Please READ this before you post: English Only Guidelines — forum rules.

Discussion in 'English Only' started by cuchuflete, Apr 9, 2005.

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  1. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    EEUU-inglés
    The Quick Guide to English Only


    We answer specific questions about words or phrases in a complete sentence with context and background in a respectful, helpful and cordial manner.

    -----------*----------

    The Shorter Guide to English Only

    Starting a thread
    • Search the forum for an answer or an existing thread before starting a new thread. (Forum Rule 1)
    • The title should contain the specific words or phrase you are asking about. (Forum Rule 3)
    • State your question clearly in the post itself. DO NOT rely on the thread title or on links in your post.
    • Provide both context and a full sample sentence for every new thread.
    • One topic per thread. If you have a second question, start a new thread.
    • Name the source of any quoted material from websites or print sources (Forum Rule 4)
    • DO NOT request a list. For lists of synonyms or equivalents consult the WR Thesaurus. DO NOT ask a research question.
    • DO NOT ask for proofreading. If you have a text for correction, ask a specific question and give your own ideas.
    • Do not bump your threads or flood the forum. Read Forum Rule 8 for a fuller explanation.
    • See also:
    NOTE: If you have fewer than 100 posts, a check list appears above the box in which you post a new thread. Read it before you submit your question.

    Responding to a post
    • DO NOT reply to any thread or post that has a problem such as: lack of context, multiple topics, non-English text, SPAM, etc. Use the dark red triangle in the lower left corner of the post to report it.
    • DO NOT make wild guesses if the question is unclear. Ask for clarification. If there is no context, report the thread.
    • Focus on the question being asked.
    • DO NOT proofread and DO NOT rewrite someone’s work.
    • Verify your answer before posting.
    General guidance


    Index to the English Only Guidelines :arrow: HERE.
    (Click blue underlined links for more information.)
    Link to Forum Rules here.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2015
  2. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    EEUU-inglés
    The Longer Guide to English Only
    (Click blue underlined links for more information.)

    What we do in the English Only forum

    We answer specific questions about words or phrases in a complete sentence with context and background in a respectful, helpful and cordial manner.

    This forum is for English Only – no other language.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Before you ask, SEARCH for the answer
    Look for the answer in the Search box at the top of the page. It will give you:


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    ASKING A QUESTION

    Subject Box

    • Specific word or phrase you would like to discuss.
    • Do not use Help me! or Grammar or Question.
    • The first character should NOT be punctuation, e.g. "cordial" – it creates problems for searching.
    Message Box

    Fine-Tuning


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    ANSWERING A QUESTION

    • Answer the question that is being asked.
    • Don’t guess if you don’t know.
    • If you need context, clarification or a sentence, ask nicely.
    • Verify your answer before posting.
    • If you quote a source or a related thread, review it to make sure it’s relevant.
    • Stay on topic and avoid chatting.
    • If you post a link, say what is on it – don't post a bare link.
    • Do not respond to proofreading requests, e.g. Does this sound all right?
    • Do not rewrite sentences.
    • Do not reply to posts that have the problems below … Report them!
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Report these posts by using the 'Report' link.

    • No context.
    • Request for proofreading, a list or research.
    • Abusive language or flaming.
    • Off-topic.
    • Audio and video links that do not contain the name of a moderator who approved them.
    • Spam.
    • Foreign language post in English Only.
    • You may report your own post to ask for a moderator's assistance if your question has not been answered and the thread has gone off the first page of the forum.
    Help/Permission/Moderators: Please send questions about the forum, moderation or rules to one of the moderators listed at the bottom of the forum page. These questions are off-topic in the forum and will be deleted.

    Moderators: The moderators' linked names are listed at the top of the English Only forum page. Clicking on an individual name will lead to the profile page.

    Complete Forum Rules
    are available in Rules in the blue bar at the top of this page.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Resource thread
    .
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2015
  3. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    EEUU-inglés
    Index to the English Only Guidelines

    How the rules work in the English Only forum
    Help with searching
    :arrow: English Only resource thread

    Contacting a moderator
    If you have questions that are not answered by this information, please send a private message to an English Only moderator. You will see us listed at the top of this page

    If you see a problematic post (no context, not English, advertising, offensive) that you feel should be brought to the moderators' attention, the easiest way to do this is to use the red 'report a post' triangle in the lower left corner of the post.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2015
  4. Kelly B

    Kelly B Senior Member

    USA English
    Context and Background

    All threads need context and background.
    English words and phrases can have many different meanings. Understanding them depends on where, when and how they are used. When you post a question, please include as much background information and context as you can.
    A question with no context may get an answer. If the question is straightforward, it may not be a wrong answer.
    But the more context you provide, the better the answers will be :)

    Background
    Where did you see or hear the word or phrase? In a book? … a newspaper? … a broadcast? … a conversation?
    What was the subject?
    When was it written? Recently? A long time ago?
    If you are quoting text, remember WordReference Rule #4 and make sure you acknowledge the source.

