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  1. #1
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    Default this noun phrase

    Is it possible to analyze this noun phrase, our company's policy as our + company's policy(company policy) or our company's + policy(the policy of our company) ? Is there a meaning difference?


    However, I feel like there is a meaning difference in analyzing a company's policy as a company's + policy or a + company's policy.

    I know it is a really silly question but I think knowing this is really important to me now, so please help me again.
    Last edited by sky3120; 13-Feb-2012 at 13:14.

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: this noun phrase

    What difference do you feel there is?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: this noun phrase

    To be honest, I do not feel any difference between our+ company's policy and our company's+ policy, but when I learned English in school, meaning has to be different as modifying changes. However, I can feel that there is for sure a meaning difference between a company's + policy and a + company's policy, meaning the policy of a company( one company among a lot of companys in the world) and one of the company's policys respectively. What do you think about it?


    Come to think of it....the menaing of "our company" is that owners share one company? Then, can't I say "my school" unless I found or buy the school? I am getting crazy. Please just tell me what you think about the different ways of analyzing anytime.
    Last edited by sky3120; 13-Feb-2012 at 14:42.

  4. #4
    susiedq is offline Member
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    Default Re: this noun phrase

    Usually it's termed: company policy.

    Our company policy is to promote from within.

    (I hope that didn't confuse you even more)

  5. #5
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: this noun phrase

    You can say my school even though you don't own it- attending, teaching, working or sending your children there are enough to use the possessive. Also, our company doesn't necessarily mean more than one owner- two employees of a company could talk about our company when there's only one owner. Indeed, a sole owner could talk to staff about our company- working for a company is enough again to use the possessive.

    Secondly, the phrase you are worrying about would come in a wider context- no one is going to rush into a room and shout out this phrase and leave you to wonder. The wider context would tell you whether this was a general policy or an individual policy, or one company or one policy.

    Ambiguity often doesn't matter, but when it is important to be clear, we sidestep the ambiguous phrase and use something clearer:
    One company has a policy...
    The company has a policy...
    One policy the company has...
    Etc

    Also, remember that you can put a phrase through the harshest grammar torture, but it won't necessarily tell you what you want to hear. However, if you put it in its natural environment - text/context - things are often much clearer.

    PS I agree with Susiedq about using company policy .

  6. #6
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    Default Thanks.

    I will never forget your advice. The reason I am thinking this way is to make myself be able to think the way native English speakers do. Anyhow, you people here are really helpful and great!!. Thanks a million again.

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