Which of the following is correct:

People ask me, what Google.com is?


People ask me, what is Google.com?

  • Updated it now. – Chris Dowdeswell Dec 15 '11 at 13:14
  • Jeez harsh crowd, no need to down vote, maybe give some guidance as to what I can do to improve, they aren't this rude over at overflow. – Chris Dowdeswell Dec 15 '11 at 13:17
  • I don't see rudeness. If you hover over the downvote arrow, you will see that a downvote means "This question does not show any research effort; it is unclear or not useful". We would love to give you guidance to improve, but for that we'd need to know what you are actually trying to ask. – RegDwigнt Dec 15 '11 at 13:28
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    The problem statement is of the form Q1 or Q2 where Q1 and Q2 are quoted questions. The problem statement itself is not a sentence, not a question. True, the title of the problem statement contains a question, but its relation to the text of the problem is ambiguous. – James Waldby - jwpat7 Dec 15 '11 at 16:44
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    I don't see the problem with the question. Yes, you have to take the title in conjunction with the body to understand what is being asked. Are you insisting that the body of the question must repeat the title? Why? Why insist on redundancy? – Jay Dec 15 '11 at 18:40

The correct formulation is what my idea is. It's called a "noun clause" or a "content clause." The other order is used for asking questions. It could be used in a direct quotation (e.g., People ask me, "What is your idea?" Notice, however, the change in pronouns.

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    The first form is incorrect because of the presence of the punctuation. It would be perfectly valid to say, "People ask me what Google is." But that is not a question, it is a statement. The second is incorrect because you omitted the quotes. You could write, "People ask me, 'What is Google?'" In that case you are quoting a question. – Jay Dec 15 '11 at 18:42
  • It was OK before the edit. – Brett Reynolds Dec 16 '11 at 12:45

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