Serve vs. service

jokaec

Senior Member
Chinese - Hong Kong
Which Internet provider "serves" or "services" this neighborhood is the best?

Are they both correct? If so, which is better in this situation? Thank you.
 
  • sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Thank you heypresto. Is "servicing" also correct? If so, which is better in this situation? Thank you
    Good question.:)

    The verb "Service" implies mechanical repair or maintenance

    So, if the physical internet in your neighborhood is accidentally ripped up, somebody will be sent out to repair it, i.e. service it.
    (We have our cars, appliances, etc. serviced.)
    .
    If you're talking about providing a service, such as the internet, then the provider is serving your neighborhood and hopefully providing good service.

    See post #2

    Side note #1 "Service" is also jargon in animal husbandry, particularly horses, where a stallion "services" a mare.

    Side note #2 Apologies to Heypresto for jumping in, but it's after 2200 hours in the U.K. :)
     

    jokaec

    Senior Member
    Chinese - Hong Kong
    Thank you sdgraham. I got "Service" implies mechanical repair or maintenance".
     

    Linkway

    Senior Member
    British English
    Also, housekeeping staff service hotel rooms, ie they clean, tidy up, replenish tissues and soaps, and change bed linen and towels, etc.
     

    jokaec

    Senior Member
    Chinese - Hong Kong
    Also, housekeeping staff service hotel rooms, ie they clean, tidy up, replenish tissues and soaps, and change bed linen and towels, etc.
    Thank you Linkway. I Now I got one more case to use "service".
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Sometimes you have to be careful. If someone serves you (for example, a female that works in a restaurant), that means she takes your order and brings you your food. If you say a woman services you, that's slang for providing sex. Don't mix up those two.

    Along the same lines, the hotel housekeeping staff is servicing your room, not you.
     

    jokaec

    Senior Member
    Chinese - Hong Kong
    Thank you Kentix. Now I remember “service something” and “serve somebody”.
     

    Barque

    Senior Member
    Tamil
    Are they both correct? If so, which is better in this situation? Thank you.
    Both "serves" and "services" are unsuitable for your OP sentence because of the way it's constructed, which is why Heypresto suggested "serving".

    Which Internet provider "serves" or "services" this neighborhood is the best?
    If you want to use "serves", you'll need to change the sentence a little.

    Which internet provider that serves this neighborhood is the best?
    It's now grammatical with the addition of "that" but sounds awkward.

    Which is the best internet provider among those that serve this neighborhood?

    This sounds better in my opinion.
     
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