    Please also tell us if you are asking about something you wrote yourself. It prevents confusion.

    Context
    Some context is essential.
    It is difficult to say how much context is required because it depends on the question. But no one has ever posted a question with too much
    The text coming immediately before and immediately after the word or phrase under discussion - the sentence containing the word or phrase - may be enough.
    Ideally, please quote two sentences before, and one sentence after (the maximum quoted text allowed by Rule #4).

    Here are two contrasting examples:

    No background, no context
    “…because the reader would miss the chickens.”
    What does ‘miss the chickens’ mean? Is it about melancholy at their absence?

    Good background and context
    “…because the reader would miss the chickens.”
    What does ‘miss the chickens’ mean? I read this in a book review of "Two Caravans", a novel by Marina Lewycka about “…the innocence and oddities of immigrants and immigrant life in Britain,” published in The Economist on 19 April 2007. (That’s background)
    FULL QUOTE: "But to abandon Two Caravans for being too full of second-novel flaws would be a mistake. Not least because the reader would miss the chickens. About halfway through the book the hapless caravanistas are enticed into working in a factory chicken farm where the span of life, from “hatchin' to catchin'”, lasts just five weeks. And what horrible weeks they are—and not just for the chickens." (That’s context).

    Threads without context may be summarily closed.
    Please help promote useful questions and answers by reporting such threads (use the dark red triangle
    in the lower left corner of the post) instead of wasting time begging and pleading for background and context.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
  5. GenJen54

    GenJen54 Senior Member

    Downright Pleasant, USA
    USA - English
    Schoolwork / Coursework

    Principles
    WordReference forums wish to help members to learn, but are adamantly opposed to doing people's work for them or assisting them in any way to misrepresent their competence.

    These forums do not provide free schoolwork. If you want help with a school assignment or coursework, we expect you to do your own work first. Then, and only then, you may post it with a request for help with specific doubts. This forum does not 'polish' homework for you.


    See also:
    Proofreading/Text for Correction
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2015
  6. GenJen54

    GenJen54 Senior Member

    Downright Pleasant, USA
    USA - English
    Multiple-choice Questions
    - and questions involving choices between two or more sentences:

    1. If your question is based on a multiple-choice question (for example, from a test) you should provide the "correct" answer (if known), your preferred answer, and your reasons for preferring that answer.

    2. If you are asking about differences between sentences and your question is of this type:
    "which is best?"
    "which is preferred"
    "which is more natural?" ​
    you should explain what is your uncertainty or difficulty with your example sentences.

    Unless you tell us what you think, and why, we cannot offer comments.

    See also:
    Proofreading/Text for Correction
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2013
  7. timpeac

    timpeac Senior Member

    England
    English (England)
    Proofreading / Text for Correction

    You may ask a specific question about a word, phrase or grammar issue contained in a sentence you have written and provide up to three additional sentences of your own text (essay, paragraph, cover letter, CV, resumé, etc) as context. You should not ask members to examine and correct the entire text.

    Those who respond are encouraged to make comments about grammar, syntax, style, punctuation, and other areas that need attention in the sentence in question. These should be side comments in posts that focus on the main question. Those who respond should not correct or re-write the entire text.

    Please do not help a student or employment applicant misrepresent their level of competence in English.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2015
  8. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Chatspeak, SMS abbreviations and capital letters

    Chatspeak and SMS abbreviations are forbidden in the English Only forum, other than as topics of discussion.

    Do not write "u" for "you", "thx" for "thank you", "btw" for "by the way", "gonna" for "going to", etc.

    Members are required to make their best attempt to write in standard English in this forum. That includes using capital letters and punctuation.
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2015
  9. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    EEUU-inglés
    Quoting text from other sources

    The WordReference rules on quoting text are summarized here for your convenience:

    No web pages or copyrighted content may be inserted into WordReference posts except as indicated below. Minor fair use excerpts from dictionaries such as a definition/translation or two are permitted. Plagiarized content is forbidden.

    Quotes and translations of texts up to 4 sentences are permitted. Always acknowledge the source.
    Song lyrics and poetry/verse may be quoted and translated up to a maximum of 4 lines.
    Always acknowledge the source.

    All forms of inserted content that do not meet these conditions will be removed without exception.

    Links to content elsewhere are acceptable and appropriate, provided such links meet the requirements stated elsewhere in these rules. Links to sites that require a subscription or membership are not permitted.

