蘇老師專欄

[ 2020-07-13 ]

〈談文論譯〉表格上的「其他」是 other,不是 others   蘇正隆

在填表格/問卷時常有一個選項是「其他」。
In a survey question, you often see this "Other (please specify: _________)" listed at the bottom of response options.

在台灣及香港常見把「其他」這個選項的英文寫成 *Others,其實英文習慣的寫法是 Other。有時會在 Other 之後再加上 Please specify 或 specify。

見以下幾個例子:
Applications must be submitted through the Online Application Form. ... You are encouraged to complete your online application as soon as possible, ... Relationship may include: employer, supervisor/mentor, co-worker, other (please specify). 
(INITIATIVEwww.equityinitiative.org › online-application-form)
……………………..
What is your favorite color?
○ Red ○ Blue ○ Green ○ Other
(community.articulate.com › articles › how-to-use-an-ot...)
……………………………..
How do you pay your purchase? 
○ Credit card online ○ Cheque by mail ○ Paypal ○ Other  
What was the main reason for your return? 
○ Wrong size ○ Wrong color ○ Damaged ○ Other  
When is the best time to call you? 
○ Mornings ○ Evenings ○ Afternoons ○ Weekends Only ○ Other
(www.jotform.com › form-templates › category › survey)

華人社會常見把表格/問卷上的「其他」寫成 *Others,大概是受到諸如 “Economy, Finances, Marketing and others” 之類句型的影響。我就曾收到一位熱心讀者的來信,以為我們出版的書上把「其他」寫成Other是 Others 之誤。

英文習慣寫 Other 是因為 Other 之後是空白,要你自填資訊,以上述問卷為例,是 Other relationship, Other color, Other ways to pay, Other reason, Other time  的意思。表格/問卷上的「其他」不寫 *Others,是因為這樣就意味 *Others relationship,*Others color, *Others ways to pay…,英文就不通了。
Others is a pronoun and is NOT followed by a noun.  (www.grammar.cl › english › another-other-others) 
(Jerome Su, July 10, 2020, Revised July 12)