Should quotation marks be used where a quote has been deliberately changed to mean something slightly different?

I’m writing a blog post where I present a direct quote, then present a quote slightly altered to deliberately change what the initial quote means. I am presenting the slightly altered quote as an example of how the feel of a news might change but the facts stay the same, if read ignoring gender where possible. Below is an extract from the blog post where i give the example.

I would suggest reading either article with a twist – whenever you
see a job position qualified by the predominant gender of workers in
that role, ignore the gendered qualifier. For example, from the BBC’s

“Lawyers say hourly-paid female store staff earn less than men even
though the value of the work is comparable.”

Would become…

“Lawyers say hourly-paid store staff earn less than warehouse staff
even though the value of the work is comparable.”

How should the second ‘quote’ be presented now it does not entirely reflect the source article, but is still mostly sourced from the article?


Quotation marks are used to enclose not only quotations from real sources (i.e. the words that somebody has actually said or written somewhere else), but also ‘quotations’ from imaginary ‘sources’, such as the words ‘spoken’ by an imaginary character, or the words that are given as examples of something that somebody (who needn’t be specified) could say. This last way of using them can be seen throughout this site.

The second sentence that appears in quotation marks in the OP’s example is an instance of that, perfectly correct, use of quotation marks. The OP is, in that example, merely inviting his readers to think about that sentence, while making it clear that no actual source is being quoted. It is immaterial to the correctness of this use of quotation marks that the sentence is formed by modifying the actual quotation that precedes it. Of course when one does something like what OP is doing here, it is very important that the context make it clear which quotations are actual and which are the modifications; in OP’s example that is clear.

Source : Link , Question Author : Ned Grady , Answer Author : jsw29

Leave a Comment