I recently joined an international nonprofit in public relations.  One of the vision statements that is printed in most of our hardcopy and online messaging is written in a way that makes me bite my cheek every time I hear it.  I brought it to the attention of my boss, who said it was done by higher-ups before she arrived and she's not doing to ruffle any feathers...I pointed out to her that a publication that printed a news release I sent changed the wording so it made grammatical sense.  To avoid identifying the organization, here is a fragment of the offending sentence. "... in every language of the world that needs it by the year.."  ("that needs it?"  "that" modifies language? So a language-not a person or a group - needs something-in this case, our service) Why not say "in every language needed"?    Or anything other than what is being sent out worldwide, even on promotional videos.   Does that bother anyone else, or am I being too uptight?    It seems like someone else would have objected before now if it was much of a faux pas.  I just wanted someone else's opinion whether I should just drop it, or risk some tension by the newbie complaining about what I see as an embarrassing grammatical error. 

Original Post

Hello, happyday, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange.

I understand you want to keep the name and other specific details confidential, but unless you provide us with further linguistic context it will be hard for us to help you. You can write XXX where you feel you need to hide a name, but at least one full sentence will be required for us to understand and try to solve your problem.

happyday posted:

[. . .]"... in every language of the world that needs it by the year.." [. . .] Does that bother anyone else, or am I being too uptight? [. . .]  I just wanted someone else's opinion whether I should just drop it, or risk some tension by the newbie complaining about what I see as an embarrassing grammatical error. 

Hello, happyday, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange.

I stand with Gustavo. It is impossible for us to tell without further context (including more of the sentence, if not the whole thing) what is bothering you. On the contrary, it is possible to imagine the sentence fragment you have posted as a grammatically correct component of a grammatically correct sentence.

Gustavo, Contributor posted:

Hello, happyday, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange.

I understand you want to keep the name and other specific details confidential, but unless you provide us with further linguistic context it will be hard for us to help you. You can write XXX where you feel you need to hide a name, but at least one full sentence will be required for us to understand and try to solve your problem.

Thank you.  The statement is, (and yes, it's a sentence fragment that turns into a run-on sentence as well..ha) "To partner with like-minded ministries to record Scripture in every language of the world that needs it by the year 2033 and make these recordings freely available by every means possible."  What do you think? 

 

David, Moderator posted:
happyday posted:

[. . .]"... in every language of the world that needs it by the year.." [. . .] Does that bother anyone else, or am I being too uptight? [. . .]  I just wanted someone else's opinion whether I should just drop it, or risk some tension by the newbie complaining about what I see as an embarrassing grammatical error. 

Hello, happyday, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange.

I stand with Gustavo. It is impossible for us to tell without further context (including more of the sentence, if not the whole thing) what is bothering you. On the contrary, it is possible to imagine the sentence fragment you have posted as a grammatically correct component of a grammatically correct sentence.

Thanks- hopefully this will clarify- the statement is "To partner with like-minded ministries to record Scripture in every language of the world that needs it by the year 2033 and make these recordings freely available by every means possible."  What do you think? 

 

happyday posted:

Thanks- hopefully this will clarify- the statement is "To partner with like-minded ministries to record Scripture in every language of the world that needs it by the year 2033 and make these recordings freely available by every means possible."  What do you think? 

I see your point. It is not languages but speakers of certain other languages that can be said to need or require those recordings. I agree with you that "needed" sounds more logical:

"To partner with like-minded ministries to record Scripture in every language of the world needed by the year 2033 and make these recordings freely available by every means possible."

However, I'd prefer something like the following for the whole idea to be more clearly conveyed:

"To partner with like-minded ministries to record Scripture in every language of the world where such recordings are needed/required by the year 2033 and make them freely available by every means possible."

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