(He's/He's been) in charge of the company since 2001

AntiScam

Senior Member
Arabic
#1
Greetings,

I know that this sentence is perfect English.
He's been in charge of the company since 2001
However, I think this one too is correct:
He's in charge of the company since 2001
I guess it only works with verb to be not with action verbs. To "prove" my point I have collected some sentences from the Web, and here they are:

From an article by Elaine Kolodziej June 2, 2010)

Commercial on TV: "Duff Beer: the best American beer since 1905."
Dude says: "Did you see that comercial? They say Duff is the best American Beer since 1905. Whoa!"

Twenty soldiers were killed today in the worst attack since the beginning of the war...
Dude says: "Oh, really? Is this really the worst attack since the war started?"
From a post: Since + simple present?

So what do you think? Are there any restrictions or any notes you would like to point out?


P.S.
As a side:
There is a combination of senses possible : Before 2007 he taught every weekday at college; since 2007 he only teaches three days a week.
JulianStuart, Aug 6, 2009 A post: since + present simple - correct?
 
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  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    English-US
    #2
    Hello, Anti Scam.

    Although you've done a good job of presenting examples of the "since + simple present" construction, I really dislike it. To me, "Duff has been the best American beer since 1905" is far preferable to the version that uses the simple present. The present perfect does a wonderful job of telling us that something that began in the past still affects the present. I see no advantage in trying to replace it with the simple present.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    English, USA
    #3
    Well, regarding your first quote, if you read the article through to the end you'll see that the author used "has been":

    Strange how these details come out, but our president wants to assure us that he has taken FULL RESPONSIBILITY and has done so SINCE DAY ONE!
    I don't know why the simple present is used in the title. Space considerations?

    As for the beer, I'm not sure what "is the best beer since 1905" means. "This is the coldest winter since 1905" makes sense to me, but I don't see how I could apply that meaning to Duff. I suppose it could be the best new beer since 1905, but that's not what it says.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England
    #4
    "Since X" means "from X until now." <- all that is in the past. Use the present perfect or present perfect continuous. :thumbsup:

    The "He is in charge" example is wrong.
    The "beer" example is wrong.
    The "Obama" one is a headline - never learn grammar from headlines.
    The "beginning of the war" one is not attached to a verb
    I would have used the present perfect continuous in Julian's example.
     

    fiercediva

    Senior Member
    American English
    #5
    As regards the ""Duff Beer: the best American beer since 1905" example...

    Duff (wikipedia) is the fictional beer of The Simpsons, meant to be a parody of the Anheuser-Busch beer empire.

    Anheuser-Busch once ran an ad campaign "Budweiser (King of Beers) Since 1876", implying that Bud has been the best from the founding of the company to the present day.

    As an ad slogan, it should not be used as an example of how something should be said or written correctly in English.
     

    AntiScam

    Senior Member
    Arabic
    #6
    Thank you very much guys. Looks like my sentence cannot be used as it stands. However, since can be used in the present simple in some situations. This useful thread from usingenglish.com has some interesting quotes and explanation
    since + present simple

    Grammar books that I’ve checked don’t help much:
    Quirk et al*, in Section 14.26 “The perfective with temporal since-clauses”, gives a long discussion on when various tenses can be used in the main clause where there is a ‘since’ clause. Unfortunately, they does not explain why such tenses are used. The pages are purely descriptive. So, it doesn’t say much more than we could already tell you, ie. that sometimes the perfective form is necessary.

    Swan* addresses this in “Since:tenses”
    “In sentences refering to since (referring to time), we normally use the present perfect
    and past perfect tenses in the main clause.” (p.522). “However, present and past tenses are occasionally found, especially in sentences about changes.”:
    ‘Since last Saturday I can’t stop thinking about you.’
    ‘You’re looking much better since your operation’

    ‘It’s a long time since the last meeting’

    Quirk, et al. A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language, 1985. (p 1015+)
    Swan, Michael, Practical English Usage, 3rd Ed. 2005 (p.522)


    I've decided that "Since 2007" is unique in the examples you've given because it is purely temporal.
    In the two correct sentences I gave you:
    1. "Since I was robbed, I go to bed every night with a shotgun."
    2. "Since I developed cancer, I go on holidays whenever I can."
    the since clause can be be seen to also have an element of "since" as "because"
    1. "Because I was robbed, I go to bed every night with a shotgun."
    2. "Because I have developed cancer, I go on holidays whenever I can."

