I feel like starting a campaign for the underprivileged, for the downtrodden, for the underutilized. I want to start a movement. There is a word in the English language that needs our support. And that word is “fewer”.
Somehow, the word “less” has taken over. I hear statements all the time, such as:
- He received 200,000 less votes than the winner of the election.
- Matt Ryan has thrown less interceptions this year.
- I have less children than you do.
According to Oxford Dictionary,
People these days are buying fewer newspapers.
Fewer students are opting to study science-related subjects.
Fewer than thirty children each year develop the disease.
Use less when you’re referring to something that can’t be counted or doesn’t have a plural (e.g. money, air, time, music, rain). For example:
It’s a better job but they pay you less money.
People want to spend less time in traffic jams.
Ironically, when I’m on tour, I listen to less music.
I wonder why less is used more. And we generally don’t make the mistake in the other direction. Have you ever heard someone say:
- I have fewer money that he does.
- I have fewer time to finish the project.
- The I exercise, the fewer stress I feel.
I don’t understand why we discriminate against fewer. It’s a nice word, it never harmed anyone. Please join my campaign to support fewer. The more the better.