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Should I add 'of' after gerunds to introduce an object? For example, which one is correct:

The advent of social media has had a huge impact on sharing information.

or

The advent of social media has had a huge impact on the sharing of information.

? Both? In other words, do gerunds function as nouns or as verbs in such instances? Let me stress the fact that my question is not "how can I say it best" so don't suggest rephrasing (yes, "on how people share information" sounds better, but it's not the point, you can make your own example if you don't like mine).

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    Just want to say I feel your frustration when it comes to people giving "helpful" rephrasings that are not at all what you asked – the-baby-is-you May 25 at 8:22
  • Yes, you could. The difference between the two examples is that "sharing information" is a clause in the first, where "sharing" is a verb, while "the sharing of information" is a noun phrase in the second, where "sharing" is a noun. – BillJ May 25 at 9:27
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Gerund is a double parts of speech : partly a verb and partly a noun.

"The advent of social media has had a huge impact on sharing information."

Here, sharing is a gerund. Like a verb, it has an object 'information'. Like a noun, it is used as an object of preposition 'on'.

"The advent of social media has had a huge impact on the sharing of information."

Here, sharing is used only as a noun (as the object of the preposition 'on'). It is called a verbal noun. In this sentence, 'information' is NOT the object of 'sharing', it's the object of the preposition 'of'.

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  • Indirect object? That's what I'm tought to call it – Sergey Zolotarev May 25 at 12:34

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