Wednesday, October 31, 2007

October 31, 2007

B O O O !
"Booo" isn't actually on the typo list because the word or sound is used frequently in printed texts to convey spookiness. "Boook*" is on the list for moderate probability. Correcting "booo*" titles and contents notes need to be done with book-in-hand. What is scary is that "boook," "boooks," "booomer," "booogie," and the family names of "Boooge" and "Booone" are readily used in place of the correct spelling in online catalogs!
Wendee Eyler
photo credit:

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

October 30, 2007 - Halll*

Since Wednesday, October 31, is Halloween, you might want to check your catalog for any typos that begin "Halll*". This typo is on the Low Probability list, but expect to find "Halll" for a last name, or the word "Halllujah," or publisher "Hallltd." Even "Hallloween" might be lurking.

Wendee Eyler

Monday, October 29, 2007

October 29, 2007 - Greee*

Greee* is a typo for words that should begin with "gree" ! A check of OhioLINK found these variations of typos in title, contents, summary, added entry, and subject fields:


Use truncation in a keyword search to find even more!

Wendee Eyler

Friday, October 26, 2007

October 26, 2007 - Distrub

Distrub for disturb resides on the Highest Probability (Section A) of the typo list.

Be sure to use the wildcard symbol for best results.

Door sign created by the staff of Tutt Library at Colorado College.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

October 25, 2007 - Newstand

It's two words combined that keep all the original letters. Somehow the second s is dropped often enough to put today's typo, newstand for newsstand, on the list of entries for next year's Low Probability D section.

Barcelona newsstand image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

October 24, 2007 - Shakepear*

Shakepear* for Shakespeare, a High Probability B error, has an asterisk to suggest making a truncated search with your system's wildcard symbol, thus pulling up Shakepear, Shakepeare and Shakepearean. Several other typos show up on the Lowest Probability E List: Sakespear* Shakekpear* Shakesear* Shakespaear* Shkespear* Akespear* and Hakespear*

The Bard himself spelled his name several ways. The most frequent alternative was Shakespear.

Image courtesy of the Library of Congress.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

October 23, 2007 - Extraterrestial

Extraterrestial for extraterrestrial is a new High Probability entry. A missing letter toward the end of a long word is easy to overlook. But if they are thoughtful enough to visit us, we should take the time to spell their appellation correctly.

Monday, October 22, 2007

October 22, 2007 - tot he

Tot he, a typo for to the, is being added to the Moderate Probability C list. It invariably happens in a title, usually one in a contents note. Although it may not sabotage a keyword search, it is worth clearing out of our databases just because it's there.

Tot photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Friday, October 19, 2007

October 19, 2007 - Yeaer*

Yeaer* Although this typo occurs only once in a while, it's fitting to report, especially since the blog has now been operating for 374 days, give or take a few.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

October 18, 2007 - Y20th

Instances of y20th, if you find them, will almost certainly be errors in MARC coding.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

October 17, 2007 - Kentycky

Kentycky is not a typo you'd expect to find in many records, but an astonishing twenty were retrieved in OhioLINK. They're all found in microform reproduction notes, and are probably the result of either using a template or deriving one record from another. Ycky!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

October 16, 2007 - Kentuckly

Kentuckly, unlike yesterday's post, is not likely to be a spelling from centuries gone by. You'll be luckly if you find it, since only two records were found, each with just one holding, at OhioLINK. The typo was in the contents note in each case.

Monday, October 15, 2007

October 15, 2007 - Kentuckey

Kentuckey, if encountered, is more likely to date from centuries past when spelling was not standardized. It's unlikely, however, that the publication "The woolen industry of the Midwest [by] Norman L. Crockett" actually was issued with the imprint as "The University Press of Kentuckey".

Friday, October 12, 2007

October 12, 2007 - Grat Britain

Grat Britain for Great Britain is a puzzler. Most dropped-vowel typos tend to be buried at the end of long words. It is on the Low Probability list at Typographical Errors in Library Databases, but there were 37 hits for it this morning in WorldCat. Since the R and E keys are adjacent on a QWERTY keyboard, one can imagine how the initial miskeying occurred. More confusing is how it got past proofreaders at the local and OCLC level.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

October 11, 2007 - Washigton

Washigton for Washington continues our mostly geographic theme this week. It can be found on the B or high probability list at Typographical Errors in Library Databases at

This omitted letter typo is not likely to be a deliberate mistake, but we must add the standard disclaimer. Do not take out any typo in your catalog without looking at the individual records to see the nature of the error.

