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Does the following make sense in a want ad?

Our company requires the services of a graphic artist to work in our Tokyo office.

Normally we require a person to do something. The sentence doesn't seem to follow this pattern.

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  • They're called wanted ads, not want ads. But you're "over-analysing" the acceptability of to work there. Native speakers wouldn't see anything wrong with your example unless they were told there was definitely something wrong with the sentence (but even then I doubt they'd all identify that specific aspect of the text as being where the supposed fault lay). Jan 22 '18 at 16:36
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    @FumbleFingers - In the NYC area, I NEVER hear them called "wanted ads"; they're universally "want ads". In the newspaper, the page title is usually "Classified", with the specific type of ad being under the header "Help Wanted". Jan 22 '18 at 16:38
  • @Jeff: I'm surprised. According to Google Books there are a couple of hundred written instances for each of the 4 permutations post/posted a want/wanted ad, but they're not sufficiently common to check that extended context in NGrams for a UK/US usage split. On the other hand, if I just search for a want ad,a wanted ad in NGrams, it would seem the version I know best barely exists at all, on the "global" scale. Jan 22 '18 at 16:51
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Setting aside the issue of want-ads...

The following is not an uncommon (if awkward) construction, and I've punctuated it the way I think it should be parsed:

Our company requires the services of a graphic artist— to work in our Tokyo office.

The infinitive clause to work in our Tokyo office is not a complement of requires:

require {someone} {to do something}

but should be understood as a disjunct addendum that adds some pertinent info about where this graphic artist would be working.

You also see the participle there serving the same purpose:

Our company requires the services of a graphic artist— working in our Tokyo office.

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  • Can it be analyzed as "require the services of a graphic artist (who will be assigned) to work in our Tokyo office?
    – Apollyon
    Jan 22 '18 at 22:28
  • It amounts to much the same thing on a semantic level, but I don't think it's a relative clause. Jan 22 '18 at 23:19
  • If it isn't an infinitive phrase that functions as a relative but a detached modifier, wouldn't it be a dangling modifier?
    – Apollyon
    Jan 23 '18 at 11:25
  • As a clause without a crystal clear relationship to the main clause it does have things in common with the so-called "dangling modifier". Is it subject-oriented, expressing a need of our company? Does it express a condition pertinent to the services of a graphic artist? Or does it do both? Perhaps it is dangling by two threads? Jan 23 '18 at 12:30
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No, the sentence seems to be a combination of:

Our company requires the services of a graphic artist.

and

Our company requires the graphic artist to work in our Tokyo office.

As it is written now it reads like you require the services to work in Tokyo. Better make it two sentences or rewrite it slightly. Examples:

Our company requires the services of a graphic artist.
(S)he is required to work in our Tokyo office.

or:

Our company requires the services of a graphic artist; (s)he will (have to) work in our Tokyo office.

or:

Our company requires the services of a graphic artist, working in/from our Tokyo office.

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  • While your analysis isn't wrong, it doesn't actually reflect the real-world usage; help-wanted advertisements in newspapers and industry journals often charge by the word, so minimizing the number of words becomes important. In the real world, the querent's construction is ubiquitous, not merely common; I would be surprised to see any of your more-verbose alternatives. Jan 22 '18 at 16:58
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    +1. If you're looking to save a few yen: "Tokyo office needs graphic artist". Jan 22 '18 at 17:29
  • @JeffZeitlin I missed the 'ad' part actually, just noticed the sentence not flowing well.
    – user22427
    Jan 22 '18 at 18:49
  • @Tᴚoɯɐuo - if he's looking to save a few yen, he'd likely be writing in Japanese, rather than English. Jan 22 '18 at 19:19
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This is perfectly OK. You aren't specifying the specific duties of the graphic artist, so it is implied that the graphic artist will do all the normal things a graphic artist does, but will do so in and under the direction of the Tokyo office. This construction is quite common, and serves to screen out applicants for the job who would not be willing to relocate to the work location.

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