On 22 September 2015 at 10:52, Gavin Flower <gavinflo...@archidevsys.co.nz>

> On 22/09/15 21:33, Geoff Winkless wrote:
>> ​​
>> Without wanting to get into a grammar war, ​I'm not so sure I agree that
>> it "condones" it. Dictionaries reflect the current state of usage, they
>> don't act as arbiters of correctness. The abuse of "literally" as an
>> emphasiser (which usage is now listed in the OED) is a prime example.
>> I would prefer "his or her" over "their". Perhaps our American cousins
>> might disagree though.
>> I prefer "their" rather than "his or her", it is less clumsy & there is
> no point in specifying gender unless it is relevant!

I agree in that I prefer "their" in informal speech; however in a formal
document I would find it sloppy.​ I don't think "his or her" is inherently
clumsy; m
aybe I'm just showing my age.​

Besides, some people are neither, or their biological gender is ambiguous -
> so a few people fit into neither the male nor the female category
> (depending on precise definitions, about 0.5%)!

My understanding is that most intersex (and certainly all trans) people
would identify with one or the other, and even those who don't select
exclusively identify with a mix of both (and would therefore still be
covered by "his or her", no?) although I don't pretend to be an expert.

Perhaps it would be easier to avoid the controversy by actually rewording
into the plural, where possible?


"any user can make such a change for his session."


"Users can make such a change for their individual sessions"

or similar?


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