Modifying Class Object

Steve Howell showell30 at
Sun Feb 14 09:15:02 CET 2010

On Feb 10, 6:16 am, Steven D'Aprano <st... at REMOVE-THIS-> wrote:
> Alf, although your English in this forum has been excellent so far, I
> understand you are Norwegian, so it is possible that you aren't a native
> English speaker and possibly unaware that quotation marks are sometimes
> ambiguous in English.
> While it is true that quoted text is officially meant to indicate a
> direct quote, it is also commonly used in informal text to indicate a
> paraphrase. (There are other uses as well, but they don't concern us now.)
> Unfortunately, this means that in informal discussions like this it is
> sometimes difficult to distinguish a direct quote from a paraphrase,
> except by context. In context, as a native speaker, I can assure you that
> Stephen Hansen's use of quotation marks is a paraphrase and not meant to
> be read as a direct quote.

As another native speaker of English, I can assure Alf that using
quotation marks in a paraphrase in written English is actually
strictly admonished against in some English speaking countries.  At
least according to my English teachers.  To the extent that many
people on the Internet don't speak English natively, I think the most
conservative and reasonable convention applies--use quotes to quote
directly; if you're not quoting directly, omit quotes and make clear
the fact that you are paraphrasing.

Which isn't to say we don't all make mistakes.

I have no idea about what Stephen Hanson said.  Most misattributions
are actually paraphrases, whether they be in quotes or not.

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