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I came across this sentence in a blog.. "You'll receive no more than 1-2 emails per week, as we hate spam just as much as you. "

While I appreciate the sentiment, i can't help but wonder if they hate me! So here's my question : Is this sentence correct? To me, it seems like it should be "we hate spam just as much as you DO".

In the third person though, there are two different forms, owing to two different words for the subject pronoun and object pronoun (unlike "you")
1."we hate spam just as much as SHE". (girl + bloggers hate spam)
2."we hate spam just as much as HER". (bloggers hate girl + spam)

Since this is not the case with "you", should there absolutely be a "do" at the end of the sentence, or are we supposed to just understand it based on context? Or is "we hate spam just as much as you" the actual right way of conveying that they hate spam, making me completely wrong (and a little paranoid)?

  • Yes, based on context the meaning is pretty clear to native speaker and yes, "we hate spam just as much as we hate you" would be more correct and explicit. – ElendilTheTall Jan 6 '14 at 9:01
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    I think you are right that they are saying they hate you just as much as they have spam. What a terrible company. – virmaior Jan 6 '14 at 9:09
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    @ElendilTheTall So you're saying, having a "do" is not necessary, IF the context is clear. If a certain shady character were saying the same thing, and it were possible for us to derive either meaning, we'd want him to make it more explicit. – insanity Jan 6 '14 at 9:36
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    Yes. But you could say that about any ambiguous statement :) – ElendilTheTall Jan 6 '14 at 9:38
  • Grammatically speaking the do is required. However, it is so common and better-sounding to drop the do so as not to appear overly-academic. It works in informal and semi-formal writing, including e-mail and routine business correspondence. No need to worry, or you may be thought to be pedantic. – Kris Jan 6 '14 at 11:26
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The three rules of writing for the web, in order of priority, are:

  1. Keep it accessible.
  2. Keep it clear. Never force the reader to stop and think.
  3. Keep it short.

So the question is: did you have to stop and think about whether they hate you or spam? If you did, even for a nano-second, then you do is better, because it clears up the ambiguity (Rule 2). Otherwise, you is better because it's shorter (Rule 3).

As for grammaticality, as much as you and as much as you do are both acceptable.

The rule you cite about writing as much as she rather than as much as her is, to say the least, debatable. It's a holdover from the 18th century fashion for making formal writing sound more like Latin. It may be appropriate to follow this rule in some very formal texts, but not in a blog.

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Grammatically speaking, the do is necessary. I disagree that inclusion of the 'do' is academic. It avoids ambiguity, and is good grammar (which is important if your / the email's audience includes people who would care about such things). Without the 'do', the sentence would be deemed 'colloquial'.

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    I don't think that's true. There's no requirement to restate the verb in comparisons. Compare "Bob's as tall as Ada" "I ate more than Maria", "My elephant's bigger than yours" These are in no way ungrammatical. They are clunky the other way round: "Bob's as tall as Ada is", "I ate more than Maria ate", "My elephants bigger than yours is". Even in formal writing... compare "The FTSE has consistently fared better than the Dow Jones" versus "The FTSE has consistently fared better than the Dow Jones has" – Araucaria Jul 12 '14 at 20:08

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