Do these three idioms mean the same thing?

"to take a stand"

"to take a side"

"to take a position"

The context is this: "Wikipedia should not take a side but just share with the readers the different opinions objectively."


The question can be answered using Google search, however, here's the basic information:

  1. "Take a stand"

    • To publicly express an opinion
    • (against someone or something) - To take a position in opposition to someone or something; to oppose or resist someone or something.
    • Adopt a firm position about an issue, as in She was more than willing to take a stand on abortion rights.
    • Alludes to the military sense of stand, "hold one's ground against an enemy."
    • To publicly express an opinion about something, especially to say whether you support or are against something (usually + on)
  2. "Take a side" - also take somebody's side and take the side of somebody

    • To agree with or support someone; side with somebody.
    • (take sides) - To choose one side of an argument.
    • (take sides) - To support one person, group, or opinion over another.
    • (take sides) - Support or favor one party in a dispute.
    • (take sides) - To associate with and support a particular faction, group, cause, or person..
  3. "Take a position"

    • To buy or sell short; that is to own or to owe some amount on an asset or derivative security.
    • (take up a position) - To start in the job.
  • Thank you 1+ If I understand well, then the 1st and the 2nd are pretty equal while the 3rd one is the exception. Isn't it? – Judicious Allure May 22 '17 at 13:09
  • I've heard other contexts where "take a position" meant something different, however, I don't have any proof and can't find those now but well, yes, it does mean something very different from the first two. Generally, the 1-st and 2-nd idioms aren't equal. Only the "take a stand against" and "take the side of somebody" are close in meaning. – SovereignSun May 22 '17 at 13:12
  • As regards "take a position", you have chosen very specific meanings. There is a sense where it is quite close to the other two e.g. "The politician took a position which neither supported the Government or the Opposition". – WS2 May 22 '17 at 16:15

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.