Your or You’re

Your or You’re

Every day I see so many instances of bad spelling, grammar and punctuation, and it makes me feel sad.

Why?  Because the majority of people who write the wrong word just don’t have a clue that it’s wrong.  They’ve never been taught the differences between words which sound the same but are in fact spelt differently.

Today I received an email from a company who’s trying to encourage me to use their services.  The very first sentence of their mass-mailing [which probably went out to hundreds if not thousands of people] used the wrong word. Here it is here:

Your about to find out the best tip you’ll ever hear!

Can you see what’s wrong with the word “your” in the example above?

If you guessed that it should be “you’re“, you’re correct! Give yourself a big pat on the back!


You’re about to find out the best tip you’ll ever hear!


The company wants to say, “You are [you’re] about to find out the best tip you’ll ever hear! …” but they chose the wrong spelling.

Many people tell me all they have to do is use a Spell Checker when they type, and they never make mistakes.  This always makes me smile, for the reason shown above – if YOU don’t know which spelling to use, how will a computer?  All the Spell Checker does is check to see that each word is spelt correctly – it doesn’t check for HOW the word is used, unless you have a program which does that.

If you DO have a program which offers you choices for the spelling, would YOU know which one to choose – YOUR or YOU’RE?

If not, then all you need to do is understand when to use the apostrophe.  Use it to show the omission of letters, in this case, the a of are.   If you start to think about all of this, you will soon be able to tell WHEN and HOW to use an apostrophe, and you’ll make me very, very happy!  🙂

Other apostrophe examples showing omission of letters

She’s [she is] such a great artist!”

You’re [you are] an excellent cook!”

He’s [he is] a fine car mechanic.”

You’re [you are] on the right road, just turn left at the next traffic lights!”

They’re [they are] going to miss the concert if they don’t hurry!

“Those shoes you’re [you are] wearing look so comfortable.”

We’ll [we will] be the first in line if we leave now!”

Practice a few sentences like this and see if you can get the apostrophe to appear in the right place.

So – do you know now he difference between YOUR and YOU’RE?

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