As a bit of light relief, here are a few 'bloopers' which will make you laugh, but in reality mistakes like these can be very costly, by denting both your reputation and your pocket!

Newspaper classified ad: Large crotched sofabed throw

Bridgeway Cinemas, Auckland:

All tickets and the electronic sign above the cinema door showed the following for the film "A bunch of Amateurs":


An Auckland butchery chain:

Fluorescent, bright orange labels with bold black lettering on packs on beef announced that it was:  SIRLION

This gem was on the Internet in May:


Locals in the town of Blackburn, West Lothian, show there support for Britain's Got Talent contestant Susan Boyle on April 18, 2009 in Blackburn, Scotland. The 47-year-old woman from West Lothian has become an overnight sinning sensation with millions watching her TV performance online.

Poor woman!! (There are actually four mistakes: 2 spelling mistakes and 2 repeats.)

And this in a newspaper, about a bubbly, but rather overweight celebrity:

What was meant was: "In short, she was irresistible."
What was printed was: "In shorts, she was irresistible."

On a restaurant menu, Mt Ruapehu:

Fresh Tagliatelle pasta, sundried tomato, olive pesto and almond slithers.

Slithers: to go or walk with a sliding motion, as in: "the snake slithers across the path".
The correct word is slivers, as in "to split or cut off (a sliver) or to split or cut into slivers".

From a UK online survey website:

This is a long survey, so in return you will earn 350 points. Please ensure you set aside enough time to complete this survey before you start.

TV Guide 23-29 August 2008:

Saturday 23 Aug – Olympic Games evening session: “… diving (men’s 100m platform final) …”

Large Stationery Group:

2009 Dairy's and Calandars

From a US Newspaper article:

Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and Lawrence Ellison topped the Forbes list of the top ten richest people in the U.S., having a combined wealth, as of Friday, of nearly $8,000.

A Wine Club advertisement:

Join XXXXXX wine club and take up the introductory offer of £15 bottles for £39.99.

From a Medical Journal:

Irritable Bowl Syndrome.


They are SOMETIMES purely typing errors, and SOMETIMES the result of a lack of knowledge - but they are ALWAYS bad for your image.

A Large international corporate's 'Retirement' magazine stated:

Ill health caused some last minute cancellations and little wonder due to the inclimate weather.

Perhaps would have been better as:
Ill health caused some last-minute cancellations but little wonder with the inclement weather.

This was sent from a company apologising for an overcharge:

I would like to apologues for... We do indever ... We will put a credit thru ...

Hardly what a company should be sending out.

Or this page from a holiday park website:

Our camp has 96 comfortable (mainly 2 berth but some 3 or 4 berth) cabins all equipped with beds or bunks, mattresses, pillows, heater and a table and chair. All guests bring own bedding. We can accommadate over 220 guests and have large recreation rooms and function rooms to meet all requirements.Communual showers and washrooms are well situated and kitchens have toasters, cookers, fridges and frezzers.

The camp is set in 3 hectares of park like- grounds of grass and trees. There is plenty of space and privacy for individual or group camping and cabin accommadation. Outdoor games are covered, we have a volleyball net, a croquet set,childrens play area and plenty of room for a game of cricket.

Four mistakes on this sign.

And of course, there is always the poor apostrophe:

- either omitted when it should be in (plus, a total spelling error here) - OR - put in when not required - OR

'Changing smoker's lives by changing smoker's minds.'

- apostrophe put in the wrong place! It should be smokers'.


All these examples show that it is so easy for us all to make mistakes. Sometimes there is just not enough time for checking, but you can see just how important it is.

As proofreaders and copy editors, we are not making fun of others by pointing out these mistakes. Our job is to find the errors TO HELP YOU, so that your document, sign, brochure or website is as accurate as it can be and reflects well on your company or organisation.

Thanks to NZIBS students for some of these examples.