Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last
Results 1 to 10 of 20

Thread: Gray area

Hybrid View

Previous Post Previous Post   Next Post Next Post
  1. #1
    Rachel Adams is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Georgia
      • Current Location:
      • Georgia
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    3,120

    Gray area

    Can I use "gray area" in the sentence below?

    "She is terrible at computers. It's gray area for her."

  2. #2
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    59,913

    Re: Gray area

    Quote Originally Posted by Rachel Adams View Post
    Can I use "gray area" in the sentence below?

    "She is terrible at computers. It's gray area for her."
    1. We don't say someone is terrible "at computers". You can be terrible with computers, at computing, at using computers etc, but not "at computers".
    2. Even if "grey area" (BrE spelling) were correct, you've omitted the relevant article.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. #3
    Rachel Adams is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Georgia
      • Current Location:
      • Georgia
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    3,120

    Re: Gray area

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    1. We don't say someone is terrible "at computers". You can be terrible with computers, at computing, at using computers etc, but not "at computers".
    2. Even if "grey area" (BrE spelling) were correct, you've omitted the relevant article.
    Is using "bad" and "good" also wrong? "She is bad/good at computers?"

  4. #4
    Rover_KE is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Retired English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    31,495

    Re: Gray area

    Yes. You have just replaced 'terrible' with different adjectives.

  5. #5
    Rachel Adams is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Georgia
      • Current Location:
      • Georgia
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    3,120

    Re: Gray area

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    Yes. You have just replaced 'terrible' with different adjectives.
    But isn't it correct with other words? For example, "She is good/bad at tennis"?

  6. #6
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    59,913

    Re: Gray area

    Yes, but "computers" isn't an activity/sport. It's simply a plural noun. We don't "do/play computers".
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  7. #7
    Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
    Charlie Bernstein is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    8,870

    Re: Gray area

    Quote Originally Posted by Rachel Adams View Post
    Can I use "gray area" in the sentence below?

    "She is terrible at computers. It's gray area for her."
    That's not how we use GRAY AREA.

    Have you looked it up yet?
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  8. #8
    Skrej's Avatar
    Skrej is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Posts
    3,602

    Re: Gray area

    Personally, I don't have a problem with 'good/bad at computers'. It's not unheard of in my area.
    Wear short sleeves! Support your right to bare arms!

  9. #9
    Rachel Adams is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Georgia
      • Current Location:
      • Georgia
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Posts
    3,120

    Re: Gray area

    Quote Originally Posted by Skrej View Post
    Personally, I don't have a problem with 'good/bad at computers'. It's not unheard of in my area.
    That's interesting. Thanks for letting me know.

  10. #10
    Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
    Charlie Bernstein is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    8,870

    Re: Gray area

    Quote Originally Posted by Skrej View Post
    Personally, I don't have a problem with 'good/bad at computers'. It's not unheard of in my area.
    It's fine with me, too.

    It's gray area that I'd change.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last

Posting Permissions

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