2-Otto-CorrectThe editorial crimes of Otto Correct, underboss of the Internet, are well documented by DamnYouAutoCorrect.

That’s not where we’re going.

Sure, I’ve had my share of beatdowns from Otto. Just the other day he nearly had me email a client to ask, “How did your meeting with the devil go?” Fortunately, at the last second I remembered to pat down Otto, proofing his pockets for insults, obscenities and inanities. Ha! The meeting was with Devin, Otto. D-e-v-i-n. I was right. You were wrong. Live with it.

My particular point is that while Otto’s edits can be embarrassing, he’s almost more dangerous for the way he derails our trains of thought and hijacks conversations.

Google chatting with an architect friend, I typed “What do you know about Eichler?” Otto butted in and replaced the name of Eichler, a developer of mid-century modern homes, with Euchre.

My friend instantly typed back: “Euchre? Isn’t that a card game?”

Faster than I could type nonononono, my friend jumped out of the chat window and Googled off, returning seconds later to report that Euchre is indeed a card game. Eager to be helpful, he also gave me the Wikipedia link and, oh yes, inquired why I was suddenly so interested in Euchre.

By then I was distracted by the semi-interesting coincidence that both Euchre and the card game Pinochle are spelled with a c-h that sounds like a k and was thinking about how long it’s been since I’ve heard of anyone playing Pinochle.

We never got back to Eichler.

Many of Otto’s suggestions seem to be pure whimsy. I was typing micro line—as in, very small fontwhen Otto butted in to suggest micro linen. Exactly what would micro linen be? Itsy napkins for doll houses? Yet there I was, pondering.

Is it not enough that links are compromising our ability to concentrate while reading online, tempting us to drill down like crazed wildcatters, convincing us a real gusher of insights is only one click away?

Certainly Otto has his uses. If he were to become, let’s say, disabled, who would correct me when I misspell? Yesterday he caught me typing “she has more moxy” and generously corrected with moxie. See, Otto, now THAT is helpful. But you could have made the fix without nudging me toward your “improvements” of more money or more poxy.

“She has more poxy?” Seriously, Otto?