Re: Yet one more - really need an explanation for this one

Subject: Re: Yet one more - really need an explanation for this one
From: Patricia Egan <capdev -dot- communications -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "Pinkham, Jim" <Jim -dot- Pinkham -at- voith -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 21 May 2009 06:41:58 -0700

Re: "were" versus "are"

I am finding that certain legal departments are requiring the use of present
tense, primarily to avoid "forward-looking statements." I have not been
required to change past tense to present, but the use of present tense
permeates the documents.

Pat

On Thu, May 21, 2009 at 6:31 AM, Pinkham, Jim <Jim -dot- Pinkham -at- voith -dot- com> wrote:

> Without exploring the grammar too closely, you have a question of
> tenses. Strictly speaking, with the syntax and punctuation given here,
> IMHO, the first is correct and the second is not. Neither is
> particularly good, and the writing again reflects a penchant for
> passives. If you really want to have a more present feel to the second
> sentence, you could say "have been" rather than "are," but I don't know
> that this any less clunky.
>
> I'd prefer something more along the lines of:
>
> The ongoing development of XX Systems reflects more than 10 years of
> research.
>
> OR
>
> With more than a decade of continuous research and development, XX
> Systems.... [ACTIVE VERB] [STATE BENEFIT/SO WHAT?/WHO CARES? MESSAGE].
>
> E.g., "Incorporating more than a decade of ongoing research and
> development, XX Systems offers unrivaled ability to map your courier
> routes for optimal delivery times, minimum traffic delays, and optimum
> fuel efficiency."
>
> In other words, the sentence itself needs work, and the message
> underlying the statement will drive how you rewrite it. If there is no
> reason for telling us the product incorporates more than 10 years of
> research, of course, then we're in trouble! :)
>
> HTH,
> Jim
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: techwr-l-bounces+jim -dot- pinkham=voith -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+jim.pinkham <techwr-l-bounces%2Bjim.pinkham>=
> voith -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On
> Behalf Of Deborah Hemstreet
> Sent: Wednesday, May 20, 2009 11:06 AM
> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Yet one more - really need an explanation for this one
>
>
> Hi All,
>
> I have a sentence that reads:
>
> XX Systems were developed based on over 10 years of research ...
>
> The client wants:
>
> XX Systems *are *developed based on over 10 years of research ...
>
> I am certain that "are" is incorrect here, but don't know how to explain
> this. Can you help?
>
> Thanks
>
> Deborah
>
> http://www.tech-challenged.com
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--
Patricia Egan
P. O. Box 194391
San Francisco, CA 94119-4391
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

ComponentOne Doc-To-Help 2009 is your all-in-one authoring and publishing
solution. Author in Doc-To-Help's XML-based editor, Microsoft Word or
HTML and publish to the Web, Help systems or printed manuals.
http://www.doctohelp.com

Help & Manual 5: The complete help authoring tool for individual
authors and teams. Professional power, intuitive interface. Write
once, publish to 8 formats. Multi-user authoring and version control! http://www.helpandmanual.com/

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Follow-Ups:

References:
GUI Elements defined: From: Bruce Megan (ST-CO/ENG2.2)
Re: GUI Elements defined: From: Gregory P Sweet
Re: GUI Elements defined: From: Chris Morton
Grammar (again!): From: Deborah Hemstreet
Yet one more - really need an explanation for this one: From: Deborah Hemstreet
RE: Yet one more - really need an explanation for this one: From: Pinkham, Jim

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