A dialog between two persons, John and Mike, Mike is not a native a speaker:

example 1

M: John, look at this sentence, should I place commas here and here?

J: Yes, place them.

example 2

J: Yes, use them.

As I see it, "use them" is a correct sentence, but I'm not sure about "place them". Is it necessary to specify the placement, either explicitly, like

J: Yes, you are right: place them before "but" and before "and".

or implicitly:

J: Yes, place them exactly this way.

  • The "here" and "here" presumably provide the specificity. Jun 29, 2020 at 20:24
  • @JeffMorrow It is assumed that Mike points the places where he wants to place the commas with a finger. So you think that "Yes, place them" is OK?
    – user90726
    Jun 29, 2020 at 21:30

1 Answer 1


The question, now clarified, does not lack specificity. And

Yes, place them where you have indicated

is a perfectly good answer.

Yes, place them


Yes, use them

are odd because they are silent on the placement of the commas, which was the focus of the question. Neither provides affirmation that the suggested placement is correct. Neither is ungrammatical, but the focus of the question is as much on where should the commas go as much as whether commas should be used at all.

Would you like apricot or peach?

I'd love some fruit

is not a responsive answer.

Do I need to place commas here and here?


is also a good answer if correct. The specifics have already been determined. It is the negative answer that needs further details to be helpful.

No, this comma needs to be there, and this other comma is not needed at all.

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