    And it is not coincidental that "since" acts as both a temporal marker and as a reason marker, because the reason occurred at the time given - in fact the reason is expressed as a temporal marker.

    A: "When did you start taking a shotgun to bed?"
    B: "When I was robbed". The answer is both temporal and causal.

    In sentence 3, "Since 2007 ..." has no causal component.
    Here's a similar phrase that does have a causal component, and can be (and has been) used with the simple present.
    "Since 9/11/2001, I am afraid of tall buildings." And the only difference between this and sentence 3, is that this has element of causation.
    And if you look at all your other examples, none of the "since" clauses has a purely temporal meaning. They all include a causative component.

    So, the provisional rule from this is that, if the "since" clause/phrase is purely temporal, you use the present perfect tense.
     

    Kirusha

    Senior Member
    Russian
    #7
    That has long puzzled me too, AntiScam. There are two points, however, to be distinguished with regard to the excerpt above. Swan draws that distinction but it got a little blurred.

    1) Swan says that in British English present simple is very common in such expressions as 'It's a long time since...' ('It's a long time since the last meeting'). If fact, Ruth Rendell's books abound in such examples, e.g.: 'Oh, it's such a long time since a man has rung me up and wanted to meet me'). A standard textbook recommendation would be: 'It's been such a long time since a man rang me up and wanted to meet me'.

    Question: I wonder whether British speakers here can relate to this usage pattern. How common is it from your point of view? What are its sociolinguistic underpinnings, if any?

    2) As far as 'sentences about changes' are concerned, Swan's comment is curious in so far as he says that 'present tenses... are occasionally found' without passing an evaluative judgement on their grammatical inappropriateness (which he doesn't hesitate to do elsewhere). The explanation offered by the author of the quoted post seems quite ingenious, but it would be interesting to give Swan's examples a trial run here.

    Question: which of the following pairs of sentences seems more natural to you?

    A1 You're looking much better since your operation.
    A2 You've been looking much better since your operation.

    B1 She doesn't come round to see us so much since her marriage.
    B2 She hasn't been round to see us so much since her marriage.

    C1 Since last Sunday I can't stop thinking about you.
    C2 Since last Sunday I've been unable to stop thinking about you.

    (I'm not even sure the three examples should be lumped together as different considerations may govern the choice of tenses in each case).

    Many thanks in advance to everyone who helps throw light on this intriguing matter.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England
    #8
    I don’t think you’re going to get any comment on the uncontroversial second examples.

    My first thoughts are that A1 and B1 can be reversed – a sign that they are OK.

    A1 since your operation, you're looking much better.
    B1 since her marriage, she doesn't come round to see us so much.

    A1 You're now looking much better since you had your operation. <- There is an implied “now” to justify the present tense and since is introducing a clause of reason.
    B1 She doesn't come round to see us so much since her marriage. <- this is habitual and the action (or lack of it) extends to the present.

    I don’t like C1:

    Since last Sunday I can't stop thinking about you.
    It cannot be reversed: "I can't stop thinking about you since last Sunday.":cross: <-The function of ‘since’ seems unclear.

    C1 could be saved by converting it to "Since you drowned those kittens last Sunday I can't stop thinking about you." and the "can't stop thinking about you" is justified as in A1.
     

    Kirusha

    Senior Member
    Russian
    #9
    Thank you, PaulQ. Yes, when you spell the C examples out like that, the causative explanation seems to be working fine (and that's a really curious point, most conspicuously absent from textbooks). A hunch of mine didn't come off though: I thought A1 and C1 might actually be judged as even more probable than the second examples. But how would you answer the other question? Which do you personally say:

    1) It's been a long time since I did X.
    2) It's a long time since I've done X.
    3) It's a long time since I did X?

    I would also like to ask speakers of American English whether they would judge A1-C1 and 1)-3) to be grammatically acceptable.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England
    #10
    1) It's been a long time since I did X. -> I would say this if the event were in the future. "Horse riding next Tuesday? It's been a long time since I rode a horse."
    2) It's a long time since I've done X. -> I would say this if I were recalling the event. "It's a long time since I've built a wall, but, If I remember, it is essential to use the right bricks.".
    3) It's a long time since I did X? -> as 2.
     
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