"Would you mind completing the following?:"

Is the above correct?

  • 3
    I can only guess you misspelled punctuation as grammar, otherwise I have no idea what you even mean. – RegDwigнt Mar 11 '13 at 20:17
  • @fox Do you mean that the question itself enumerates options in a list? For instance, Would you mind completing the following: checking the mail, ordering lunch, and locking the storeroom? If so, please edit your question. – choster Mar 11 '13 at 20:24
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    I would eliminate the question and just put "Please complete the following:" – Kristina Lopez Mar 11 '13 at 20:31
  • Please never just ask “Is this correct?” It shows no effort on your part, and gives us nothing to go on. As the Help Center says in its “How to ask a good question” section: “Have you thoroughly searched for an answer before asking your question? Sharing your research helps everyone. Tell us what you found and why it didn’t meet your needs. This demonstrates that you’ve taken the time to try to help yourself, it saves us from reiterating obvious answers, and above all, it helps you get a more specific and relevant answer!” Thank you. – tchrist Jul 4 '14 at 2:14

You don't need a colon there. Either "the following" stands on its own or you should state what needs to be completed. For example, you could say "Would you mind completing the following survey?"

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Both @Gillian and @KristinaLopez make good points in that your request could use some rephrasing. However, it's also worth noting that, while this rule (or suggestion perhaps?) is arguably ignored more often than followed, requests (or subjunctive constructions) used as questions don't use question marks, for example, "Would you please close the window." I know this is specified in Chicago (6.69 in edition 16), but I can't comment on other style guides.

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