General Question

nina's avatar

What do you think of using s/he as an alternative to extremely annoying she/he?

Asked by nina (895points) August 6th, 2008

Still gender-neutral but shorter than he/she.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

23 Answers

loser's avatar

Depends on your gender neutral needs.

gailcalled's avatar

We had a huge discussion here and decided that it was easier, if possible, to use a plural noun as subject. Viz: “People have trouble with their objective pronouns,”

I can’t find the question, of course.

flyawayxxballoon's avatar

I’m personally not a fan of it…Why? I just don’t like the way it looks…no real reason.
If I were to combine the two, I would go with (s)he, but no matter what, my preference is still he/she. =)

sndfreQ's avatar

Works until someone thinks you’re calling them a hermaphrodite! Just kidding, seriously, either work for me. sorry in advance to the intersexed, bad joke

richardhenry's avatar

What happened to ‘them’? It’s like typing ‘j/k’. Are you really saving calories with that? In my opinion, ‘s/he’ quite badly breaks the rhythm.

arnbev959's avatar

I hate “s/he”.

I really hate “them”.

I always go with plural, or else “he or she”.

richardhenry's avatar

@petethepothead: Why do you hate ‘them’? C’mon, following example:

Person A: This person got really badly hurt the other day.

Person B: Why, what happened to them?

is much better than:

Person A: This person got really badly hurt the other day.

Person B: Why, what happened to he or she?

richardhenry's avatar

Person A: My boss is looking for a new desk, their current one is falling apart.

Person B: They should check out that furniture store on Threadneedle Street.

is much better than:

Person A: My boss is looking for a new desk, their current one is falling apart.

Person B: He or she should check out that furniture store on Threadneedle Street.

richardhenry's avatar

Not only is it shorter, but you sound more friendly and concise! The word they, free at participating word emporiums! Terms and conditions apply

richardhenry's avatar

The word they, now replacing “s/he”! Not only is it the same amount of characters, but it doesn’t contain a distracting slash! I’m not even going to mention that “he/she” is 50% longer

robmandu's avatar

@richardhenry, where were you when I posted the Q that gailcalled referenced?

richardhenry's avatar

@robmandu: Sleeping. It has to happen sometimes. :)

robmandu's avatar

@richardhenry, oh ho, no sir, not that easy. You’re a moderator. You shall ne’er sleep until the Collective itself lays down its (their?) weary head. ;-D

sndfreQ's avatar

@rob: them weary heads!

Megan64's avatar

I use s/he all the time in writing.

timothykinney's avatar

I prefer it and I use it frequently. I also use count/ess from time to time.

Zaku's avatar

How about just using he, or she, and not being preoccupied with being thought sexist, which was what was done before it got silly. Is anyone actually bothered by using she or he randomly?

Megan64's avatar

I’m bothered by it. You got to put one out there for the sisters!

jballou's avatar

The problem with using s/he is that it’s not really pronounceable. Sure when writing you save yourself 2 characters, but is it really that big a deal to include them?

And the problem with “them” is that it’s grammatically incorrect. It’s always plural.

That being said, do whatever you want, it’s not like your high school English teacher is following you around watching your every movement. I’m sure people probably understand what you mean if you write s/he, although “she/he” is much clearer and “he or she” is the clearest of all.

gailcalled's avatar

Cheat:The simplest and easiest way is to always either make the antecedent plural;

“People like their pancakes hot” rather than “Everyone likes <oops, now what) pancakes hot.”

It is easy to sneak around RH’s examples;

“This person got really badly hurt.” Use name.” Richard (or Gail) got really badly hurt.”
“What happened to him? What happened to her?”

(And never “What happened to he (or she).”

Similar for “My boss.” Presumably, I know his or her sex.

Formality counts in written English. We all slop around when we speak; “It’s me,” for example.

pathfinder's avatar

I prefer Mr /Mrs instead.I mean in apllycation forms or in the office any way it is quilet personal without that the system could works bether.

Answer this question

Login

or

Join

to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
or
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther