The sentence I'm writing is:

The fitness industry makes a lot of money from misinformation, or the lack thereof.

What I really want to say is:

The fitness industry makes a lot of money from misinformation, or the lack of correct information.

Is there a better way to phrase what I want to say? I feel that using lack thereof on misinformation (the negative) refers to the absence of misinformation (which I actually mean to be present), instead of the absence of correct information (the positive).

  • In your first example, the lack thereof will indeed be the lack of misinformation, which is not what you want to say. I however fail to understand why the second choice is not acceptable? Oct 12, 2016 at 9:29
  • Thanks. I'm just going by feel here--the second one sounds repetitive to me.
    – MLQ
    Oct 12, 2016 at 12:01
  • It is a little repetitive, but there's a difference in meaning between "misinformation" and "lack of correct information" (motive/cause of the situation) - but ultimately it depends on the context of what you want to say and whether you need the "lack of" part at all. Oct 12, 2016 at 12:03
  • 1
    @MattQuiros it would emphasize your point that the to problems are different, and make the sentence less repetitive if you used 'and' instead of 'or' in your second choice.
    – Mathily
    Oct 12, 2016 at 17:10
  • 1
    Using an and would change the meaning. Oct 12, 2016 at 17:23

1 Answer 1


You could rephrase the sentence to include the consumer.

The fitness industry makes a lot of money from poorly informed and misinformed consumers.

As stated, your second option suggests that the correct information doesn't exist yet in the universe, which could well be true or what you mean, but it feels like you should pin it on the consumers instead of the state of knowledge about exercise and health. Alternately, if you point is that we just don't know much about exercise, I think you have a great option already.

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