Think the Straits Times is the premier English language broadsheet in Singapore, JB, ... and some say Batam? Think again…
Trodding the path (Straits Times, Aug 24, 2007)? Goodness, no: make it treading. This is an irregular verb with the forms tread, treads, trod, treading, and trodden. Hence:
Pat tries to tread carefully. (to-infinitive; base form)
Pat treads carefully. (present tense)
Pat trod carefully. (simple past)
Pat is treading carefully this time. (present continuous/progressive)
Pat has trodden carefully this time. (present perfect)
Pat shunned the well-trodden path. (–en participle as adjective)
His daughter, whom was now holidaying in South Africa (Straits Times, Aug 16, 2007)? Wrong. Make it: … his daughter, who he pointed out was now holidaying in South Africa.
News have been making headlines (Straits Times, Aug 25, 2007)? Do we say The news are brought to you by the BBC or No news are good news?
Surely not. Make it has and is, since news is a non-count (uncountable) noun and hence always singular. News is, therefore, like information, furniture and equipment.
So, is the Straits Times the world-class broadsheet that it claims to be? And is it in any position to help ordinary Singaporeans ‘speak good English’, when it can’t even get primary school-level grammar right?