    Additional information, including examples of source

    Note to Posters: A link to an online source is not enough – you must write out your source (see examples below).

    Note to Others: If the source is not named - report it using the triangle in the lower-left corner of each post.

    Source is required for three reasons:
    • Copyright Issues – Identifying the source helps prevent copyright problems for WordReference.
    • Better Answers – Knowing the source helps members give more focused answers.
    • Forum RuleRule 4.
    Note that threads without a source may be deleted at any time.
    Having to ask for a source adds unnecessary posts and wastes everyone’s time.

    Thank you ...
    Source: The English Only moderation team ;)

    Examples of Source -- Links are optional, but appreciated


    Self-made sentence
    If you have written the sentence yourself, please tell us.

    Book
    A Short History of Nearly Everything, Bill Bryson.

    Film
    Five Easy Pieces – United States, 1970.

    TV Show
    The Wire – United States, crime drama.

    Song
    Singing in the Rain, Frank Sinatra (complete lyrics at lyrics007.com)

    Article
    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy: Plato, published March 2004 and revised August 2011. .

    Webpage
    FreeDictionary.com: wangle something from someone.
    or
    FreeDictionary.com: "wangle something from someone."
    http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/wangle

    .
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2015
  10. Kelly B

    Kelly B Senior Member

    USA English
    Using languages other than English

    All posts in this monolingual forum should be fully comprehensible not only to native speakers, but to learners as well.

    Occasionally, an English translation or paraphrase or brief explanation of a non-English word or short phrase may be useful.
    Any foreign word must be incidental, not essential, to understanding the post. The restriction is interpreted very narrowly; in most cases posts containing languages other than English will be deleted.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2009
  11. GenJen54

    GenJen54 Senior Member

    Downright Pleasant, USA
    USA - English
    Lists and Research topics

    Lists: Do not request a list.
    For lists of synonyms or equivalents consult the WR Thesaurus. The use of individual terms in a specific context may be discussed in this forum.

    Research: Do not ask questions such as:

    • A question that is a survey of member opinions rather than a discussion of a specific linguistic issue.
    • A question about creating a product or business name, or about a potential advertising slogan.
    • A question about hypothetical words or constructions rather than actual English usage.
    Research questions will be deleted. If you have a question that may be a research question, check with a moderator before you post it. We may be able to help structure the question so that it is acceptable, or suggest other ways in which the forum could be useful for what you have in mind.

    Remember that there are many other resources on the Internet that can help you with lists and research.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2013
  12. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Acceptable abbreviations

    There are a small number of terms that are used so often in the English Only forum that their abbreviated forms are accepted.

    Forum-related
    WR - WordReference
    WRF - WordReference Forum
    EO - English Only forum.
    OP - Original Poster (the person who started the thread) or Original Post (the first post in the thread).
    Forms of English
    AE - American English,
    BE - British English.
    Occasionally AmE, AmEn, BrE, BrEn have been used.

    You may also come across other members of the xE family. These are usually obvious from the context or by looking at the location of the author. Examples that come to mind are:
    AuE - Australian English
    CaE - Canadian English
    IE - Irish English
    NAmE - North American English (used by the OUP - Oxford University Press)
    NZE - New Zealand English

    Others (a very, very select list)
    AHD - American Heritage Dictionary
    CALD - Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary
    RHU - Random House Unabridged Dictionary
    M-W - Merriam-Webster
    OALD - Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary
    OED - Oxford English Dictionary
    OUP - Oxford University Press

    If you use other abbreviations, you must define them with the first use.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2015
  13. Kelly B

    Kelly B Senior Member

    USA English
    Audio / video files

    Please note the recent addition to forum rules by the Administrator:

    For audio and video:
    These files are too difficult for the moderators to police, so:
    - No audio or video files
    or links to themunless you get moderator approval ahead of time.
    - All these threads need to say which moderator approved them.*

    So, let's try this, and hopefully it will not be too much of a burden on the moderators. Please only request approval of audio/video content that definitely has value for language learners here at the site. Also, please understand that some moderators are unable to visit many of the video sites because they connect from work and their employers forbid them from visiting such sites.

    All audio and video files and links that do not have prior approval will be deleted.
    Permission will not be granted after the fact for deleted files or links. Please ask first.


    * Note: The websites listed in the Pronunciation links section of the International Phonetic Alphabet links post in our Resources thread are considered 'pre-approved'.
    You won't need specific moderator's approval to post a link to one of those, but be sure to explain that the website is listed in our Resources thread.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2015
  14. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    EEUU-inglés
    Posting links to ask or answer a thread question


    Please do not simply populate posts with Google, Wikipedia or other links and few or no words of your own. It leaves the questioner no better off.

