Look it up in anger

June 16, 2011

I am writing regarding the entry about George Orwell in the online edition of Oxford University Press' A Dictionary of Writers and Their Works. The entry credits Orwell with the authorship of 13 plays that are actually by John Osborne, the adjacent entry. (Most of the plays also appear under Osborne.)

I have sent at least three messages about this error to OUP representatives here in Australia and the UK. None has been acknowledged. I even tracked down someone associated with preparing the work and emailed them personally. However, the error persists in the entry.

Having drawn a blank with the official channels, I am hoping that a mention in THE will get the message to someone who can fix the problem. I assume that I am not the only person left who cares about such things and who is appalled that the OUP's reputation for accuracy apparently means nothing any more. But we know of what assumption is held to be the mother.

Guy Aron, Australia

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