Testy Copy Editors

Our new website is up and running at testycopyeditors.org. This board will be maintained as an archive. Please visit the new site and register. Direct questions to the proprietor, blanp@testycopyeditors.org
It is currently Mon Jan 18, 2021 5:59 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours




Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 13 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 4:54 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 744
Location: HuskerLand
Could I please get a chorus of testy copy editors' opinions on the preferability of the following choices: "about" versus "approximately" and "said Schmoe" versus "Schmoe said."<p>Is there a rhyme or reason for saying "said" before or after the name? Is there a difference to the reading public between "approximately" and about?" Inquiring minds want to know. Thanks.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 5:19 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 1286
Location: Saranac Lake, N.Y.
I favor "about." It's shorter, more colloquial. <p>And I favor "Schmoe said." Again, it's more colloquial. I might use "said Schmoe" if the name is followed by a long title.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 6:04 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 1775
Location: Baltimore
I prefer "about" to "approximately" in most cases.<p>What troubles me is the increasing use of "roughly." A few days ago I came across "roughly (number) spouse abuse cases." Let's save "roughly" for violence or unevenness.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 7:03 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri May 31, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 87
Location: Calgary, Canada
I would use "approximately" when there is an imprecise calculation involved. If there is no calculation, I would use "about."<p>"The value of pi is approximately 22/7," said Schmoe, who pays careful attention to semantics.<p>Schmoe said he remembers pi having a value of about 3.14.<p>[ September 03, 2003: Message edited by: Dyslexic ]</p>


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 8:14 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Apr 08, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 3135
Location: Albuquerque, N.M. USA
Drop the "that," Dys.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Wed Sep 03, 2003 8:34 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri May 31, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 87
Location: Calgary, Canada
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by jjmoney62:
Drop the "that," Dys.<hr></blockquote><p>Thanks.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Fri Sep 05, 2003 5:58 pm 
Offline

Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2002 1:01 am
Posts: 356
Location: Everett, Wash.
Can't say I can defend it, but "some" bothers me when used for "about," as in "some 50,000 people," or "some 20 businesses." <p>Same goes for "roughly."<p>[ September 05, 2003: Message edited by: JonScribe ]</p>


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Sat Sep 06, 2003 11:11 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sat Sep 06, 2003 12:01 am
Posts: 4
Location: Tampa
I go with "Schmoe said" because I like it when verbs follow subjects. The example I use is "Schmoe ran" not "ran Schmoe." Who or what ran him, and where was he ran? Oh, and why? That's my preference.<p>As for about, yeah, I like that. But I don't have an aversion to approximately.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2003 11:43 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Mar 02, 2003 1:01 am
Posts: 598
Location: The Herald in Everett, WA
Yeah, what's the deal with "roughly"? It's all over our reporters' copy. What happened to good ol' "about"?<p>I don't like "approximately" because it sounds like stilted language lifted right off a police report.<p>I like "Schmoe said" over "said Schmoe" because I like to know WHO said as quickly as possible. Same goes for heds, get the who out before the white-noise word "says."


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2003 12:19 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2002 1:01 am
Posts: 3557
Location: Cusp of retirement, grave or both
I hate "said Schmoe." I change it 50 times a night.<p>Why? Because I can.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2003 8:34 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Apr 18, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 836
Location: New Brunswick, Canada
re: "I would use "approximately" when there is an imprecise calculation involved. If there is no calculation, I would use "about."
"The value of pi is approximately 22/7," said Schmoe, who pays careful attention to semantics.<p>"Schmoe said he remembers pi having a value of about 3.14."<p>I always thought the value of pi was exactly 22/7. The thing is the division goes on indefinitely, so any actual number is always an approximation.


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2003 4:03 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri May 31, 2002 12:01 am
Posts: 87
Location: Calgary, Canada
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by KfitzR:<p>I always thought the value of pi was exactly 22/7. The thing is the division goes on indefinitely, so any actual number is always an approximation.<hr></blockquote><p>As an approximation of pi, 22/7 is accurate to only two decimal places.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Yes, a chance to offer your opinion
PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2003 9:07 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Nov 15, 2002 1:01 am
Posts: 3557
Location: Cusp of retirement, grave or both
I became a copy editor because I hate math. Cut it out, OK?


Top
 Profile E-mail  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Forum locked This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 13 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group

What They're Saying




Useful Links