Writing for Business - A Whatis.com Blog

Sep 22 2009   1:30PM GMT

If a deadline’s moved forward is it earlier or later?

Ivy Wigmore Ivy Wigmore Profile: Ivy Wigmore

Which is correct?
The compliance deadline has been moved forward, so all reporting is due two months _____ than the original date.
a. later
b. earlier

Answer: b

Explanation:
If something is moving towards you — like a deadline — moving it forward will make it closer to you and moving it back will move it farther away.

The Grammarphobia blog, by the authors of Woe is I, has a nice response to this question.

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