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Re: Bug#169533: reportbug vs. ^z suspend and spurious message

On Nov 18, Dan Jacobson wrote:
> so, at least lets pretend we cant see the final line... or we read
> in a hurry: we will think the report has already been sent unless we
> read to the very final line.  therefore please change
> Report will be sent to Debian Bug Tracking System<..>
> to
> Send this report to Debian Bug Tracking System<..>?

"Will be" is the future tense of the verb "to be".  By way of
contrast, "has been" is the past sense of the verb "to be".  So if
something "will be" sent, by definition it *has not been sent yet*.

I suppose we could be all wishy-washy and put it as "Report might be
sent if you bother to answer yes to the following question," but
that's wordy.  Especially since "Report will be sent" has a clear
meaning indicating that the report has not yet been sent, and 999/1000
times you will be sending the report (most people don't launch
reportbug and draft bug reports just to amuse themselves; perhaps you
are the exception to this rule).

For example, the sentence "Iraq will be found to be in material breach
of its obligations to the security council if it fails to fully
disclose its development programs of biological, chemical,
radiological, and nuclear weapons." implies that Iraq has not yet been
found to be in material breach, and that Iraq is not currently (as of
the time the sentence was written, at least) in material breach.
However, at some future point in time, Iraq may be found to be in
material breach, if the conditions are fulfilled.

Accordingly, because I believe in the concept of causality, I am
closing this report.  (Present tense; when you receive this, the
report will have been closed, but as I draft this, it will be closed
at some future point in time.)

Chris Lawrence <cnlawren@phy.olemiss.edu> - http://blog.lordsutch.com/

Computer Systems Manager, Physics and Astronomy, Univ. of Mississippi
125B Lewis Hall - 662-915-5765

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