    If you have found something that you believe is helpful to the discussion, explain or paraphrase it in your reply and by all means also offer a link to a specific location.

    In so far as possible, posts should be understandable from what appears in the post itself. The use of links should be to add further value, explanation or reference.

    Note: Links to web sites that require a subscription or membership, such as Facebook and other social networking sites, are not permitted. Such links are not accessible to all forum users, and are apt to have content that changes or is removed in a short time. You are welcome to quote useful excerpts from such sites (up to normal forum limits of 4 lines for poetry/verse/lyrics and 4 sentences for other text). Always give attribution to your source.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  15. cuchuflete

    cuchuflete Senior Member

    Maine, EEUU
    EEUU-inglés
    Index to the English Only Guidelines :arrow: HERE.

    The Quick Guide to English Only
    (Moderators see note at end.)*
    Responding to a post
    • DO NOT reply to any thread or post that has a problem such as: lack of context, multiple topics, non-English text, SPAM, etc. Use the dark red triangle in the lower left corner of the post to report it.
    • DO NOT make wild guesses if the question is unclear. Ask for clarification. If there is no context, report the thread.
    • Focus on the question being asked.
    • DO NOT proofread and DO NOT rewrite someone’s work.
    • Verify your answer before posting.
    Starting a thread
    NOTE: If you have fewer than 100 posts, a check list appears above the box in which you post a new thread. Read it before you submit your question.
    *Moderator Note: The Quick Guide from post #1 is duplicated here because there are posts in the forum with links to this post, #15 – the original home of the Quick Guide. Please do not remove this post.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2015
  16. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Jerusalem
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    There are two ways to search the forums, and both can give good results. They are:

    • The Dictionary and thread title search box at the top of each page
    • The Search Function available through the search box in the right side of the light blue bar at the top of the page. The link marked More... at the bottom of the drop-down menu leads to the advanced search funtion.
    Dictionary and thread title search
    This is probably the easiest and most convenient way to search for a word, a pair of words, or a phrase.

    If you enter a single word, it will first find that word in the WordReference Dictionary, which may give links to off-site dictionaries, as well as definitions and sample sentences. The list of definitions is followed by a list of links to forum threads that have this word in the thread title. (This is why we are so concerned that the thread titles be meaningful.)
    Example: dinner
    Perhaps you want to compare the usage of two or more words.
    Example: dinner supper

    Please notice that there are no quotation marks in the search field. The search will return only threads with both words somewhere in the title, in any order.
    Another possibility is to look for threads with a particular phrase in the title. In this case, you do use quotation marks.
    Example: "your dinner"

    The search will return threads whose titles include these words in this order.
    Experiment by trying different word combinations. It can take a little while to get a feel for the kinds of search terms that work, but once you do you will find this is an excellent tool.

    Search function
    The WordReference Advanced Search page is more flexible than the Dictionary and thread title search box, but the principles are the same.

    Note: These instructions are being revised to correspond to the new system.
    Thank you for your patience.



    [ Some of its special features:

    Search entire posts - Just below the Keyword box, you can choose to search thread titles only or entire posts. Searching entire posts is useful when you don't know the thread title, but you recall a phrase or words that were used in the thread itself.

    Search by user name - This function allows you to find all posts by a particular user, or all the threads that a user started. If you are not sure exactly how the member spells his or name, uncheck the Exact Name box.
    After you define the search, you may choose additional Search Options.
    Find posts from will limit your search to a particular time period.

    Sort results by will display the results either by date or by relevance.

    Search by tag (can be used by all members, even those who are not members of the taggers group). You may choose a tag from the drop-down menu or write a tag name into the white box below the drop-down menu. (See the Tag Usage Guide for an explanation of tags.)

    Search in forums will let you specify the forums to be searched, with or without any associated sub-forums.
    Finally, you have the option of choosing to Save Search Preferences. This is useful for searches you may prefer to do regularly, e.g. for particular tags. ]
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2015
  17. Nunty

    Nunty Modified

    Jerusalem
    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    How to find examples of sentences using a word or a phrase:

    Enter the word or phrase in the Dictionary and thread title search box at the top of the page, set to English definition.

    Do the search. This will take you to a dictionary page. Below the search on this page is a context link. Click on the link even if the box is empty. It will find sentences in newspaper articles that use the word that you can look over. If you have questions about any of these sentences, you may start a thread on that sentence. (See: Quoting text from other sources )

    Example:
    If you search for the phrase "your dinner", you will see this:
    "your dinner": in Spanish | in French | in Italian
    .......................in context | images
    If you are searching for a phrase, add quotation marks to the Google search that "in context" links to and click search again. Otherwise, it searches for the words individually as well as in the phrase.​
     
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2009
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