There I was, enjoying the Bieganski Art Festival with my wife; an ideal way to relax after a day at the language school, helping students improve on their English skills. Even though the event was being held in Valletta, a 5-minute ferry ride from my work place in Sliema, I had already managed to disconnect from the language problems I had dealt with that day.
Until, that is, I stumbled upon an artist’s clipboard, inviting anyone who wanted MORE
INFORMATIONS to write down their name and email address. The word informations transported me back to the classroom faster than any ferry could. I hear this error over and over again. Folks, information is a plural word so there is no need for an ‘s’ at the end. It’s also the reason why an information is wrong. We can’t say “a cars”, “a friends” or “an apples”, can we? Since “a” means “one”, it must only be used with singular words. The text on that clipboard should read: If you want to have some information …
And if you need to emphasize the singular aspect, that it’s only one and not some? Then use the phrase “a piece of” – I have a piece of information for you.
Use it or you lose it!
There are some other common words which have the same rule as information. Do you know them? Write in and tell me which they are.