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    #1

    Is it good English?

    Is it good English? Any mistakes, teachers?

    1) Dear Arts Center Manager,
    I would like to thank you so much for the invitation to the opening of the Arts Center you are the head of. It has been very enjoyable and interesting taking part in the opening. I liked it very much, but I was disappointed by a few things that I know you had promised to my college principal and that you did not keep actually. I am happy to know there is a Cafe where every student can go to to buy something to eat. I have already been there and I can say the atmophere is really nice! I have also seen the Art Gallery and it is very spacious. We are going to have great exhibitions on there! The Art Library is brilliant! I have dropped in on the Music and the rehearsal rooms and I think they are very useful for our college students, but I did not understand whether these rooms are for hire or not. Do we have to pay to get in? And why are not there any recording studios differently from what you had promised before? I want to let you know that 60% of students do want one and they would be rather disappointed if they did not find one at least!
    On the handoutof your center I have also read that there is just 15% student discount on all tickets, whereas my principal told me you had arranged a 10% student discount. Can't we do any better to let the students enjoy a major discount just as you had promised before?
    I would be very thanksful if we could meet one more time to discuss all the points I have explained in this letter because all the students would appreciate it very much.
    Best regards


    2) Technology is having a huge impact on modern society today. Technology and the increasing development of the technological sector are contributing to modify and to change our style of life. Tools (OR GOODS??), as television, the cameras, the Internet, the computers and the lap tops, and of course also the mobile phones are a very important part of everybody's daily life. We could scarcely do without them because we are used to using them for our purposes and it would be really hard for us to ignore their existence. One of the most fundamental thing we use many times a day is, without doubt, mobile phones. Everyone of us has got one; some of us also have more than just one! Some people use the cell phone to work, others use it even for their personal life. We can say that in the latest ten years mobile phones have surely turned upside down the relationships among people of the entire world. They have shorted distances so that a person who is in Europe, for istance, can reach another person living in America in a flash! The only thing two people need to do in order to communicate is just to know their phone numbers and, after dialing the number, they can speak to one another as if they were in the self-same city.
    But if on one side the invention of cell phones has brought about an improvement of the human relationships, on the other it has also had - and it is still having - some disavantages. For example, many people, above all among the young people, usually spend too much time stuck to their phones. This happens because the most modern and techonologically developed cell phones are equipped with games of any sort, they have any types of application where everyone can spend - I'd say waste instead of spend - his/her time with, andwhat is more, they also have the possibility to surf the net. All this is being causing a kind of addiction to our own phones, through which we can send emails, type messages and text everybody.

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Is it good English?

    These look suspiciously like homework assignments.

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    #3

    Re: Is it good English?

    This is not an homework. Since I have to improve my English for a Cambridge exam, I have written two essays, on the basis of the instructions they had given to me. For this reason, I really hope someone native or an English teacher could tell me whether he likes what I've written or not. That's it.

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    #4

    Re: Is it good English?

    Can anyone help me with these texts I've written?

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    #5

    Re: Is it good English?

    (Do not use "everybody" unless you can prove it. Use "most" or "the majority".)
    Do not use "most" or "the majority" unless you can prove it, either. (Or use and be aware that someone may not believe you.) The importance of the mobile phone in anybody's life may well be questioned. Using "most" instead of "everybody" does make the statement much easier to accept, but it's still a statement of fact, not necessarily obvious.

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    #6

    Re: Is it good English?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gillnetter View Post
    What percentage of people do you believe constitutes the majority?
    >50% in this context.

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    #7

    Re: Is it good English?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gillnetter View Post
    That's probably true in some cases. Depending on the group it may be 2/3 or more. So...how would you "water" this down - some, a few? What the writer is trying to show is that these devices are popular and are used by many people - a few "weasel" words are acceptable to build his case.
    Using the word "popular" instead of "important" might do. I think it's unquestionable that mobile phones are popular. Of course, the writer doesn't necessarily have exact figures at hand, but it seems to be common knowledge that almost everybody uses a mobile phone (in the richer parts of the world) and it is known that it has been measured. Importance is difficult to measure, so it's difficult to prove any statement concerning it. However, I would easily accept the sentence with "important" and with "most". I agree with it personally and I believe most people do. It's just that it might be difficult to convince anybody who would think otherwise (perhaps not so many people). If the writer wanted to stick to "important", using a phrase like "in my opinion" or "I think" would make it fair enough -- in my opinion.

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    #8

    Re: Is it good English?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gillnetter View Post
    I caution my students to not use "I think" because - Of course you think that, you just said it. The same holds true for "in my opinion" - who else would have this opinion. [...]
    I, on the other hand, tend to reject sentences which say that, for example, something is important, without a clear message that it's just the writer's opinion. There is a difference between presenting a fact and presenting an opinion and a writer needs means to express the difference. A sentence stating that something is imporant is modal -- it expresses the sender's view of the world. It may perhaps be argued that, therefore, any further indication of modality is redundant (since "important" already bears it), but I believe the indication is often needed. Statements of importance are often interpreted as facts and something like "in my opinion" may prevent it. Also, it may prevent anger in those receivers who don't agree -- a sentence with "in my opinion" often sounds less harsh, which may encourage discussion instead of fight. It makes the receiver certain that the sender is not convinced that his is a statement of fact.

    I agree that it's not a big deal at all in this case.

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