What Is the World Coming to,

when a man can't even use the word somdomite without prompting the innuendo that this was an inadvertent error? Give me some credit, folks.

Poor spelling has become so common that my first assumption when I see something like that is that it was an error. Heck, even the HSBC add directly to the right of this post identifies their website as "" (and the top link on that page is to BoA checking, to boot).
1.11.2006 1:41pm
Steve Lubet (mail):
As long as we're being pedantic, let me correct Dr. Weevil. There were indeed three trials of Oscar Wilde, but only the first was for libel -- which Wilde withdrew when it became apparent that Queensberry would succeed in his defense of "justification." Wilde was subsequently prosecuted twice for gross indecency. The first trial ended when the jury could not agree on a verdict. The second trial was a conviction.
1.11.2006 2:39pm
Bob Bobstein (mail):
What, have you just been stewing about this for the last couple days, Prof. Volokh, and couldn't hold it in any longer??? :)

yeah, smileys are kinda annoying, but how else can you convey an intended light tone? Plus, if I were really trying to be a jerk and make fun of Prof. Volokh, I'd avoid closing the small text tag...
1.11.2006 2:41pm
Dr. Weevil (mail) (www):
Thanks for the correction, SL. It's been a while since I read The Trials of Oscar Wilde, so I should have checked.

In fact, I was just politely offering a graceful out to EV, since I thought he'd most likely made the same mistake as Queensberry independently. I hope he doesn't have a prizefighter accompany him everywhere to threaten those who annoy him, as Queensberry did (have a pet prizefighter, I mean, not annoy EV). Miscopying So-Dom as Som-Dom is an easy error, what textual critics call assimilation by anticipation. (How's that for pedantry?)

By an odd coincidence, the three trials of Alger Hiss followed the same pattern as Wilde's. He foolishly sued Whittaker Chambers for slander, and the evidence Chambers offered in defense led directly to two criminal prosecutions of Hiss for perjury, the first a hung jury, the second a conviction.
1.12.2006 9:10pm