here’s a few new-media BA gems that I’ve found on Twitter recently.

First, this unneeded acronym apostrophe from the official Internet Explorer Twitter account.

Free VM's Bad Apostrophe

Free VM’s

Next, another Mythbusters “it’s” gaffe.

sets it's targets on Bad Apostrophe

sets it’s targets on

Finally, from the generally funny “Modern Seinfeld” Twitter account (@SeinfeldToday), a present-tense verb with an extra apostrophe that’s not so amusing.

mugger let's him keep it Bad Apostrophe

mugger let’s him keep it

Look guys, I understand that the Internet is a whole new world for writers, but if you’ve only got 140 characters to use on a single post, don’t make one of them a redundant apostrophe.


… like on this head-mounted flashlight package…

7 LED's Head Lamp Bad Apostrophe

7 LED’s Head Lamp

… or on this poster at the KFC in American Fork, Utah…

America's Only Authentic Sport's Car Bad Apostrophe

America’s Only Authentic Sport’s Car

… or on this API documentation page written by programmers at

Set's - Edit’s - Delete’s Bad Apostrophes

Set’s – Edit’s – Delete’s

… or this article on about rendering in IE5

Microsoft released it's then brand new Bad Apostrophe

Microsoft released it’s then brand new

… or this article on Priceonomics about the future of journalism

let's fans choose Bad Apostrophe

let’s fans choose

… or this Seven Peaks Fun Center page about its attractions

With it's antique horses Bad Apostrophe

With it’s antique horses


Almond Joy’s got nuts, Mounds don’t.

Today’s Bad Non-Apostrophe comes to us courtesy of The Late Show with David Letterman, specifically, the Top Ten Things You Don’t Want to Hear From the Person Sitting Next to Your [sic] On A Plane.

Late Show Top Ten - sound like your bouncing Bad Non-Apostrophe

sound like your bouncing

Interestingly, the video that actually aired on The Late Show was correct. So some intern who transcribed the list for the web is probably to blame.

you're bouncing (correct)

you’re bouncing (correct)


I previously pointed out a badly-placed apostrophe in EA’s The Simpsons: Tapped Out game. Now they’ve updated the whole game with a temporary wintertime theme, and with the update came a new bad non-apostrophe.

Lets use them... Bad Non-Apostrophe

Lets use them…

Lisa would never write a sentence like that and leave out the apostrophe in “let’s.”

On Thingiverse’s Help with Barcodes page, they call for a blurring of lines between digital stuff and real-world stuff. Unfortunately, they’re also getting a bit fuzzy with their grammar.

lets blur some lines Bad Non-Apostrophe

lets blur some lines


In my TV post last week, I highlighted a few sites on which I’d seen a Bad Apostrophe or two, including GeekZenith. But as I was browsing around his site, I saw several more apostrophe problems in GZ’s stories. In fact, from the half-dozen posts that I clicked into, I found BAs in all but one of them. In short, he has a consistent problem with punctuation.

He really covers the gamut of types of Bad Apostrophes, too. From “it’s”…

... it's much better ... Bad Apostrophe

… it’s much better counter part …

... it's fifth season...  Bad Apostrophe

… it’s fifth season…

… to general possession…

... the terrorists unbridled love... Bad Non-Apostrophe

… the terrorists unbridled love…

… to present-tense verbs…

... Sony let’s slip that their Amazing Spider-Man... Bad Apostrophe

… Sony let’s slip that their Amazing Spider-Man…

... flick Oblivion get's official synopsis... Bad Apostrophe

… flick Oblivion get’s official synopsis…

… to plurals…

Should the studio’s MAKE this happen... Bad Apostrophe

Should the studio’s MAKE this happen…

he filmed his scene’s for the movie Bad Apostrophe

he filmed his scene’s for the movie

… and even names.

... the ones who flagged up Thano’s making an appearance... Bad Apostrophe

… the ones who flagged up Thano’s making an appearance…

I’m sure that if I kept reading this guy’s site, I’d amass quite the collection of BAs — one to rival that of the Wired writers. But I don’t plan to go back, because aside from the apostrophe errors, he also had lots of other grammar problems and I didn’t find his writing particularly insightful.