I'm working on a webpage that has a form on it where the user can type into a box, or pick some options instead to fill it for them.

If I am writing about a choice of options, and splitting that over two lines, should it be written:

Enter your name in the form above

or pick Liz [_], Charles [_], William [_]

Or should it be:

Enter your name in the form above, or

Pick Liz [_], Charles [_], William [_]

To me the first one seems to read better, but I then have the concern that it from just reading that one line it isn't clear that there is another option. But adding a comma and an 'or' to the end of that line just looks clunky.

I guess there's a third option; having a middle line with the 'or' in there (kind of how I've structured this question) but that's going to add a whole lot extra space for potentially very little benefit. (Space is at a premium in web design, so a whole extra line of content that just has the word 'or' is maybe not ideal.

  • 3
    You could probably put or... at the end of the first line. Isn't this a UX question? ;-)
    – Andrew Leach
    Jun 3, 2015 at 16:04
  • click close, no need to comment
    – Fattie
    Jun 3, 2015 at 16:10
  • 1
    I don't think it's a UX one. Not primarily, although is related. My question concerns the correct usage of coordinated conjuctions - that's English Language.
    – JonW
    Jun 3, 2015 at 16:11
  • I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it's about User Interface layout choices, not English usage as such. Jun 3, 2015 at 16:20
  • I don't agree, FF. It's about how to use layout to make meaning clear and guide the reader. It would apply to something typed or handwritten too. Think of it as paragraph construction, which it is in a way.
    – Margana
    Jun 3, 2015 at 16:24

2 Answers 2


Hmm. Perhaps something like-

Either: a) Enter your name in the box above,

or b) Pick Liz [ ] Charles [ ]

The "either" on the first line flags up the coming "or" on the next, so preparing the reader for the choice.


In a list the 'or' comes at the end of the penultimate line.

cats, or;
  • OK. So, why is that?
    – JonW
    Jun 4, 2015 at 5:17

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