comma or semicolon before 'i.e.' [abbreviation]: two elements; i.e.

Discussion in 'English Only' started by as_99, Jun 28, 2010.

  1. as_99 Senior Member

    Arabic
    For this sentence after word "elements", should I use semicolon ";" or comma with "i.e."

    Example:

    The profitability is directly influenced by two elements, i.e. (or ;) the developing cost and efficiency of the entire plan to meet the segments’ needs.

    Segment means a part of the market of market share

    Please advise
     
  2. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    A comma is typically used after i.e. I've never seen a semicolon.
    Just to clarify, there would be a comma both before and after the i.e.
    ... two elements, i.e., the developing cost and efficiency


    In this situation, however, I would prefer the word "namely", or even the more archaic "viz."
     
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2010
  3. e2efour Senior Member

    England (aged 73)
    UK English
    AE uses i.e., or i.e., Also e.g.,
    BE uses i.e. and e.g.

    Following Occam's law (if it applies to language, that is), no comma should be written.
     
  4. Kumpel Senior Member

    London, England
    British English
    I, personally, would use a comma, and only before the i.e.; I do agree, however, namely feels more appropriate.

    Lloyd
     
  5. e2efour Senior Member

    England (aged 73)
    UK English
    Indeed, a comma is written before i.e.
     
  6. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    Thanks - I wasn't aware of the AE/BE split here.
    I have seen Occam's razor (as in KISS, although technically it applies to theories or explanations, I think) used to justify the use of ie and eg in some style sheets that eschew full stops. :eek: I don't recall their stances on commas around ie and eg, though.
     
  7. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Don't use "i.e." in this context.
     
  8. e2efour Senior Member

    England (aged 73)
    UK English
    Whyever not?
     
  9. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Many/some style guides advise against ie or eg in formal reports.
    This reads like a formal report.

    If you decide to use them, consider what punctuation you would use with the full version, and use the same with the abbreviation.
     
  10. e2efour Senior Member

    England (aged 73)
    UK English
    On what possible grounds?
     
  11. mplsray Senior Member

    Two American style manuals which require a comma after i.e. are the U.S. Government Printing Office Style Manual, Section 8.147 (text, PDF) and the University of Minnesota Style Manual. The U of M's manual calls for it explicitly, while the USGPO manual states the following:

    I take it that e.g. would count as an explanatory abbreviation explaining preceding matter.
     

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