[General] "All other things being equal....."

Status
Not open for further replies.

infiniteone

Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2009
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Korean
Home Country
South Korea
Current Location
South Korea
There are two examples below.

A: The phone's camera is very important to you.All other things being equal, you'll buy the phone with the best camera.

B :The phone's camera is very important to you. All the other things being equal, you'll buy the phone with the best camera.

I think B is proper. With the phone removed from consideration, things to consider is "the rest" except the phone. But, It seems that native speakers use both and the "A"-type expression seems to used more often.
As a non-native speaker, I am so confused which to use.
I need help.
 
Last edited:

Raymott

VIP Member
Joined
Jun 29, 2008
Member Type
Academic
Native Language
English
Home Country
Australia
Current Location
Australia
There are two examples below.

A: The phone's camera is very important to you.All other things being equal, you'll buy the phone with the best camera.

B :The phone's camera is very important to you. All the other things being equal, you'll buy the phone with the best camera.

I think B is proper. With the phone removed from consideration, things to consider is "the rest" except the phone. But, It seems that native speakers use both and the "A"-type expression seems to used more often.
As a non-native speaker, I am so confused which to use.
I need help.
A. is idiomatic. You don't say "the".
You could use "the" if you have a list of specific other things in mind (such as the functions of a phone), but generally when you use this expression, you don't. I can't recall a native using "the".
E.g: "University A has a better teaching staff than University B. All other things being equal, I'd go to University A."
The point is, you don't have a list of "all the other things" because, by definition, everything but the teaching staff is included.
 

yuriya

Member
Joined
Apr 23, 2010
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Korean
Home Country
South Korea
Current Location
South Korea
There are two examples below.

A: The phone's camera is very important to you.All other things being equal, you'll buy the phone with the best camera.

B :The phone's camera is very important to you. All the other things being equal, you'll buy the phone with the best camera.

I think B is proper. With the phone removed from consideration, things to consider is "the rest" except the phone. But, It seems that native speakers use both and the "A"-type expression seems to used more often.
As a non-native speaker, I am so confused which to use.
I need help.

It's a little confusing but I see what you mean. But then, English itself is not that logical as the logic would dictate. All you have to do is loosen up a little. Personally, other things being equal is the most familiar expression.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top