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Suppose you enumerate points of some list, adding "check" after each one. How to speak about the reverse of a "check" (i.e. omission or an opposite for the item)?

Like if you have:

  • Big scary horns ☑
  • 180° mounth ☑
  • 50-cm claws ☑
  • Predatory glare ☒

and say

Look there! Such a beast: big scary horns — check; yawning mouth — check; loooong claws — check; predatory glare — _____, hovewer..

Variants that come to mind:

  • "no check"
  • "ex"
  • "miss"
  • "no"
  • "without check"
  • "cross"
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3  
In this context, check just means yes, so the opposite is no. –  FumbleFingers Jan 16 '13 at 1:43

6 Answers 6

up vote 4 down vote accepted

I usually say uncheck in this context.

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2  
That seems quite strange to me. ‘Uncheck’ to me means that the options have already been checked and are now being returned to their original state of not being checked. If you are going through a list of things to check for, and you cannot answer in the positive for one of those things, you’re not unchecking it. –  Janus Bahs Jacquet Sep 3 '13 at 19:26

The word you select must be strong enough to overcome the assumption by the listener that the characteristic you have just named is present. That is, the listener will have mentally "checked it off" as you say it.

To overcome this tendency, you need to place the negative indicator before the label when speaking. I suggest:

"Look there! Such a beast: big scary horns - check, yawning mouth - check, loooong claws - check; but no predatory glare ....".

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I like:

Predatory glare, negatory.

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4  
Maybe better "negative"? –  Vi0 Jan 16 '13 at 0:52
    
@Vi0: Sure, but negatory has this military/trucker-slang thing going for it. Depends what you're looking for. –  Callithumpian Jan 16 '13 at 0:56
1  
Or maybe Nope –  Jim Jan 16 '13 at 1:31

I have used "missing", "unsure", "pending" in such cases. I have also used expletives.

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The term (in the context of lists) means "Yes, I agree - continue with the next item."

You need a word which is short, snappy, and means the opposite - that word is "STOP"

i.e. - Stop the list - we need to discuss this item.

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How about absent as one is processing the list?

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