Yesterday, I was stunned to read an Associated Press story that cited "more evidence that the most worst recession since the 1930s was losing its grip on the global economy." Here's one example of the story.
I was stunned, not by the idea that the recession might be ending, but by the lack of copy editing. Since when did the AP give up on correcting egregious errors like "most worst" anything? I have a lot of respect for the AP and I sure as heck don't want to annoy them by pointing out their flaws. If you've done any work in PR you know that AP stories frequently get repeated in hundreds of newspapers and on thousands of sites all over the Internet. Getting your product or company mentioned in an AP story is a PR milestone.
But it's this mass replication that worries me when it comes to declining standards in copy editing. Right now a Google search for "most worst recession" returns over 51,000 hits and I'm betting most of those hits are that AP article. How long before students routinely refer to the current recession as the most worst?