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    #1

    "sign up" or "sign on"?

    Which phrase should I choose for each of the following two blanks? or both?



    1. Last year my wife and I decided to take the plunge, we signed up for residential solar power. After a lot of research weighing solar energy pros and cons, we decided to ____________ with Solar City.
    2. The county has ____________ four youngsters for next season, including two local 18-year-olds all-rounder John Hughes and batsman Russell Warren on summer contracts.


    Are these two phrases interchangeable in these two cases? Is there geographical preferences for either one, say in BrE and AmE?

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: "sign up" or "sign on"?

    Is this homework?

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    #3

    Re: "sign up" or "sign on"?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    Is this homework?
    No. I'm in disagreement with my colleagues over a test item. I believe either of the two phrases is acceptable in both sentences. But I can’t find direct evidence in the dictionaries I have. Although Google hits provide some helpful hints, I want an unequivocal answer from native speakers. However, if my claim is wrong, I’d also like to learn the difference between them. So could anyone help now? Thanks in advance.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: "sign up" or "sign on"?

    In my opinion, you can use both phrases in both blanks. However, "sign up" would be better for the first and "signed on" would be better for the second. This is from an AmE speaker. We will have to wait for BrE speakers.

  3. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: "sign up" or "sign on"?

    In BrE, I would use "sign up" with the first example about energy providers. Having said that, the use of "signed up" in the first half makes the use of "sign up" in the second half rather repetitive. In reality, I would probably say "... we decided to go with Solar Energy".


    In the second, certainly with soccer, we simply say "signed".

    Liverpool FC have signed two sixteen-year-olds.
    Brighton and Hove Albion have signed Kenny Dalglish.

    I'm not sure whether "signed" also works for cricket which appears to be the sport referred to in your second example.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #6

    Re: "sign up" or "sign on"?

    Yes, it does.

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    #7

    Re: "sign up" or "sign on"?

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    In BrE, I would use "sign up" with the first example about energy providers. Having said that, the use of "signed up" in the first half makes the use of "sign up" in the second half rather repetitive. In reality, I would probably say "... we decided to go with Solar Energy".


    In the second, certainly with soccer, we simply say "signed".

    Liverpool FC have signed two sixteen-year-olds.
    Brighton and Hove Albion have signed Kenny Dalglish.

    I'm not sure whether "signed" also works for cricket which appears to be the sport referred to in your second example.
    Interesting. What about other varieties of Englishes, say Canadians, or Australians, what are your preferences?

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