Use of Passive Voice

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I always wonder why "grammarly" wants us to avoid the use of passive.

Whenever I write something I make a great use of it. In certain cases I am unable to get the other option but grammarly always points it out.

 

Is there anybody who can give some reason for not using passive.

The following is one of the cases objected by grammarly.

 

The sports day is held.....................

asked Jul 14 '12 at 14:34 Rahul Gupta Expert

2 answers


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The use of passive voice is not an error, but is a matter of style. Usually, the active voice is preferred -- studies show readers are more interested and retain more information when the active voice is used.  All writers should become practiced at using the active voice. However, there are many situations where the passive voice is the best choice. And for some writing in the sciences, the passive voice is preferred.

 

I agree that Grammarly misleads the user into thinking passive voice is a problem. However, it is useful to know what in your writing is passive.

 

Personally, I prefer to write in the active voice. If a suitable subject/actor is available, I will use it. I have software that gives me a statistical breakdown of my writing -- I find it useful for self-editing and quality control. For my 150,000 word manuscript, I'm trying to keep my passive clause count below 1% of my sentence count and the use of "to be" verbs between 15% and 17% of the total sentence count. However, my first chapter draft is never so tight. Grammarly helps me find the places where I need to reword and tighten.

link comment answered Jul 14 '12 at 15:46 Jeff Pribyl Grammarly Fellow
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When I was working on my MBA, every single instructor noted that all papers must be written in active voice.  Many of my classmates lost points for using a passive voice.  I know that Grammarly is used by a lot of students and passive voice is indeed an "error" when writing papers for school/college/university.  Perhaps the software was first written for students. 

link answered Jul 14 '12 at 16:10 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

Great explanation! Thank you very much.

sanjayJul 14 '12 at 16:27

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