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Given a picture like this: http://www.mediate.com/mpdimages/ACF3301.jpg

what's the most appropriate expression to describe it?

  1. The balance is tilted.
  2. The balance tilts.
  3. The balance has been tilted.
  4. The balance is tilting.

What I want to say is the balance is not level (now).

  • Balances (Scales) are usually "tipped" not tilted. Or sometimes they are "uneven" – Jim Aug 12 '14 at 5:41
  • If you are looking for a caption, why not go for 'imbalance?' – Maulik V Aug 12 '14 at 6:01
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  1. The balance is tilted.
    • Looks like a good choice to describe the picture. Especially if you're looking for a caption below a single picture.
  2. The balance tilts.
    • Looks like a newspaper headline, describing a momentous state that could change the next second. ("The balance tilts this very second") Gives the sense of immediacy.
  3. The balance has been tilted.
    • Will do if the picture is one in a sequence, and the preceding picture displays the scales in a different balance, or even fully balanced. Or if we want the reader to bear in mind that the balance has undergone changes. ("The balance now in this exact position, to which it arrived through tilting").
  4. The balance is tilting.
    • Will also do if there's a sequence of pictures showing the process of balance change. The implication is that the balance may yet tilt some more. ("And now, see, the balance is in the process of tilting"). That is, the picture could be followed by subsequent pictures showing how the balance is tilting from that point on.

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