Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Four Letters, Four Errors; or, Why I Hate Editing Govt. Proposals

The proposal I edited yesterday responds to a Request for Proposal entitled, "[govt. agency] Status Determination Support, Et. Al"

That title appears on the cover page, in a host of supporting documents, and in every single page header.

I was told in no uncertain terms by both the proposal manager and the proposal center manager that I can't change Et. Al to et al. That would be "correcting" the government—a no-no.

In addition, et al. is used incorrectly, as the proposal relates to providing support, among other things, not support and a bunch of people.

It is incomprehensible that, during the entire (and undoubtedly very lengthy) process that ended with the release of the RFP, no one spotted these egregious errors.