March 8 is Proofreading Day. The day promotes error-free communication and encourages everyone to spend some time updating and expanding his or her proofreading skills.
Proofreading is a careful examination and reading of any written text to spot spelling, grammatical, stylistic, and punctuation errors before its publication.
Proofreading or Copy Editing
While often confused with copy editing, proofreading does not usually include editorial revision. Unlike copy editors, who may receive copies or versions of the text throughout the writing or editing process, proofreaders only get to the see the final proof right before publication.
The job of the proofreader is to go carefully through documents and spot formatting and typography errors in the text. In contrast to a copy editor, who can fine-tune the text themselves after spotting errors, a proofreader is expected to send the text back to the writer or the editor for making corrections.
Proofreading and Technology
In recent years, with the emergence of word processing and typesetting software, the proofreading profession has undergone a sea change. Today, proofreaders do not need to use old-fashioned symbols to indicate errors - they can highlight errors right within the electronic text. New proofreading software has also cut down the time a proofreader needs to spend on a text.
How to Celebrate?
Celebrate Proofreading Day by combing through all your writings carefully and spotting mistakes and correcting them. It is only human to make mistakes, but it is also human to correct them.
Find ways to enhance your communication – proofread your emails and even phone texts and SMSs.
Spend some time learning the tools of effective and efficient proofreading.
Did You Know…
…that a 1631 reprint of the King James Bible was called the Wicked Bible because of a proofreading error? The commandment “Thou shalt not commit adultery” was mistakenly printed as “Thou shalt commit adultery.”