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    #1

    Nil return

    Dear teachers, is there any plain phrases that can substitute the following jargon:

    "Nil reply is required."

    Thanks a lot.

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Nil return

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepurple View Post
    Dear teachers, is there any plain phrases that can substitute the following jargon:

    "Nil reply is required."

    Thanks a lot.
    The "nil" is unnecessarily pompous. "No reply/response [is] needed" or "This letter/<whatever> needs no reply/response" would do the job, or if you were on friendly terms with the recipient you could say something informal like 'Don't bother replying'.

    b

  2. buggles's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Nil return

    Sometimes this phrase is used when a reply must be sent even if the response is nil. It depends a lot on the context.

    If you see the phrase on a form containing many questions, it would be expected that you enter 0 in the box rather than leave it blank.

    e.g.

    Q1 How many passengers?

    Q2 How many are children? (nil reply is required)

    This is so they know you've read the question and not just missed it by accident.

    buggles (not a teacher)
    Last edited by buggles; 22-Dec-2008 at 17:13. Reason: spelling mistake

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Nil return

    Aha; why didn't they say they were using code?

    b

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    #5

    Re: Nil return

    Quote Originally Posted by buggles View Post
    Sometimes this phrase is used when a reply must be sent even if the response is nil. It depends a lot on the context.

    If you see the phrase on a form containing many questions, it would be expected that you enter 0 in the box rather than leave it blank.

    e.g.

    Q1 How many passengers?

    Q2 How many are children? (nil reply is required)

    This is so they know you've read the question and not just missed it by accident.

    buggles (not a teacher)
    Yes, that's it, buggles, and thanks to BobK too.
    I have written a party invitation letter to my friends, and wish that they could give me a reply by ticking the appropriate box in the reply slip: "I would not attend the party" even though they would not come.
    In that case, is there any simpler English to replace this "Nil reply is required". Thanks.

  4. BobK's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Nil return

    Quote Originally Posted by Deepurple View Post
    Yes, that's it, buggles, and thanks to BobK too.
    I have written a party invitation letter to my friends, and wish that they could give me a reply by ticking the appropriate box in the reply slip: "I would not attend the party" even though they would not come.
    In that case, is there any simpler English to replace this "Nil reply is required". Thanks.
    In this case (a party invitation) there is a ready-made abbreviation that used to mean 'Please answer, yes or no': "RSVP" (which, like much formal language, is derived from French - Répondez s'il vous plaît). The words themselves don't mean 'Let me know even if the answer's no', but an invitation with "RSVP" on it was expected to be responded to formally. (These four letters are still often printed on the bottom right-hand corner of a written invitation.) Today, some people tautologically say 'Please RSVP', or even 'I think I should ask people to RSVP'.

    b

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