Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

OKC Legal Briefs: August 28, 2008

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

OKC Legal Briefs: August 28, 2008

Article excerpt

Ever see a sign bearing an obvious typo and want to fix it?

If it's at a national park, think twice before you act.

Two members of the Typo Eradication Advancement League apparently just couldn't stand an apostrophe they thought was out of place on a 60-year-old sign on a watchtower at Grand Canyon National Park.

Jeff Deck of Somerville, Mass., and Benjamin Herson of Virginia Beach, Va., both 28, wrote on the TEAL Web Site that they used a marker to cover the punctuation error, putting one where it should be and adding a comma.

They said they left in place a misspelled "emense," not wanting to disfigure the sign further.

A park service agent said investigators learned of the act through the Web site.

The sign was created by architect Mary Elizabeth Jane Colter, who designed the watchtower and other park landmarks.

Deck and Harrison spent a few months this spring correcting errors on signs, both government and private.

The two pleaded guilty to conspiracy to vandalize government property, were sentenced to probation and banned from national parks for one year.

By the way, their Web site sports an error of its own.

The only thing on it now is the message "Statement on the signage of our National Parks and public lands to come" minus the punctuation that would make it a sentence, like this one.

Seinfeld, Maryland court agree

Spite is not a proper reason to return a jacket, nor, apparently, for Tom Clancy to withdraw from a television and paperback book series that brought in profits to a partnership the author formed with his then-wife Wanda.

In a footnote, the Maryland Court of Appeals quotes dialogue from a Seinfeld episode in which a store clerk tells Jerry that he cannot return a jacket for spite, just because he does not like the salesman. Jerry tells the manager the same thing. Jerry then tries to say he just doesn't want the item, to which the manager replies, "No, you said spite. Too late."

In the Clancy case, the appeals panel said the trial court will have to decide whether the author acted in bad faith. …

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