Re: Resumes and SMEs, Years v. Years'

Subject: Re: Resumes and SMEs, Years v. Years'
From: Elna Tymes <etymes -at- LTS -dot- COM>
Date: Wed, 26 Feb 1997 12:16:02 -0800

Kevin Montgomery wrote:
> ...should it be years' or years?

Unbelievable! First that someone would make a hire/no hire decision
based on the mistaken assumption that there should/should not be an
apostrophe in this place, and second that people don't understand the
difference between possessive use and 'apologetic' use of apostrophes.

A case can be made that the missing word is "of," as in "two years of
experience," in which case no apostrophe is needed. However, as
guardians of the English language, which writers sometimes are, we need
to be aware of the fact that this is a dynamic language, with
dictionaries and style guides reflecting appropriate CURRENT usage, not
rules which may have been in effect 20 or more years ago and have since
been superceded.

I wouldn't consider working for a pubs manager who became incensed over
the (WRONG) notion that "two year's experience" is the only
grammatically correct form of that expression. Based on my 30-some
years in this business, clearly that person is far more concerned with
form than substance.

Elna Tymes, president
Los Trancos Systems

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