This seems to be a reoccurring problem. As someone with dyslexia myself I understand how easy it is to make mistakes. However, Stack Exchange is a site that is supposed to be professional and we seem to have a problem with some users consistently not bothering to use a basic spellchecker or proof read. It comes across as lazy and can damage the image of the site.

Down-voting doesn't seem to be the answer because once someone has edited the post it is no longer a reason for down-voting. It also comes across as fairly petty to down-vote and not fix the spelling yourself.

How do we go about solving this problem?

Note: I don't want to pick on anyone in particular, so I'm not providing examples; however we have users who should know better.
Note 2: I know that we have users who's primary language is not English, that doesn't mean they shouldn't be using a spellchecker.

tl;dr PLEASE use a spellchecker before you post

Since this wasn't known: If using chrome you can choose another language from the right click menu in a text editing area.

  • $\begingroup$ I know that I've been the cause of a question or two that I've failed to spell check in the past so I'm not innocent of this. There seem to be some who don't even make the effort however. $\endgroup$ – Mourdos Oct 17 '14 at 11:27
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ "users who's primary language is" — Muphry's law? $\endgroup$ – celtschk Oct 18 '14 at 7:49
  • $\begingroup$ I didn't claim to be perfect. I actually thought that was right. Should it be user's whose? $\endgroup$ – Mourdos Oct 18 '14 at 15:40
  • $\begingroup$ "users whose" -- user's would be trying to take the possessive and who's would be who is. And I'm still trying to figure out if Muphry's law was a sly dig or unintentional demonstration. Sarcasm doesn't play well on the internet. $\endgroup$ – Brythan Oct 29 '14 at 21:07

How do we go about solving this problem?

Simple. Edit the post to fix the errors. This goes whether the errors are in spelling or grammar.

If you don't have the time to fix all of it (we tend to get answers especially that go rather well in depth, which makes them rather lengthy), you certainly can fix a part of it. Someone else, or perhaps yourself later on, is likely to come along and fix the remainder. Just make sure you feel comfortable enough with English that you don't risk making things worse with your edits, and if you are uncertain about a particular change, don't make it at all.

Borrowing from the help center article on editing, my emphasis:

Any time you see a post that needs improvement and are inclined to suggest an edit, you are welcome to do so. The original author of a question or answer may always edit their own post, regardless of reputation level.

Edits are expected to be substantial and to leave the post better than you found it. Common reasons for edits include:

  • To fix grammar and spelling mistakes
  • To clarify the meaning of the post (without changing that meaning)


If you edit a post, the edit shows up under either "suggestions" or "revisions" under the "activity" tab of your profile (accessible by clicking on your reputation/badges counts in the top bar), so you can easily find your way back to a post you have previously edited.

There is nothing wrong with not fixing everything that is wrong with a post within an edit, but please try to make each edit substantial enough to count. Remember that editing a post bumps that question to the top of the front page, so try to avoid minor edits on older posts in particular, even if you have the reputation to make them.


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