Grammar in Olympics story…

October 8, 2009

Chicago go out in first round of 2016 Olympics voting
COPENHAGEN, Oct 2 (Reuters) – Chicago were eliminated after the first round of voting for the 2016 Olympics host city.

Correct grammer would be Chiicago WAS eliminated. The grammer in the headline is also atrocious: “Chicago go out…” What does that mean?

Please watch what you publish, running a grammer checker would probably have eliminated both of those errors.

Michael C.

For quite some time now I have been referencing Reuters’ website for news updates because of your quality and accuracy in reporting. Understandably the occasional error slips through – not a big deal.

However, your current article(s) on the failed Chicago Olympic bid are (or should be) an embarrasment. Clearly the products of a lazy reporter and editor using a prewritten template, the news items with their repeated errors in grammar show both a lack of concern for us as readers and for your own reputation.

A deadline rush is no excuse. Shame on you.


Shame on us, indeed. Understandably, we took a hit on this one. The fact that one of these readers misspelled grammar and the other misspelled embarrassment doesn’t excuse our poor writing and editing: GBU Editor

International Olympic Committee President, Jacques Rogge, holds a card with the name of Rio de Janeiro, chosen as the city to host the 2016 Olympic Games, during the 121st IOC session in Copenhagen October 2, 2009. REUTERS/Charles Dharapak/Pool

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I am a Reuters editor who was involved in this story.

The grammar issue stems from British and American usage.

Our World Desk in London first handled the story because the announcement came from Copenhagen. In Britain, sports teams take the plural so this was extended to “Chicago were eliminated.”

Our Americas Desk in Washington handled the story later in the day and the headline soon was “Rio wins 2016 Games…”

Posted by John O’Callaghan | Report as abusive

‚ÄúChicago were eliminated.”
I appreciate the grammar lesson learned and relieved that it was not an error or slang.

Posted by Tom Grabowski | Report as abusive

I was going to jump in on this one, but see that Mr. O’Callaghan has beat me to it.

Our British cousins always use a plural with a collective noun, and their idea of a collective is a bit broader than ours on this side of The Pond.

Posted by ray | Report as abusive

I’m just glad you commented on the fact that they had misspelled words also.

Posted by lorilei | Report as abusive