If the word is followed by "sic" then it is a publishing error, and it should remain in the record.
Given that there are 188 hits for Washigton in WorldCat, we'd say there is a good chance that this will be found in your catalog.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

October 10, 2007 - Massacusetts

Massacusetts for Massachusetts represents one of the most common categories of typos - a dropped letter in the second half of a multisyllabic word. This one is found on the C or moderate page of Typographical Errors in Library Databases at Here is a sampling of the error rate in a variety of places:

OhioLINK - 8
WorldCat - 143
Google - 80,000
ProQuest - 77
JSTOR - 48

Place names are a staple on our typo lists, and this is one of the most misspelled states by far. Chatham, Mass., where the following picture was taken, is on the other end of the spectrum.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

October 9, 2007 - Medival

Medival for Medieval is found on the B, or very high probability, section of Typographical errors in library databases, meaning that it generated at least 16 hits in OhioLINK at the time of its discovery. This morning, it was still giving 22 hits there. Most importantly for your library, the typo was found in 77 titles today in WorldCat. Is this careless typing or do people have trouble spelling this word? In Google, there are exactly 409,000 hits today. Tomorrow, there will be 409,001 because Google indexes this blog within hours.

Monday, October 8, 2007

October 8, 2007 - Colubm*

Colubm* for Columbus or Columbia gets us in the mood for the celebration of Columbus Day 2007. This was an unusual choice because the typo is not yet on the main list at Since it was present 7 times this morning in OhioLINK, we expect it to be on the Low Probability, or D section, of the list in future revisions. The image below is of Columbus Circle in New York City.

Friday, October 5, 2007

October 5, 2007 - Conneticut

Conneticut for Connecticut is found on the B, or high probability, list of the Libtypos project at Catalogers in Connecticut libraries need to be wary of this one due to the fact that they have a lot of books about their own state. Even the Orbis catalog at Yale displays 18 hits for Conneticut and the University of Connecticut shows 12. The WorldCat catalog has more than 200, so it is a typo to watch.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

October 4, 2007 - treee

You'd think that you would never see a hit set for the typo treee. But you do, although the odds are very low. This typo came on to our list at the bottom probability level, truncated as treee*.

This morning we found the same hit count in OhioLINK and WorldCat for treee and treee* - 1 and 19 hits respectively. Moving beyond library catalogs, we found 1 hit for treee in Infotrac and 8 in ProQuest Direct.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

October 3, 2007 - Vermon

Vermon for Vermont is in the D, or Low Probability, section of Typographical Errors in Library Databases, meaning that it was found 2-7 times in OhioLINK at the time of its discovery. We give our standard disclaimer that a cataloger should never correct this without first checking the individual record for context. We got 76 hits for this in WorldCat, but it was a mixed bag, to say the least. In some cases, it was a legitimate first or last name. It could possibly be a typo for vermin or even sermon. Always check.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

October 2, 2007 - Octber

Octber for October came on to the "Typographical errors in library databases" list in the moderate (8-15 hits in OhioLINK) category as the truncation "Octb." This morning, the truncated search got only 3 hits in OhioLINK - due to the fact that catalogers in those libraries pay attention to the work we do. Missing vowels are the number one culprits around here, although missing "o's" are far less likely than missing "i's." You will find 27 Octbers today in WorldCat, although some of them have a 'sic' to inform us that the mistake was on the title page of the work. This week's photography (and postings) provided by Terry Ballard.

Monday, October 1, 2007

October 1, 2007 - Ocober

Ocober for October - what could be more in tune with the times? This can be found on the 'D' or low probability list at
Checking Google we find a modest (for Google) 70,000 hits for the typo. More to the point for librarians, there are 35 hits in WorldCat, and many of these show up in title fields - arguably the worst kind of typo. To highlight the international aspect of this work, we checked Iris, the combined university catalog in Ireland at and found 2 hits in the catalog of Trinity. There are other variations of October still to be seen, so stay tuned.