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When I'm asking a person about something where should I put a person's name? Which of the following is correct?

  1. Jem do you know....?
  2. Do you know Jem...?
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You might be interested in our sister site specifically for English Language Learners. –  RegDwigнt Feb 6 '13 at 12:15
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Tom, why didn't you read the instructions first? Why didn't you read the instructions first, Tom? Why, Tom, didn't you read the instructions first? Why didn't you (Tom) read the instructions first? –  GEdgar Feb 6 '13 at 13:12
    
@GEdgar: Thanks! –  sll Feb 6 '13 at 15:05
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1 Answer

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Either. Both lack commas to separate the clause which specifies who you are addressing from what you are asking:

Jem, do you know…?

Do you know, Jem,…?

Without that, the first is strange and the second would appear at first to be asking someone if they knew Jem.

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Thanks this makes sense for me –  sll Feb 6 '13 at 15:05
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