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The 2010 Oops Awards

It is time again to indulge in one of the great, bittersweet pleasures of being an editor: spotting the goofs of others (a task always accomplished, mind you, with compassion, an explanation of the error involved and a workaround solution). Yes, it's time to scan the text—advertisements, not-so-scholarly journals, newspapers, bedtime reading, billboards, menus and signs seen around the globe—and send in your submissions for The Oops Awards.

We hope, of course, that you have been accumulating these all year long just to send to us! Don't forget to go through emails you have sent to friends and colleagues reporting amusing goofs you've seen in the wild.

The Editors' Association of Canada membership is uniquely qualified to spot—and appreciate—infelicities, ambiguities, mistakes and grimace-inducing word wounds. Together, we'll recognize the best of the bad. Here's your chance to contribute your favourites and share a laugh or three.


  1. Most Expensive Error
  2. Misplaced Best Modifier
  3. Sexiest Slipup
  4. Spell It Again, Sam
  5. Say What? [jargon]
  6. Mangled Metaphors
  7. Mrs. Malaprop's Vasculary [misused words]
  8. Page Slay-out [bad layout juxtapositions, line breaks, etc.]
  9. Did You Really Mean That? [unfortunate choice of wording]
  10. Missed Connections [inconsistencies]
  11. Lost in Translation
  12. The Instructions Say So
  13. Signs of the Times [photos of public signage]

Entry guidelines

  1. Entries are welcome from all EAC members; please provide your full first and last names with your submission.
  2. Entries may be in English or French.
  3. Entries in Categories 1 through 12 must appear in documents (print or online) published in 2009 or 2010. Please identify the source.
  4. Entries in Category 13 must be publicly viewable. Please identify their location. Photo submissions should be no larger than 1MB.
  5. If the same entry is submitted by several members, the first entry received will be acknowledged as the official entry.
  6. You may enter as often as you like.
  7. Laughter will be your reward, along with publication on the association website and in our newsletter, Active Voice.

Send your entries for The Oops Awards to by April 30, 2010.


Once the entries are in, you get to vote for the greatest gaffes. Online voting will commence on May 5, 2010. Be sure to select your favourite entries by May 14, 2010.

The Oops Award goes to …

The winning entries will be presented during the banquet of the 2010 conference in Montreal on May 29, 2010.