Results 1 to 7 of 7
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • German
      • Home Country:
      • Germany
      • Current Location:
      • Germany

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 10
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    Question "The text informs about?"

    German students love to write "The text informs about ..." when summing up the contents of a newspaper article. Since "inform" is a transitive verb, I always mark this wrong. Some colleagues, however, seem to accept it. Am I too pedantic? Can you leave out who is informed?

  1. teechar's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Iraq
      • Current Location:
      • Iraq

    • Join Date: Feb 2015
    • Posts: 2,361
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: "The text informs about?"

    Quote Originally Posted by Hever View Post
    "The text informs about ..."
    Classic case of misusing a reporting verb!

    Quote Originally Posted by Hever View Post
    Am I too pedantic?
    Not at all; you're just being correct.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 34,331
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: "The text informs about?"

    Are your colleagues who accept it native English speakers?
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • German
      • Home Country:
      • Germany
      • Current Location:
      • Germany

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 10
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #4

    Re: "The text informs about?"

    Great. Thank you for your quick reply.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • German
      • Home Country:
      • Germany
      • Current Location:
      • Germany

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 10
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #5

    Re: "The text informs about?"

    Well, no. They are German English teachers. The point is that inform can be both transitive and intransitive in German, so it is rather tempting to forget the object now and again.
    Thank you for taking an interest.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Laos

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 52,411
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #6

    Re: "The text informs about?"

    If you hear an error often enough, it stops sounding wrong. I have been asked What means xxx? so often that it sounds normal to me and I have to remind myself that it's wrong. Maybe your colleagues have been overexposed to this form if students love it.

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 24,983
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #7

    Re: "The text informs about?"

    Actually, "inform" can be used intransitively in English. I would not have used the construction in the OP's post, but the intransitive use exists.

    See here: http://www.thefreedictionary.com/inform

Similar Threads

  1. ",...in spite of..." or "...despite of..." inside a text.
    By Jorma_1980 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 17-Aug-2014, 16:36
  2. [Essay] "The Fat Black Woman Goes Shopping" Text Transformation
    By princesszakiya in forum Editing & Writing Topics
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 29-Apr-2013, 10:51
  3. Replies: 3
    Last Post: 04-Sep-2010, 17:01
  4. Text analysis of "Dead Man's shoes" by David Evans
    By Mr.Jones in forum Literature
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 24-Mar-2008, 12:52
  5. "work"/"deal with" the text
    By Leo.Avilla in forum Text Analysis and Statistics
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 04-Feb-2006, 04:44

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •