Date: Fri, 19 Jun 1998 11:41:18 -0500
From: Mark Mandel
Subject: seeking a verb for what a consultant does

In my work, I frequently serve as a short-term consultant to people in
various parts of the company: answering short questions, attending a
meeting to give input on a single issue, etc. In my biweekly reports I have
been describing this kind of activity in terms like

I consulted for Hugh on the XYZ issue

which I find unsatisfactory. The problem is that while I dislike the passive
voice, and I certainly don't want to fill my reports with it, "consult" takes
the consultant (the person who provides expertise) as direct object, and
I can't think of any construction or expression, EXCEPT the passive, that
fits into the pattern:

I attended meeting X
I collected data of type Y
I ran experiment Z

Suggestions, anyone? They don't have to use the root "consult". I've tried
"advise", but it doesn't always fit semantically.

Mark A. Mandel : Senior Linguist : mark[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]
Dragon Systems, Inc. : speech recognition : +1 617 796-0267
320 Nevada St., Newton, MA 02160, USA :
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