Mispelled...Or, Misspelled Bus Stop Signs

6:32 PM, Jun 30, 2010   |    comments
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WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- Most people may not catch the mistake printed on a bus stop shelter at the corner of Massachusetts and Garfield, but when they do...they usually wind up laughing.

"It's kind of embarrassing isn't it?" asked Sandra Rachelle. "If you're going to print a sign you better get a proofreader."

Printed clearly above two shelters at that intersection is "Massachusettes," with an "es" at the end of the word.

"And Metro want us to pay more and yet, they can't spell the names of the streets correctly?" asked Melissa Davis once she noticed the problem.

Not really. It turns out DC's Department of Transportation is responsible for the shelters. A spokesman tells 9NEWS NOW the city contracts with Clear Channel to replace all of the old bus stop shelters, including misspelled signs for free. In exchange, the company gets all of the advertising revenue from the new shelters.

It's not the first time a misspelled word has made its way onto a bus stop shelter. Welovedc.com posted an April photo of a similar problem on Connecticut and Dupont. Since then, the sign has been changed.

"Whenever someone brings a mistake to our attention, we correct it," said DDOT spokesman John Lisle.

Even though Clear Channel makes the signs, it's still unclear who is responsible for the misspellings.

Josh Chernikoff is not surprised. As CEO of Ashley Tutors, he is concerned that spelling is getting lost along the way.

"Certainly with the students we work with...the younger students...spelling is emphasized all the time," he said. "When you get into the middle and high school levels, spelling is not emphasized as much, and it's the content of what you're writing instead."

"I think it's being lost along the way because you don't have to worry about it," he continued, adding we all rely more on technology. "Microsoft Word, text messaging, Google will figure out exactly what you're trying to say however you spell it."

Written by Brittany Morehouse 
9NEWS NOW & wusa9.com

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