English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

What's the correct order:

Lessons are not currently being offered.

or

Lessons are currently not being offered.

share|improve this question
up vote 13 down vote accepted

The two sentences are equally correct, and mean the same thing, but the emphasis is slightly different: ... are currently not... emphasizes "currently", while ...are not currently... emphasizes "not".

If you're including the word "currently" because the lack of lessons is a temporary situation, you could write "Lessons are currently not being offered." If, on the other hand, you're including the word "currently" just to soften the blow, then you might write "Lessons are not currently being offered."

Note that the difference in emphasis is pretty subtle, and many people will completely miss it. So if one of the sentences flows better for you, it might be the better choice, regardless of its emphasis.

share|improve this answer
1  
+1: Nice distinction in graf 2. – Robusto Nov 23 '10 at 22:12

Here are the stats from the British National Corpus (BNC), the Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA), and Google:

                                BNC    COCA       Google

ARE NOT CURRENTLY (BEING)     18 (1)  70 (8)   72.6M (21.9M) 
ARE CURRENTLY NOT (BEING)      4 (0)  17 (0)   10.1M ( 9.6M)  
share|improve this answer
3  
These stats are really interesting, it appears that 'currently not' is not currently on the lead :P – Diego Nov 23 '10 at 22:37

I don't see any difference between the two. The meanings of those two sentences are clear and identical.

As RegDwight shows, the former construction is more common, so if you have to choose, I'd go with that one.

share|improve this answer

protected by Rathony Jul 22 at 9:01

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.