Passive Voice! Can someone help me rewrite it?


There is no doubt that the entire country was affected by the images being shown. 

asked Aug 03 '12 at 03:50 Lauren New member

I am sorry if I have hurt your feelings. I am the last person to insult you. No one is perfect... that is why pencils have erasers.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 05:16

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3 answers


Sanjay actually asks a profound question. I will expand it into two questions.


Why do you want your sentences, at least those you have posted, to be active voice? Is it a requirement of your teacher's? While it is difficult to tell without being able to read the full context, the sentences you've posted seem apt and direct, even if passive voice. If these sentences are spread amidst many active voice sentences, I would suggest leaving them alone. Often, the passive voice can be a welcome change of pace when used sparingly.


If most of your sentences are passive, Sanjay's question becomes appropriate. Why do you tend to write in the passive voice? Understanding your own inner voice can help you adopt a more active voice.


When I began my research manuscript two years ago, I discovered that I was overusing the passive voice. I did not feel I was qualified to write boldly about my topic. I felt the need to waffle a bit, and the passive voice allowed me to do that. I thought, I will leave the unequivocal statements to the experts. However, I came to realize that I AM the expert on my topic -- I have the degrees and I done the original research. If I can't draw conclusions and make bold statements, who can? With that insight, I found that I no longer felt the need to write in the passive voice.


To your sentence posted here, starting a sentence with "there is" is not only passive, but is considered especially weak. While I don't object to passive sentences in general, I would find a way to rewrite this sentence. Who has no doubt? What caused the country to be affected?

link answered Aug 03 '12 at 05:26 Jeff Pribyl Grammarly Fellow

Mr. Lauren has mistaken me. I am not here to insult anyone. I show up here to improve my skills.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 05:46

Sir, you are all well-qualified to call yourself as an "expert". I am 30 , and my age is your experience in the English language.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 05:53

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Lauren, Grammarly Answers is not part of anything that you pay for.  It is free to the public & those of us who participate are not employees. Most of the regular participants here just like to discuss grammar and help people who are learning. If you have questions about your subscription, you'll need to contact support at the link below. 


There is a point system here.  When a question or answer is given an up vote, the user receives points.   I believe there are only three "levels" assigned to these points.  New member, Contributor, and Expert.  Personally, I think it is a mistake to tie a point system to calling someone an expert.  I don't consider myself an expert, though I am highly proficient.  Unfortunately, even someone who asks good questions can achieve “expert” status on here.  This is meant as no offense to Sanjay, who has greatly improved his understanding and skill.  But the fact that it now says expert under his name is bound to be confusing to new participants. The same could happen with someone who continues asking good questions (getting votes for them) but doesn't improve at all.


The question of passive and active voice is the most common question on this forum.  Since you have asked a few questions about it, it might be helpful for you to look at all the varied answers given to these questions.  In the search field near the top of the page, type in passive or active or both and it will list questions that relate to the topic. 


It is important to know that passive voice is not grammatically incorrect.  Most teachers want you to write in active voice, so the software points it out.  Sometimes, passive voice is the best way to write a sentence.  In general, though, active voice is more appealing to the reader.  

link answered Aug 03 '12 at 05:33 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

Thanks a lot for supporting me. As you said, my job is not to insult anyone. I show up here to learn some good things from you, and not to have a war of words with the new members.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 05:39

Unless & until they change the label from "expert" to something else, I fear this will not be the last time this happens. New members seem inclined to believe that we are truly experts. Why wouldn't they?

Patty TAug 03 '12 at 05:45

I am up-voting you for your answer.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 05:49

Yes, you are absolutely right.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 05:50

Ma'am, You are well-qualified to call yourself as an "expert".

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 05:52

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I fail to understand why  Lauren is bent upon making the sentences in the passive.  Can any of the experts explain this hard fact?

link edited Aug 03 '12 at 04:55 sanjay Expert

Sanjay aren't you an expert? Ask yourself! I didn't know being insulted was included in my subscription fee.

LaurenAug 03 '12 at 05:01

Lauren, Sanjay is still learning English. Over the past 6 months, he has been the most frequent poster of questions. The shear volume of his excellent questions has resulted in his becoming an "expert" just in the past several days. So be kind, he does not mean to insult you.

Jeff PribylAug 03 '12 at 05:10

Thank you for apologizing. I am not bent upon making sentences in the passive. I don't fully understand what that even means. I have yet to take a college level english course. I am taking an undergraduate media class. My next class is english. Hopefully, my professor will help me with understanding passive voice.

LaurenAug 03 '12 at 17:28

Lauren, Even you can become an "expert" if you answer one-hundred questions correctly. If you score 1000 points(100X10 points/questions), then the "expert" label will be automatically displayed on the forum. Just because I have scored 1000 points,do you think I am an expert? No, definitely not. On the positive note, I am going to write an article on active voice versus passive voice for your better understanding.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 17:59

By the way, May I know where you are from.

sanjayAug 03 '12 at 18:01

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