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

Lets say I'm asking a question on a popular question and answer website, and I want to close by saying that I will appreciate any submitted ideas.

The first seems awkward because at the moment of writing there aren't any ideas yet.

The second makes it sound like I would appreciate any ideas, if I wasn't a misanthropic sociopath that doesn't appreciate anyone.

Edit: I suppose I could also use the verb "will", but what if it's a really unhelpful idea? Seems like the job for a verb that implies more committal than "would", but less than "will"...

I'm probably over-thinking, but it bugs me!

share|improve this question

Why not just say "I would appreciate any ideas?" This article and others make a good case for using the active voice.

The reason for saying "would be appreciated" as opposed to "are appreciated" is that the ideas haven't come in yet.

share|improve this answer
@Reg: I guess a better answer would be that the OP is over-thinking. I'll add a citation for preferring the active voice, and an explanation about the proper tense. – Larry Coleman Jan 6 '11 at 14:07

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

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