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  1. denismurs's Avatar
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    #1

    go off

    Hi everyone,

    May I use the preposition "off" in the next sentence?

    "The computer network has gone off so I can't send any emails this afftenoon."

    Denis.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: go off

    Your sentence is OK. But "off" is not a preposition there. It is an adverb.

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    #3

    Re: go off

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    But "off" is not a preposition there. It is an adverb.
    Some traditional grammars label it 'adverb'; others label it 'particle. To the Huddleston and Pullum school it's a preposition. Learners have to live with the fact that there is no general agreement on the word class of these little words.
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    #4

    Re: go off

    Computers and networks usually go down, not off.

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    #5

    Re: go off

    That's true, Dave, but I believe the down is more metaphorical than off. Off comes from the traditional phrases switch off / switch on.


    I think to answer denismurs initial question, it's "yes".
    (If the network is down, then something has switched off, or been switched off, hasn't it?)

  6. denismurs's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: go off

    Ok. "Go down" is more colloquial.

    Yes, I've understood from the exercise that there had been a failure which led up to disconnection of the network.

  7. Skrej's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: go off

    Quote Originally Posted by SoothingDave View Post
    Computers and networks usually go down, not off.
    I concur - 'go off' seems unnatural, although I can figure out what is meant. We usually refer to computers either going down, as Dave mentioned, or perhaps 'go offline', but I don't think I've heard of them 'going off'.

    'Go off' sounds like either an explosion, or a timed countdown.
    Wear short sleeves! Support your right to bare arms!

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    #8

    Re: go off

    If it is a preposition, where is its object? The only thing I call a particle is the "to" in an infinitive. I am quite comfortable with "adverb" here.

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    #9

    Re: go off

    I'm one of those people who refer to a long list of words generally as prepositions (on, off, under, above, in etc). For me, "to go off" is a phrasal verb and, again for me, that is something which consists of a verb plus a preposition. Verb = to go; preposition = off.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  10. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: go off

    Phrasal verbs can also be verb plus adverb.

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