A query message to an online seller:

(hyperlink to the product)

Wanna buy but I'm not quite sure if it's genuine or not cz I saw a review by one of your buyers, he/he'd uploaded a photo taken on this device which is very noisy and quite lame for a 41 mp camera.

Should I use past perfect after 'I saw a review' ? as past perfect follows past simple.

for example,

I was having my dinner when you had called

  • your example sounds weird it means that while you were eating, the person had finished calling you it would be better to use past simple while you were eating a person called and you did not finish your dinner
    – Yves Lefol
    Commented Nov 24, 2018 at 7:52
  • yeah that's what I meant. By you'd called I mean I could not pick the call up
    – user422389
    Commented Nov 24, 2018 at 15:15
  • commas are mandatory by the way. You were supposed to put a comma after while you were eating otherwise people might think you're a cannibal :p
    – user422389
    Commented Nov 24, 2018 at 15:17
  • The whole style of the comment is ultra casual and rather rude. Nobody will care about the subtle difference between "uploaded" and "had uploaded".
    – James K
    Commented Nov 24, 2018 at 15:40
  • yeah @James after all it's a complaint. It's oughta be rude 😂
    – user422389
    Commented Nov 24, 2018 at 15:48

2 Answers 2


I think you should use was instead of is if you want to use past perfect, if you use is past simple is fine but I am not a native

  • where should I use was instead of is?
    – user422389
    Commented Nov 24, 2018 at 14:52

Yes, you should use past perfect because the uploading occurred before the seeing, and the seeing is in the past.

I saw a review by one of your buyers: he had uploaded a photo...

The eating example is not the same thing at all. You are talking about two things that happened at the same time - the eating and the calling - so it should be:

I was having my dinner when you called

If the eating had occurred before the call (which is in the past), the eating would be in the past perfect:

I had eaten when you called

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