Re: Multiple options for action?

Subject: Re: Multiple options for action?
From: Heli Roosild <HeliR -at- MSMAILHQ -dot- NETIMAGE -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 18 Oct 1995 13:35:00 PDT

Brian wrote:

> "Select New from the File menu, or click the New icon in the toolbar,
> or press Ctrl+N."

>An editor has crossed out the "or" before the second option. I want to
keep it.

As someone else said, clarity is most important here. Most people reading a
series assume "and" to be the conjunction between the elements until they
explicitly are told otherwise (when they reach "or"). If the first "or" is
missing, many readers will have to re-read (or at least re-think) the
sentence--and that is Not Good. Hence, I believe you are right on target in
wanting to keep the first "or."

I too would prefer bullets or another way of making the choices more
visible. But if your style does constrain you to a single
sentence/paragraph structure, you might consider using semi-colons instead
of commas; they will emphasize the separateness and equality of the elements
in the series. But do keep the "or."

Just MHO of course.

Heli L. Roosild
helir -at- msmailhq -dot- netimage -dot- com

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