What’s the difference between proofreading and editing?
People often get confused between proofreading and editing, or they just assume that they’re the same thing. However there are some significant differences between them.
Proofreading focuses on correcting the noticeable errors in a text, such as the spelling, punctuation or grammar.
Editing is the process of revising a text to make it clearer, more structured, or give it better readability.
The examples below will help to explain this more clearly.
Proofreading example 1
Before proofreading: ‘The buoy and them dog ran a cross the park.’
After proofreading: ‘The boy and the dog ran across the park.’
Editing example 1
Before editing: ‘The boy and the dog ran across the park.’
After editing: ‘The boy ran across the park as quickly as he could. The dog ran with him, leaving tiny paw prints in the snow.’
Notes on proofreading example 1
As you can see, before proofreading the sentence, it made no sense. However, after correcting the errors it’s now much clearer. Something that’s important to note, is that none of the words were spelt incorrectly and therefore they were not flagged up by the spellchecker. This is something that we constantly preach about at Clearer Copy, the spellchecker is never enough when you’re proofreading and editing because words can be spelt correctly but used in the wrong context.
Notes on editing example 1
Before the text was edited it was very simple, and not very descriptive. However, with just a couple of tweaks you can see that it has been improved, while still keeping the most important information in the text.
So now you know, proofreading and editing are two very different things. If your copy could benefit from proofreading or editing, then check out our packages here.