After some chatter in my comments (chatter in my comments – is that like a party in my pants?) concerning the erratic and amusing miss-use of quotation marks, I made a discovery in town.
Close to my work I snapped this photo showing the concept in all its glory.
For the Englishophiles, the text basically says:
“Worlds best” sweets!
The idea with these quotation marks is obviously to “tone down” the meaning of the “world’s best” part. As in:
“We are saying ‘World’s best’ but of course we both know that isn’t true, but we’ll say it anyway, for a laugh. And to avoid being sued we’ll just add the quotes. Done!”
But it doesn’t actually “tone down” the meaning of the phrase at all; what it does is to make it completely ironic and have it mean the opposite to what the person is intending.
Hence the hilarity.
Quotes can also be incorrectly and hilariously used to emphasise something. In this case the person is assuming that quotes are the same thing as italics, bold or underline, the more standard ways to emphasise a point in a text. But again, it just makes the whole thing tragically funny.
You want more? YOU WANT MORE?
Well you got it. Here at the wonderful world of unnecessary quotation marks you can lose yourself in examples of missplaced quotes and reversed meanings.
It’s funny; trust me!