No, this is not a question reporting pluralization bugs, I don't really care about them and I don't think they're real bugs...

Jeff Atwood pluralization 'bug'

But, I'm very curious to know why is the Stack Exchange team ignoring them? Is it fun to keep receiving useless 's' complaint bugs or many meta questions about them? Maybe it is some kind of trolling? Maybe the team doesn't want to add an additional if-else loop to keep the code running fast?

You don't really want to say the team is too lazy to fix them, it doesn't make sense. So, what is the real story of pluralization?

To those who don't know what I'm talking about, here is a screenshot:

Pluralization Bug Example

  • "useless 's' complaint bugs" -- there you go
    – random
    Jul 18, 2014 at 12:56
  • 4
    @random This really doesn't answer anything. I personally would not consider them "useless" - proper grammar and spelling, of which this is a small part of, is very useful to maintaining a professional atmosphere. Jul 18, 2014 at 14:25
  • @SouthpawHare, well said.
    – My Name
    Jul 18, 2014 at 14:26
  • Question said they were useless. If you read the linked, it's "why fix this twice?" @sou
    – random
    Jul 18, 2014 at 14:29
  • 19
    FYI, this still counts. Expect your doorbell to ring very soon.
    – user1228
    Jul 18, 2014 at 14:37
  • 2
    @georgechalhoub: Just like a chalhoub. Brings a gun to an S fight.
    – user1228
    Jul 18, 2014 at 14:46
  • 8
    @georgechalhoub Presumably, they aren't thrilled to be reminded of their giant S shaped scars.
    – Tim Post
    Jul 19, 2014 at 11:16
  • 7
    Downvoting has no rules, merely suggestions
    – random
    Jul 19, 2014 at 15:06
  • 1
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because as this meme has been officially deprecated, questions about it are no longer relevant. Aug 3, 2019 at 18:47

1 Answer 1


But, I'm very curious to know why is the Stack Exchange team ignoring them?

We aren't. Sure, they're low-priority bugs, but nevertheless they're bugs.

Regarding Jeff's tweet, you should know two things:

  1. Although you can never be 100% sure, I am pretty certain that it was tongue-in-cheek. To the best of my knowledge, Jeff has yet to personally come to anyone's house with a giant bludgeoning S.

  2. That tweet, as is visible in your screenshot, is from February of 2009. At that point, Stack Overflow was half a year old and as such had much more pressing things to work on, and it only had two programmers (Jeff himself and Jarrod).

Jeff is also known for calling non-ASCII letters "crazy moon language", but that doesn't mean we've decided to ignore anything unicode-related until the end of time. And this closes a circle, because it gave birth to the name of our localization engine, "Moonspeak". And Moonspeak has pretty sophisticated functionality for handling plurals, including support for languages that have more than two grammatical numbers (e.g. two of a thing and three of a thing use different words).

  • 44
    Q: I'm trying to get in touch with Jeff Atwood, I have an idea that I'm sure he'd .. A: Just report a pluralization bug and put on some coffee. It's one of our official responses.
    – Tim Post
    Jul 19, 2014 at 11:15
  • 2
    Does Moonspeak supports a language where masculine and feminine plurals got different wording? Oct 12, 2014 at 19:48
  • 5
    @ShadowWizard That's not really a property of the translation engine. When it comes to plurals, the word is known at translation time. The number is what's unknown until runtime.
    – balpha StaffMod
    Oct 13, 2014 at 5:04
  • I will tick this answer since the bug seems to be gone :)
    – My Name
    Apr 16, 2015 at 5:01

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