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I wonder what is the correct form of using 'to have something done' in future continuous.

As example let's take a hypothetical situation that a new island has just been discovered and the explorer says that he thinks that new islands will keep to be discovered in the future.

Is it correct to say: "I think that new islands will keep be having/getting discovered in the next 5 years"?

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    Keep getting discovered is fine, but it should be keep being discovered, not keep be having discovered. Nov 24, 2019 at 6:47

2 Answers 2

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The form you are looking for is

I think that new islands will keep having been discovered in the next 5 years

but it is very unlikely anybody would say that. There is no need for a future perfect, because there is no reason to establish a temporal focus after the period (which is what the perfect does). But it is possible.

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  • Yes, sure you're right. Looks like I just made a mistake by mentioning future perfect. What I was was going to write is of course "I wonder what is the correct form of using 'to have something done' in future continuous".
    – s0nicYouth
    Nov 21, 2019 at 13:23
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I can understand why you have tried to use Keep, but it is not correct here, "continue" is more appropriate:

"I think that new islands will continue to be discovered in the next 5 years"

KEEP: (verb)

  1. To have or retain possession of. For example - "My father would a;ways keep the best for himself."
  2. To continue or cause to continue in a specified condition, position, course, etc.

CONTINUE: (Verb)

  1. To persist in an activity or process.
  2. To recommence or resume after an interruption.

The problem is "Having Been; been as the past participle of be, cannot apply to something that is going to continue in the future.

However, you could keep on discovering islands in the next 5 years, if you look very carefully...

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  • There is nothing wrong with "keep X-ing" in an informal register. (But it wasn't me that downvoted you)
    – Colin Fine
    Nov 21, 2019 at 13:47
  • I agree, "keep travelling...", "keep [on] dancing...". The reason for my objection in this case is "keep 'having been'... Been as the past participle of be, cannot apply to something that is going to continue in the future. That is why "KEEP" is is not correct here.
    – NeilB
    Nov 21, 2019 at 18:59
  • Of course been can apply to something that is going to continue in the future. "Tomorrow I shall ask you where you have been this week".
    – Colin Fine
    Nov 21, 2019 at 19:51
  • Nice try Colin, but unfortunately you are using 'been' as the past participle of be, to mean "visited" or "travelled to" in the past. The fact that you are placing this past event at some time in the future does not change the fact that 'been' is describing an event that will be in the past, when it is described - in the future. The future relates to the act of describing where you have been - in the past.
    – NeilB
    Nov 23, 2019 at 10:22
  • And the having been discovered will be in the past from the viewpoint five years in the future.
    – Colin Fine
    Nov 23, 2019 at 22:08

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