US Spelling is a pain

March 29, 2007

Posted at 901am today on Bush quoting bloggers. Headline “President quotes bloggers in Iraq defense”, but is it right? In normal (ie not US) English the last word would be defence, and that’s how I originally wrote the post until the “I have to convert this to US English because of the site” part of my brain kicked in. Looking at it, it looks wrong to me, but I think its right in terms of US English, but maybe I’m wrong…anyhow, I’m sure you’ll get my drift on this 🙂

6 responses to US Spelling is a pain

  1. It’s all relative, really – even a preference .. as a Canadian, I pause each time and because of that I often use both spellings for favor/favour, color/colour, etc … interchanging them in the same post.

    Now .. then you get the odd spelling that keeps ’em guessing … picutres?

  2. I think that these days the whole US/British spelling thing is a complete furphy. As business people who spend so much of our time dealing with Americans, the whole spelling issue ought rightly to have disappeared into oblivion where it belongs.

    While the “s” spelling of defence is visually a little grating, other words in modern Australian/British/Canadian English are considered to have both spellings. In fact, etymologically speaking, the British spellings are a relatively recent (

  3. My comment got trimmed!

    … relatively recent historical artifact (less than 250 years) of the widespread publication of dictionaries and several academic turf wars.

  4. I can’t speak for all Americans, but it seems like we like it when folks use the non-American spellings. It makes us feel cultured :-).

    For example, when the fancy new shopping center in my town opened, they called themselves “The Shoppes of Eastchase”. To say “shops” would just be uncouth, but “shoppes” has class, for some reason. I have a client who’s British, and his way of saying/spelling things is always charming to me.

  5. I am with you Duncan. It is a pain. And Hart I continually switch back and forth between spelling colour/color. Defence just looks and reads better with a “C”.

  6. Jessica
    as much as I don’t like it I can live with color as opposed to colour, I guess it’s growing up with consumer electronics where the Japanese box always had the US spelling, but defense just feels outright weird…the c makes so much more sense, particularly with the pronunciation…after all, it’s de-fence, fence as in something surrounding my house, do Americans spell fence fense?