[ExI] extropy-chat Digest, Vol 216, Issue 27

Ben Zaiboc ben at zaiboc.net
Thu Sep 16 21:55:38 UTC 2021

On 16/09/2021 19:50, Anton Sherwood wrote:
>> On Thu, Sep 16, 2021 at 4:16 AM Anton Sherwood wrote:
>>     You mean "composed".
>>     «comprise» and «compose» are roughly reciprocals, not synonyms.
> On 2021-9-16 06:26, Dave Sill via extropy-chat wrote:
>> Let's not be grammar nazis. We all knew what John meant.
> I wrote the above not because John used the word (I'll usually let 
> that go) but because he defended that usage by someone else.
> Yes, by all means let's use any old word that more or less resembles 
> what we mean, everyone will know what we mean.  We may as well say 
> "give" when we mean "take", because context will prevent any 
> confusion, right?  Until there's a context in which two different 
> meanings will fit, and we can't use words to distinguish between them 
> because, hey, a dictionary says it's just fine to use them in either 
> sense.  Wouldn't want to be stuffy or anything. 

To me, the point here is encapsulated by Anton's comment "you lost me 
at...". I sympathise with that. Sloppy grammar betrays sloppy thinking, 
and why waste your time on a sloppy thinker?

Bad grammar (and spelling, but that's another matter...) puts me off, 
and I'm reluctant to spend time reading something written by someone who 
seems semi-literate. Unless there's a compelling reason to read on (John 
C Clark being a case in point), I often don't. I'm not a grammar nazi, 
quite the opposite, I'm glad when people help me decide whether to spend 
time reading what they write or not.


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