What You Can Do
Every little bit helps. That's one of our beliefs concerning the improvement of English spelling. We are convinced that reader opinions matter to editors and publishers of newspapers and magazines -- these same editors and publishers update the stylistic elements of their texts, including spelling, on a semi-regular basis. They pay top dollar to discover audience preferences and here you are providing yours for free-- step right up. So if you prefer simplicity and would like our English spelling to be a little bit simpler, then now is a good time to
Letter to Editor
November 20, 2001
To a much lesser extent, the literacy rate in [ " ] is influenced by the editorial values and practices of people such as yourself. For better or worse, the editorial choices you make have some bearing on local literacy rates. Some suggest making texts simpler and plainer at the expense of accuracy, but not me. I ask that you consider a plain and simple idea that's also accurate and subtle: incorporate the authorized simpler spellings contained in the enclosed short lists of dictionary variants- several of which very likely grace the pages of your publication already.
According to mainstream dictionaries, variant spellings are by definition very nearly
identical in frequency to their sister spellings. As you will
quickly see, ALC officials (in association with mainstream
dictionary publishers and Dick Venezky, author of The American Way of
Spelling) have underscored the simpler of the two and are asking style manual and
spell-check producers to simplify their preferred spellings list.
Thanks for helping us remind editors that the editorial choices they make have a bearing on literacy rates.
American Literacy Council, 230 S. 39th Street, Boulder, CO 80305