I am working on some application, My first language is not English, I have some drag and drop box as attached bellow, I have 3 questions:

1+2: Is the marked field at the picture are ok? I'm not sure if I need to add the " 'a' file..."

3: When the user trying to drag more the one file I want to tell him that only file, I added the message screenshot, the messagק is fine?

enter image description here enter image description here

1 Answer 1


In some contexts it's OK to use a form of English in which articles are omitted to make the text more direct and concise. You see this in newspaper headlines, for example. So you could say

Drag file to box below or click to select file

But you need to be consistent; either omit all the articles, or use all the articles:

Drag a file to the box below or click to select a file

This is worded a bit oddly:

Click or drop a file here.

It sounds like you're telling the user to either click a file there, or drop a file there. To improve the wording, you could say:

Click here or drop file here.

Finally, this needs an article:

One file at a time only.

  • Your last sentence begs the question "why can't the word 'a' in 'at a time' be dropped in headlinese?"
    – CJ Dennis
    Mar 13, 2020 at 4:46

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