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Sans slash

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Topic: 2) Sans slash (1 of 2), Read 57 times
Conf: Word Fugitives, with Barbara Wallraff
From: Barbara Wallraff (msgrammar@theatlantic.com)
Date: Wednesday, September 22, 1999 09:01 AM

Steven Donaghy, of Vancouver, B.C., writes: "We really need a new word to replace the awkward 'and/or' conjoined conjunction. It seems that we're missing a whole world of possibilities because the 'and/or' beast is ungraceful to use. The new word could be something like 'anor' or 'pho.' 'This new policy will affect all home and/or office computer users' would become 'This new policy will affect all home anor office computer users.'"

Note to Steven: "Pho"? Do tell.

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Topic: 2) Sans slash (2 of 2), Read 47 times
Conf: Word Fugitives, with Barbara Wallraff
From: Joss Randall (joss@yahoo.com)
Date: Thursday, September 23, 1999 04:24 PM

I rather like and/or myself. But if one must change, why "anal"?

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Topic: Sans Slash (1 of 2), Read 24 times
Conf: Word Fugitives, with Barbara Wallraff
From: Audrey Lengel (alengel@rmhgroup.com)
Date: Tuesday, September 28, 1999 08:46 PM

I'm with Steven that "and/or" is awkward and inelegant, and I can't say I'm a huge fan. But I can live with it when it's properly used. More and more, though, people use it when either "and" OR "or" would be the appropriate word.

To me, "and/or" connotes a certain ambiguity. Steven's example "This new policy will affect all home and/or office computer users" suggests the real implication of the policy isn't known. It may affect home computer users and office computer users OR it may affect only one -- and which one isn't known. If the policy will affect both (suggested by the modifier "all"), "and" should be used.

I've noticed when editing others' writing that most authors generally mean one or the other, but use "and/or" because everyone else does. I don't think we need a new word, just less of this imprecise and clumsy phrase.


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Topic: Sans Slash (2 of 2), Read 28 times
Conf: Word Fugitives, with Barbara Wallraff
From: Barbara Wallraff (msgrammar@theatlantic.com)
Date: Thursday, September 30, 1999 04:04 PM

That's a good point, Audrey. In fact, in the example who needs the "home and/or office" part at all? "All computer users" is better, no?

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Topic: Sans slash (1 of 2), Read 18 times
Conf: Word Fugitives, with Barbara Wallraff
From: Lee Giguere (lgiguere@snet.net)
Date: Saturday, October 02, 1999 09:26 PM

Most often, there's no need to write and/or. One word or the other word by itself seems to do, and is much less awkward.

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Topic: Sans slash (2 of 2), Read 14 times
Conf: Word Fugitives, with Barbara Wallraff
From: Jewel Forga (jeforga2@aol.com)
Date: Sunday, October 10, 1999 04:10 AM

EITHER?
JEWEL E. FORGA

Topic: Drop the slash (1 of 1)
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Topic: Drop the slash (1 of 1), Read 20 times
Conf: Word Fugitives, with Barbara Wallraff
From: Edward Craig (epcraig@efn.org)
Date: Saturday, October 02, 1999 10:33 AM

So why not just drop the slash, thus: "andor"? Except as a name of a kingdom in Tolkein's "Lord of the Rings", it doesn't pre-exist in English.


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