Grammar/Spelling/Syntax/English lessons

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by j, May 12, 2006.

  1. j

    j (stands for Jerk) Admin

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    Reviving another lost thread.

    The lesson for the day is parallel sentence construction. I see this all the time, and it's mildly annoying but mainly distracting. You don't want your syntax to be distracting! This is a bad thing.

    I don't know how to explain it using all the correct terminology, so I will provide a common example.

    A is as good -- if not better -- than B. (WRONG)
    A is as good as -- if not better than -- B. (Right)

    Can you see why?

    A is as good than B? No. A is as good as B, if not better than B.
     


  2. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    The last time I added my list to the now lost thread, the forum crashed.
     


  3. Bouji

    Bouji Senior member

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    When one does not use commas after concluding words and the word "˜which', 99% of the time there should be one after such words, so often people under use commas, it is somewhat annoying.

    For example, after the following words:
    Therefore
    So
    Thus
    However
     


  4. skalogre

    skalogre Senior member

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    Uh oh. I never really formally learned English grammar and syntax so I will try hiding for the time being [​IMG]
     


  5. faustian bargain

    faustian bargain Senior member

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    X is different than Y. - wrong X is different from Y. - right
     


  6. faustian bargain

    faustian bargain Senior member

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    When one does not use commas after concluding words and the word "˜which', 99% of the time there should be one after such words, so often people under use commas, it is somewhat annoying. For example, after the following words: Therefore So Thus However
    the rule i learned about that is that it depends whether the clause following the 'however' is short or simple enough. maybe less than 99%, but more than 66%. i think the british tend to leave off the comma more than USAians though.
     


  7. johnapril

    johnapril Senior member

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    data is plural
     


  8. faustian bargain

    faustian bargain Senior member

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    so is media also phenomena, although that is misused for slightly different reasons than 'data' and 'media'.
     


  9. dah328

    dah328 Senior member

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    When one does not use commas after concluding words and the word "˜which', 99% of the time there should be one after such words, so often people under use commas, it is somewhat annoying.
    Seeing as how this is the grammar thread, I have to say that's some interesting sentence construction there -- dependent clause, comma, independent clause, comma, coordinating conjunction, independent clause, comma, independent clause.
     


  10. skalogre

    skalogre Senior member

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    My pet peeve. Why do newscasters in the USA say "This is the news?"
    Whatever happenned to the distinction between plural and singular? I mean, come on! It is your JOB for heaven's sake!
     


  11. Kent Wang

    Kent Wang Affiliate Vendor Dubiously Honored Affiliate Vendor

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    A comma is always used before 'etc.' right?
     


  12. Margaret

    Margaret Senior member

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    A comma is always used before 'etc.' right?

    Usually. Though in your post, you should have used one after. [​IMG]
     


  13. Fabienne

    Fabienne Senior member

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    My pet peeve. Why do newscasters in the USA say "This is the news?"
    Whatever happenned to the distinction between plural and singular? I mean, come on! It is your JOB for heaven's sake!


    I believe the word news is actually singular, despite its Old French origins being plural. Any native speakers around?
     


  14. SGladwell

    SGladwell Senior member

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    so is media.

    While data is obvious, I always thought that treating "media" as a plural was outside of Standard American English. I know I was hounded for it in high school. Now, "the media are...." sounds strange to me, whereas "the media is..." sounds right.

    Every time I hear "the data says" my skin crawls, though.
     


  15. Margaret

    Margaret Senior member

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    While data is obvious, I always thought that treating "media" as a plural was outside of Standard American English. I know I was hounded for it in high school. Now, "the media are...." sounds strange to me, whereas "the media is..." sounds right.

    Every time I hear "the data says" my skin crawls, though.


    I'm pretty sure that if "the media" is used as a reference to the collective institution (i.e. journalists as a whole), it should be treated as singular. If you're referring to various distinct types of media (e.g., newspapers, television and radio -- or Cassette, VHS and BETA, for that matter), then it's plural.
     


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