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Which usage (be proceed/be processed) is correct in the following sentence? (This is written in a business letter) Are there any differences between these two words? Thanks a lot!

  1. Please be noted that your order won't be "proceeded" until we receive your confirmation.

  2. Please be noted that your order won't be "processed" until we receive your confirmation.

  • "Proceed" cannot be used in the passive sense shown in your option 1, so only option 2 is acceptable. – Hellion Jul 20 '15 at 1:11
  • Thanks, Hellion. Per your comment, is it okay if I write: "We won't proceed your order until we receive your confirmation."? – Sandra Jul 20 '15 at 1:16
  • btw, what's the difference between "until..." & "not... until"? – Sandra Jul 20 '15 at 1:17
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Proceed is an "intransitive" verb: it cannot be used with a direct object, only with a subject. That is, you cans say "X proceeds", but not "We proceed X".

As such, you also cannot use the passive voice ("be proceeded") since the point of passive is to express that an object gets acted upon; since there can be no object, there can be no valid passive form.

Process has no such limitation; indeed, as it is a transitive verb, it requires an object.

Thus your second sentence is the more correct option.

(However, "Please be noted" should be either "Please note" or "Please be aware".)

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The second is correct. "Preceded means "come before," and doesn't make sense here.

  • Thanks Michael! Could you clarify the reason you used a comma before "we cannot proceed...."? Is it okay to write, "Please be noted that..."? – Sandra Jul 20 '15 at 1:21
  • Many of my students use "please be noted that..." when writing business correspondence. We don't use this construction. We say "Please note that..." It is an imperative (command) and commonly accepted. So your sentence should read "Please note that your order cannot be processed until we receive your confirmation." – michael_timofeev Jul 20 '15 at 1:25
  • I don't have the comma sentence anymore because I edited my original post because there was an ambiguity about your question...see my edited post. – michael_timofeev Jul 20 '15 at 1:27

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