Awkward past tense construction

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Truthyness

Member
England, English
I was hoping for guidance as to why the verb tense used in the 2nd sentence below reads so clumsily? Understanding how to improve it without altering the meaning would also be welcome. Thanks.

The paragraph is part of a mission statement.
"The BAKER system aims to provide consumers, and especially those in charge of educating minors, with intelligible information on games from an independent source. As a result of having put trust in BAKER, these educators will be able to make informed decisions on buying games."

'As a result of having put' is clumsy but the company baulks at change! An explanation in hard grammatical terms might convince them. Can someone help?

Possible alternatives I came up with were:
"by choosing BAKER to guide them..."
"by relying on BAKER..."
"by opting for the BAKER reference system..."
"In choosing BAKER for a guide..."
 
  • papillon

    Senior Member
    Russian (Ukraine)
    Hi Thruthyness,
    I don't find that sentence all that clumsy. Of course, it doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, but pretty standard as far as beaurocratic language. I doubt there is anything in the grammar that precludes such construction. As for style, perhaps you can drop "as a result":
    Having put trust in XXX, these educators...
     

    sparklya

    Member
    England, English
    Hi,

    I agree with papillon that "as a result of" is superfluous. There is no grammatical reason not to use it, it just doesn't really add anything to the sentence. An even more simple version could be
    "Putting their trust in BAKER, these educators..."
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    It's a Mission Statement - AARrrrggghhhh!
    Hours - indeed days - of anguish to produce a few sentences that are meant to crystallise the essence of the enterprise. You end up with a few sentences that are as meaningful as chewed string.
    I suppose "Using BAKER, these educators ... " would be too simple.
     

    Truthyness

    Member
    England, English
    It's a Mission Statement - AARrrrggghhhh!
    Hours - indeed days - of anguish to produce a few sentences that are meant to crystallise the essence of the enterprise. You end up with a few sentences that are as meaningful as chewed string.
    Aaaaaaaarrrrgh! sums it up e-x-a-c-t-l-y Panjandrum. Hearing a fellow human echo understanding is very therapeutic!

    Still I was seeking to understand why, in grammatical terms, the construct looks/sounds so awful.
    Having avoided Latin like the plague in my school days, I have been paying for it ever since!:(
     

    Trinibeens

    Senior Member
    NYC
    U.S. English
    Aaaaaaaarrrrgh! sums it up e-x-a-c-t-l-y Panjandrum. Hearing a fellow human echo understanding is very therapeutic!

    Still I was seeking to understand why, in grammatical terms, the construct looks/sounds so awful.
    Having avoided Latin like the plague in my school days, I have been paying for it ever since!:(
    It sounds awkward to me because each of the phrases "As a result of" and "having put trust in" have the same number of syllables and their appearance side-by-side lends the construction a sing-song quality. It's also using quite a lot of words to say something simple.

    To change it while still using a variant of 'trust', I would suggest:

    "As a result of trusting in"

    However, I'm not comfortable with the word 'trust' in this context, and I therefore prefer your suggestion, "By relying on."
     

    Suehil

    Medemod
    British English
    Mission statements are a perfect example of something built by a committee. I would dare to bet that they spent days discussing the word 'trust' and will absolutely refuse to accept anything else.
    It's an admirable endeavour, Truthyness, but if you manage to make a mission statement sound like normal English you will go down in history.
     

    Vinlander

    Senior Member
    Canada, American English (mostly)
    The problem with "As a result of having put trust in BAKER, these educators will be able to make informed decisions on buying games." isn't grammar, it is logic. The educators will be able to make informed decisions because they use BAKER, not because they "trust" it. One can "trust" BAKER and not "use" it and, presumably, one not will be able to make (any better) informed decisions. One can not "trust" BAKER yet "use" it anyway and, presumably, one will be able to make informed decisions.

    It seems a question of logic (which is doubtless of no significance whatsoever in this situation).

    Vinlander
     

    Truthyness

    Member
    England, English
    It's an admirable endeavour, Truthyness, but if you manage to make a mission statement sound like normal English you will go down in history.
    Sadly I won't Sue as 'they' are adamant! This is Euro-drivel in its purest form. But looking at it on the plus side rubbish like this spawns employment for thousands, so why knock it!:eek: The real problem comes when you start talking and writing in the same style!
     

    Truthyness

    Member
    England, English
    drop "as a result":
    Having put trust in XXX, these educators...
    Hmm! good idea Papillion.

    And your tolerance commends you... but you didn't read the full 65 pages. By the time I had reached the end, expressing a single coherent phrase had become a challenge so befuddled was I.
     

    Truthyness

    Member
    England, English
    It's also using quite a lot of words to say something simple.

    To change it while still using a variant of 'trust', I would suggest:

    "As a result of trusting in"

    However, I'm not comfortable with the word 'trust'
    Trinibeens, thanks... the problem with trust: well spotted!
    And you don't know the half of it!!! I wonder if 'entrusting' could add anything? At this point I've lost the plot and not one single word in the paragraph seems to makes sense anymore!

    This °°° is °°° the nature of corporate-speak! The effect is akin to a film of something not quite pleasant coating the mouth after unpleasant junk food has been ingested.
     
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