0

Is this sentence correct?

For stars, engaging in conflicts likely harms their reputation

I mean, using the sentence pattern like: for (somebody), doing something (+verb) + noun

3
  • 1
    Welcome to ELL.SE. As a reminder, this is not a proofreading service. If you can explain why you think the sentence is or is not correct in your own words, however, we can help you work through the applicable grammar, I strongly encourage you to take the site tour and review the help center for additional guidance.
    – choster
    Dec 29, 2020 at 17:09
  • 1
    For stars, engaging in conflicts IS likely TO harm their reputation. (the idiomatic expression is "to be likely to do something").
    – fev
    Dec 29, 2020 at 17:17
  • 3
    See this article talking about why at least some people (mainly Brits, and certainly including me) don't like the cited usage of likely (with no preceding copula TO BE, and followed by the "tensed" verb form harms). For me, that usage is very "colloquial, slangy", compared to ...engaging in conflicts is likely to harm their reputation - especially given that engaging in conflicts is a relatively "elevated" register (effectively, a posh way of saying fighting here). Dec 29, 2020 at 17:50

1 Answer 1

1

In US usage at least the form

For stars, engaging in conflicts likely harms their reputation

is perfectly acceptable and not uncommon. It may be considered a reduced form of

For stars, engaging in conflicts IS likely TO harm their reputation.

But I don't actually think so. The word "likely " here functions as an adverb, modifying "harms". The comment by @FumbleFingers suggests that such a use of "likely" is "colloquial". But I don't see it that way at all, if anything I see it more in semi-formal registers, including some academic writing of a recent vintage.

Whether the more general form given in the question as "for (somebody), doing something (+verb) + noun" works well will depend very much on the verb in question, and exactly how "doing something" is expressed.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .