Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Apostrophical query:

  • a) Buyers Remorse
  • b) Buyer Remorse
  • c) Buyer's Remorse
  • d) Buyers' Remorse

My guess is b or c, as it seems like any example is talking about the remorse of one specific buyer, but since it is a collective term that happens universally, perhaps the possessive plural is accurate. I suppose there’s potential that it’s a context-sensitive decision, deciding whether you are talking about exactly one buyer or about buyers in general.

share|improve this question
    
Related question: baker's dozen. –  Peter Shor Aug 27 '12 at 3:53
add comment

2 Answers 2

up vote 24 down vote accepted

Yes, it does happen to everyone, but the remorse belongs to each person individually. "Buyer's remorse" is the remorse experienced by a buyer. So the answer is (c).

Wikipedia agrees. Similarly the Corpus of Contemporary American English gives 36 examples of "buyer's remorse", but "buyer remorse" has just 1, and there are no results for either "buyers' remorse" or "buyers remorse".

share|improve this answer
1  
Wikipedia is full of misusages and absurdities, such as virtually every article being plastered with the word "portmanteau" whether or not it's appropriate. Quoting Wikipedia as an example of good English usage is highly questionable. –  delete Aug 6 '10 at 1:19
9  
Not quoting Wikipedia as an example of good English usage here. Quoting Wikipedia as an example of what the standard common name for something is. –  nohat Aug 6 '10 at 1:21
4  
Wikipedia aside, the reasoning -- based on the purpose of apostrophes -- is perfect. +1 @nohat –  Pops Aug 6 '10 at 5:36
    
Agreed, you should definitely remove the reference to "wikipedia" from an otherwise perfect answer. –  Joe Blow Jun 13 '11 at 21:49
    
Caveat Emptor!! –  Brad Oct 10 '13 at 21:01
add comment

All of these except a) are grammatically correct, so it's a style decision.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

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.