There, their and they’re – there’s nothing to it!

My article earlier in the week about the difference between ‘affect’ and ‘effect’ garnered a couple of comments from readers, which was very nice.

Particularly as they were both complimentary.

One of them however, contained a heartfelt plea for me to: “rid the world of the incorrect use of ‘there’, ‘their’ and ‘they’re’“.

Well, I’m not sure I can promise to do exactly that, but it did get me to thinking, And as I have been pondering for a while what kind of articles I should include on the site, I decided that a series on the importance of accurate English might be useful.

But in the spirit of Just the right words, I wanted to make it a little different. Quirky, with a dash of creativity.

So here’s my response to the distinction between these three, in the form of a poem:

There, their, they’re – don’t despair!

There are quite a lot of people who really do not care
a jot about the difference between there, their and they’re.
They couldn’t give a monkey’s that their slap-dash approach
causes groans of disbelief and murmurs of reproach.

Oblivious and arrogant they drive us to despair,
when it comes to being accurate they’re simply laissez-faire.
They plough on making blunders without the least regard
for how it makes us others feel. It isn’t even hard!

‘There’ is geographical, referring to a place
Or use it with the verb to be, as in ‘there is your face’.
‘Their’ with an i is used to indicate possession
so their mistake to spell it ‘there’ is quite an indiscretion.

And they’re is ‘they are’ shortened; what is known as a contraction
To use that one instead of ‘there’ drives people to distraction.
So now there can be no excuse. Please pass this on to share
a way of being accurate with there, their and they’re.


Simple as that.
There, their and they're - not the same T shirt

Been there, (not their or they're) got the T-shirt

7 thoughts on “There, their and they’re – there’s nothing to it!

  1. Thanks Janna – I’m glad you liked it. If I can help a few of those people who get it wrong to be able to start getting it right, and make a few of those who get irritated by it smile, I’ll be happy!

    • Thank you kind sir, I’m glad you liked it. Though of course I can’t claim any credit other than for deciding to use the photo to illustrate the article.

      Nice of you to stop by – I’ve checked out your blog and I’m impressed. I’ll be back to read some more. Keep writing – I’m sure you’ll have your book advertised on the site one day!

    • Thanks Jacey – it is pretty cool isn’t it. Might just have to invest in one of those. And if the poem doesn’t work I’ll just have to wear it until people start to take notice. Or run away!

      Really glad you liked the poem – there are a lot more (better) ones on my poetry blog at:

      I’m glad you dropped by – I’ve been to see your blog now and I like it. I’ll be back for more – looks like some intriguing stuff on there, and I really like the design too. It’s great that posting stuff here is helping me to find other writers like you. Keep up the good work …



  2. There, their, they’re . . . You are the Savlon and fabric plaster of inappropriate word use.

    Nice website, bro.

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