I was reading a piece by a blogger who was reviewing some material from a particular industry. The author at a few points in the article made the point that the professionals in the topic industry "weren't trying" and were "making a poor effort" in their chosen field. Unfortunately, the author for the piece littered the article with grammatical mistakes (I stopped counting at 30 in a single post).

Seeing as how these types of mistakes could show that the author was "making a poor effort" I was thinking this could be described as an example of irony but the definitions I found from MW would seem to preclude that.

I felt it was important to get the right description since I am making a commentary about the author's lack of attention to basic English grammar. ;)

  • 2
    An example of Muphry's law Jan 31, 2012 at 12:01
  • Voting to close because OP's example is ironic. Making it "general reference". Jan 31, 2012 at 23:44

2 Answers 2


Definition 3a1 on the page you link to, "incongruity between the actual result of a sequence of events and the normal or expected result", seems to fit: the expected output of someone who complains about poor effort shows signs of good effort.

  • you mean "shows signs of poor effort"?
    – kdmurray
    Jan 31, 2012 at 7:26
  • 2
    @kdmurray, no, I meant what I wrote, I think. The expected output of someone who complains of poor effort shows signs of good effort; that expectation was not fulfilled.
    – msh210
    Jan 31, 2012 at 7:30
  • 2
    right. I really shouldn't do this at 23:30. :P That's probably why the definition didn't seem to fit when I read it on the website.
    – kdmurray
    Jan 31, 2012 at 7:33

My favorite definition of irony: poetic injustice.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.