Grammar shaming

I follow a very cool, very smart writer/actor/director on Twitter. His tweets are usually witty and fun. Today, though, he replied to someone with what I would call public grammar shaming.

Here let me say that I am constantly shocked at the things people will tweet in general but to celebrities especially. I’ve wondered if celebs read the Tweets directed to or in reply to something they Tweet. Sometimes people can be wildly inappropriate – on so many levels and not just in deplorable spelling and grammar usage.

I think this guy must read at least some of the tweets to or about him because I have seen him respond before.

Today’s reply Tweet was in response to that grammar nazi favorite ‘your/you’re’ error. I know this is a ‘fingernails on the chalkboard’ error for many of us.

Writer/Director/Actor tweeted about leaving the country. Random person who felt compelled to reply said “If your going, I’m coming with you to make sure your ok”.

Ok, so this is grammatically painful and generally awkward. I totally get that.

But Writer/Director/Actor actually replies back to her. His reply tweet is simply: “you’re”.

I know I was not the only one of his half a million followers who had to then look at the person’s tweets to see what was said.

I wondered was this a hilarious reply to a friend? An ongoing inside joke maybe?

Nope. It appeared to be just some clueless Twitter newbie with 20 some odd followers who then apologized and figuratively hung head in shame in her reply back.

The exchange made me think of the scene in the movie, Pitch Perfect where The Bellas leader, Aubrey, calls out a newly initiated member for sleeping with the rival acapella group they’ve all sworn not to be involved with. Girl getting kicked out drags her metal chair across the floor, sad screeching sound filling the otherwise silent room. Then Becca, our Too Cool For Everything heroine, says in her best indignant tone, “Was that really necessary?”

Random tweet was awkward and the grammatical errors were egregious, but, “Was that really necessary?”

When is it okay to grammar shame someone? Is it? And upon whom does this most poorly reflect? The person who made the stupid error, or the person who chooses to highlight the person’s mistake?

I think the answer is in this question: “Is it better to right or to be kind?”

Kind – always kind.