I suppose I should come forward and say that I was the one who asked TJR to apologize. I'm very impressed with his humble and cordial response. TJR's a good guy and a great potter. I wish my teapots looked as good as his. He's also Canadian, a fine quality in anyone .
My feelings about not pointing out spelling and grammar mistakes come from my experience with languages. I was a classics student for a long time and I'm still an all-around word-nerd. I know my rules well, but after a time, you learn that spelling and grammar are very artificial constructs that have no bearing on artistry, intelligence or the ability to communicate. They are merely indicators of your schooling and skill with words. Shakespeare had a vocabulary of well over 20K words, and invented a significant portion of our modern lexicon. He also is known to have spelled his name five different ways in his own lifetime. His own name!
Not too long ago, a gentleman posted on The Bladesmith's forum inquiring about making a knife for his son with only his limited hand tools. Literally every word was spelled wrong and he used no capitals or punctuation. He likely had the legal minimum of education for his state. But he wanted to learn now. People jumped on him, but the truth was he was perfectly legible, if you bothered to say what he wrote out loud. He didn't need punctuation, he had a built in cadence to provide sense to his words. He was writing in poetry, not prose, poetry. To understand him you needed to read his rhythm and cadence. After everyone had jumped on him, he never posted again. eye wud hav reely lykt to no how his nyf ternd owt eyem sher it wuz grate Very rarely does poor spelling and grammar amount to nonsense.
Then there's the fact that a lot of people have dyslexia and struggle with spelling pathologically--not to mention all the other learning disorders out there. I once knew a perfectly brilliant man who was rendered illiterate because of Reye's syndrome in his childhood. He was physiologically incapable of reading. He had very real cognitive problems because of his illness, but he was an excellent carpenter, machinist and labourer. At 45 he's finally learning to write his numbers with great difficulty--he could read them, but writing them used a part of his brain that he struggled to muster. He was very proud that he painted his house number on his mailbox. You don't need to read to make a pot and some of the most brilliant artists I know aren't the greatest with words. Ann Rice, author of Interview with a Vampire etc. is dyslexic and held off writing because of it.
That said, I'm all for orthography. It's necessary for science and modern communications. To the argument that precise spelling makes search engines easier, I recommend using Google with "site:http://community.ceramicartsdaily.org/" and entering your search terms after that. No offence to the mods/admins, but the IP boards search engine is difficult to use at the best of times, and you need to be actively trying to misspell words to miss a term with Google.
I'm also not so sure language degradation is a bad thing. Bad Latin eventually turned into La Commodia Divina, Don Quixote, Les Miserables, etc. English is past due for a change, IMHO.
I guess my point with all this is to maybe ask everyone to think about where their preoccupations with spelling and grammar come from, and what they really mean. My own feeling is that unless you're a teacher in a classroom teaching students, or you're helping someone achieve some sort of goal (resume, essay, publication, etc.), or you feel you're helping someone, it's unfounded. I can think of at least three teachers I've known (one a neighbour, one a professor for whom I worked, and one who taught me) who used pointing out spelling and grammar mistakes as a way to cover up their own insecurities. Google the phrase "sine nobilitate," and read about what holding someone to an arbitrary standard can do.
I hope none of this offends anyone or comes across as accusatory. These are simply my feelings on the subject.