Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Username

jayles

Member Since

August 12, 2010

Total number of comments

748

Total number of votes received

183

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Latest Comments

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 8:10pm

Ngram must be a very blunt instrument indeed as I still can't get "My family are" to top "My family is" , just lots of "noise" on the former and seemingly rare true instances of family with a plural verb.

/books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=My+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2CMy+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012%2CMy+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2CMy family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 3:22pm

@WW thank you ; that just about wraps it up as far as I'm concerned.
Not surprised results for "Each family are" are spurious ; I really expected zero when I keyed it in.

Couldn’t Care Less

  • May 19, 2014, 3:17pm

Perhaps the bit about sports commentators was not clear: I meant that just because one can point to a few examples or a particular usage does not prove that it is normal or standard; one needs to establish that the usage is common, widespread, and substantial.

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 6:19am

I'm really only interested in what is acceptable in formal writing; specifically for IELTS academic purposes.

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 3:50am

Well I haven't seen a transatlantic split in usage yet: all I seem to get is a minumum 3:1 ratio in favor of collective noun+singular verb.

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 3:47am

books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=this+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthis+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthis+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2Cthis+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1920&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Cthis family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bthis Family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 3:43am

books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=each+family+is%3Aeng_us_2012%2Ceach+family+are%3Aeng_us_2012%2Ceach+family+is%3Aeng_gb_2012%2Ceach+family+are%3Aeng_gb_2012&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1920&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Ceach family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Beach family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEach family is%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Ceach family are%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Ceach family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Beach family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEach family is%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Ceach family are%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 3:39am

Just looking at the results for "pair of * is,pair of * are" and "pair of * was, pair of * were" on ngrams and there doesn't seem to be a preponderance of either singular or plural, or any marked us/gb split. Does this mean that prima facie they don't "naturally" take a plural?
"the couple is" also outnumbers "the couple are" 2:1, which suggests that a plural verb may be less than automatic.

books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=each+couple+is%2Ceach+couple+are%2Cthis+couple+is%2C+this+couple+are%2C+every+couple+is%2Cevery+couple+are&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1920&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Ceach couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Beach couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEach couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Ceach couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthis couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthis couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThis couple are%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cevery couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bevery couple is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BEvery couple is%3B%2Cc0

Team names — singular or plural

  • May 19, 2014, 12:36am

"the crowd goes wild" outnumbers "the crowd go wild" 9:1


books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=the+crowd+goes+wild%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthe+crowd+go+wild%3Aeng_us_2012%2Cthe+crowd+goes+wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%2Cthe+crowd+go+wild%3Aeng_gb_2012&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t4%3B%2Cthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bthe Crowd Goes Wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Cthe crowd go wild%3Aeng_us_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThe crowd goes wild%3Aeng_gb_2012%3B%2Cc0

Couldn’t Care Less

  • May 19, 2014, 12:16am

@HS you are so right!
Often it's a question of what is "standard" or "normally used" in business, professional, academic, published writing, although some magazines are deliberately written for a teenage market in a more conversational style. Publishers' in-house style guides give an insight.
The fact that a couple of sports commentators are using it does not make it suddenly normal or standard, though in a sense part of their job is to create new and exciting language, so it's not automatically "wrong" either.
The ABs will deal to "the English" down your way and later at Twickenham.