Saturday, 9 March 2013

The Write and the Wrong

Mahesh Vijapurkar has revived his blog. I am confident that journalists, media teachers and students will benefit from writing. He is, after all, a veteran journalist who retired as deputy editor of the Hindu. Have a look at his first blog after revival and you will keep following his writing at

When use of 'out' when 'in' would have done.

In a news item on March 4, 2013, The Hindu said this: "They got two children born out of their wedlock". That was not the newspaper had meant to convey.

The report was about a couple who quarreled and then resumed their marital life after which they had two children. That is very much within the wedlock.

It is possible that the writer literally translated what is said for the same thing in any Indian language - it happened from out of it, or because of it. The outhere is not the same as saying, for instance, out of frustration, he screamed.

That error could mean a lot to the couple. The man in has been identified by name, about how a criminal case against him following his wife's complaint - fortunately not named - led to a criminal case. That led to denial of a job for which he otherwise qualified.

We do not know if the person complained to the newspaper or threatened it with a suit because children out of wedlock reflected adversely to their reputation. The Reader' Editor corrected it in his Corrections and clarifications column on March 7.

There is another issue with the construction of that unintended mischievous sentence in the report. Why"got two children born out of their wedlock? Why not merely the two children (if it were really so, and I am pushing it here only  for argument's sake) born out of wedlock?

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