|Subject: Even within a Language you can look barbaric.|
Posted Mar 27, 2012 by shagbark
If you look under Most Recent Edited entries in classic goo
you will read:
These are all the Edited Entries to which this Researcher has contributed. They obviously read the Writing Guidelines and submitted their Guide Entries to Peer Review: why don't you too?
starting from the back of the paragraph. why don't you too? would be better as Why not do likewise? or You too, can do it. notice I am not ending the sentence with too.
Just before that is a colon which would better be a full stop (period)
Also notice in two sentences theree are eleven Capitol Letters.
Finally, the second sentence has plural pronouns pointing back to a singular researcher.
No wonder it looks like a barbarian wrote that paragraph.
This is a most excellent point, Shagbark.
Could you give me a link? I'm not a goo-user, and am easily confused.
Then I'll go bug Gnomon about this.
Never mind. I found what you were referring to.
Aha. I have located the party to whom the complaint was supposed to be referred. I have referred it. (Guide Editors can't change that part.)
Thanks for taking an interest.
OK, taking your points in order...
"why don't you too? would be better as Why not do likewise? "
-- not in British English. "Why don't you too?" is perfectly good English. "Why not do likewise?" is stilted and uses an old-fashioned word (likewise) which hasn't been popular since the 19th Century.
"notice I am not ending the sentence with too." -- I've noticed that, since you've pointed it out. But I've no idea why you think it worth remarking on. There is no prohibition on ending a sentence with "too", nor has there ever been. You may be confusing this with the ridiculous statement that some people thought was a rule in the past, that you should not end a sentence in "to". This was never a rule either, but was thought to be one by some pedants.
"Also notice in two sentences theree are eleven Capitol Letters." -- there's no harm in capitals if they are used as titles, which they are in this case.
"Finally, the second sentence has plural pronouns pointing back to a singular researcher. " -- it uses a gender-unspecific third person, which is always stated in the plural. This is good grammar.
"No wonder it looks like a barbarian wrote that paragraph." -- It's not good form to criticise other people's grammar. Particularly when there's nothing wrong with it.
I don't mind ending a sentence in 'too'. I do it all the time. But me, I'd have used a comma. Is that not normal in British English? (Inquiring minds want to know.)
I don't really know. It doesn't feel right to put a comma before the too.
You'd have to in the US. Your English teacher would get mad if you didn't.
US English teachers appear to be sticklers for "good grammar". We're much more relaxed on this side of the Atlantic.
That's a good point. You're probably right there. It might be overcompensation on the part of US English teachers: lots of people here come from a non-native-speaking background.
While that was really evident back in the dark ages when I went to school, I think it's still true.
I get comments and feedback on my writing from much younger editors, and they are still sticklers for such fairly arbitrary rules as not starting sentences with 'but'. Now, these 'rules' can be rather annoying. But (heh-heh) when you're writing to order, you have to figure out what the customer wants, so if that's the requirement, you go along.
For the last six weeks, I've been writing to two different stylesheets on a daily basis. Sometimes I get a comment, 'We don't say it this way,' and think 'Oops. That's h2g2.'
I think the take-home message is that, while a lot of the 'rules' are fictitious, what we want to do is make our readers comfortable. Hang the rules. What you want to do is to be clear, and (one hopes) entertaining.
The question for me is not, 'Does that match a rule?' but 'Is it clear?' If it isn't, well, write around it.
On the other hand, US editors under 40 are allergic to compound-complex sentences...
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