Enter the Lists

By Cyberquill 05/04/20125 Comments

This line, which I’ve circled in red, on one of Twitter’s dropdown menus has been confounding me for some time now.

How exactly is one supposed to add someone from a list?

How about subtracting operating expenses to total revenue? Ever heard of limpet mines attaching from the hull of a ship?

Assuming, on the other hand, the “from” does not go with the “add,” the sentence means “Add lists or remove from lists,” a non sequitur of sorts.

Or the “add” might just sit there in the altogether, logically detached from what follows: you can either add (random numbers in your head or butter to your cake mix), or you can remove someone from your lists—an even bigger non sequitur.

And what’s up with the suspension points as if the invitation to add or remove were the teaser blurb on the dust jacket of a mystery novel?

I suppose the dot-dot-dot indicates that, in addition to giving us the option to add or remove, clicking on the instruction will also present us with an option to create lists. But instead of the dopey dots, why not simply say “Add, create, or remove from lists.” We’re already in preposition mayhem anyway, so what’s the difference? If you can add something from a list, you might as well be able to create something from a list, as God created Eve from one of Adam’s ribs.

And yes, I’m stuck on and obsessed with Lindsey Vonn.

But neither am I “obsessed and stuck on” Lindsey Vonn, nor am I “stuck and obsessed with” Lindsey Vonn. (I wish I were stuck with her, as in a hotel room or an elevator.)

I am stuck on and obsessed with Lindsey Vonn.

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  • Richard

    You have to add from another list.

    I think you’ll find it works then.

    Let me know if you have any more technical problems.

    • http://blog.cyberquill.com/ Cyberquill

      Of course it doesn’t work then either, counselor. 

      Clicking on “Add or remove from lists…” takes you to a list of all the lists you’ve created, and next to each list there’s a box. Put a check mark in the box, you’ve added the person to the corresponding list. Remove the check mark from the box, you’ve removed the person from that list. 

      If you haven’t created any lists yet, then there’s a “Create a list” button. Once you’ve created a list, you click the box to add the person to the list. 

      In order to add a person to a list by placing a check mark in the box, you don’t need to add that person from anywhere as if performing a transfer of some sort. You just put the check mark in the box, and that’s it. 

      Let me know if you have any more technical problems regarding italics. (I fixed them for you.)

    • Richard

      Of course I’m grateful. That’s what you want isn’t it? I’ll even hang up a sign to prove it.

      I do not subscribe to Twitter, but if I did I would compile a list from a pre-existing list.

      This is why I do not subscribe to Twitter. It always takes more than forty characters to explain things to you.

      If you follow my advice carefully, you will find that it works. As I say, am happy to remain on call for technical assistance.

      • http://blog.cyberquill.com/ Cyberquill

        Twitter lists are non-zero-sum.

        • Richard

          When I entered the jousting lists it was every man for himself.

          Aah! Those were the days.

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