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Plain Language Writing Contest

Don Mansfield

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I invite you to participate in a plain language writing contest. To participate, re-write the passage below in plain language and post your entry in the comments section below. Here is the passage:

Quote

If an emergency or unanticipated event interrupts normal Government processes so that proposals cannot be received at the office designated for receipt of proposals by the exact time specified in the solicitation, and urgent Government requirements preclude amendment of the solicitation, the time specified for receipt of proposals will be deemed to be extended to the same time of day specified in the solicitation on the first work day on which normal Government processes resume.

You may submit more than one entry. I will score your entry for readability using the Dale-Chall Readability Formula

Your entry must communicate the essential information in the passage to be acceptable. The acceptable entry with the lowest adjusted readability score will be the winner. I will send the author of the winning entry a copy of The Write Way: The S.P.E.L.L. Guide to Real-Life Writing by Richard Lederer and Richard Dowis.

I will also give an award for the most humorous entry. I will send the author of the most humorous entry a copy of The Play of Words: Fun & Games for Language Lovers by Richard Lederer.

The deadline for receipt of entries is December 27 at 4:30 pm Pacific Standard Time. If an emergency or unanticipated event interrupts normal Wifcon processes so that entries cannot be received on the Web site designated for receipt of entries by the exact time specified in the invitation, and urgent requirements preclude amendment of the invitation, the time specified for receipt of entries will be deemed to be extended to the same time of day specified in the invitation on the first work day on which normal Wifcon processes resume.

Enjoy.



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I like your paragraph allowing for an extended deadline for emergency or unanticipated events.

I suppose your working assumption is that the text can be improved?

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1 hour ago, ji20874 said:

I like your paragraph allowing for an extended deadline for emergency or unanticipated events.

I suppose your working assumption is that the text can be improved?

I took the paragraph from FAR 52.215-1( c )(3)(iv). My assumption is that the text can be made more readable. The Dale-Chall Readability adjusted score is 11.1. That corresponds to "Grades 16 and Above (College Graduate)", which is the highest level on the scale.

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If emergencies or unforeseen events interrupt normal receipt of offers by the exact time specified, and time-sensitive factors prevent the Government from changing the specified time, offers are due at the same time on the first work day that normal Government operations return.

-or-

If an emergency or unforeseen event interrupts normal receipt of offers by the office and exact time specified, and prevents change of the time, offers are due at the same time on the first work day that normal Government operations return.

-or-

If events beyond the government's reasonable control interrupt normal receipt of offers, and prevent change of the exact due date or time, offers are due at the same time on the first work day that normal government operations return.

-or-

If the Government's normal receipt of offers is interrupted by an emergency or unforeseen event, the offer due date is postponed to the first work day that normal Government operations return.

-or-

If normal Government receipt of offers is interrupted by an emergency or unforeseen event, the offer due date is changed to the first work day that normal Government operations return.

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If the designated office can't receive proposals at the time specified, and time does not permit an amendment to the solicitation, proposals will be due at the same time on the next Government work day.

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If we can’t receive your proposal on the due date - for pretty much any reason (including zombie apocalypse, being kidnapped by aliens, there was a long line at Starbucks, etc.), and we forget (or decide it’s not important enough) to extend the due date, you can assume that it’s been extended until the next day we come to work – whenever that is.  Good luck!

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When the Government can’t receive an offer and can’t change the due date because the need is important the due date will be the first day the Government can receive the offer at the same time of day.

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If the receipt of proposals is prevented by unforeseen circumstances, then the Government will receive proposals at the same time on the first day of normal operations unless the solicitation is formally extended.

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Life.  Wow, man, Life. 

It's really strange you know?  We make these plans to receive your proposals and then Life happens and we can't.  We can't even issue an amendment to our solicitation!   Could be plague, could be invasion, could be we just totally flaked out that day. 

But chill.  We'll take it when we get back.  We won't trip about Life.  Cuz. Life.  Trips. Us. Man.  All of us. 

Can you pass that stuff over here?

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15 minutes ago, apsofacto said:

Life.  Wow, man, Life. 

It's really strange you know?  We make these plans to receive your proposals and then Life happens and we can't.  We can't even issue an amendment to our solicitation!   Could be plague, could be invasion, could be we just totally flaked out that day. 

But chill.  We'll take it when we get back.  We won't trip about Life.  Cuz. Life.  Trips. Us. Man.  All of us. 

Can you pass that stuff over here?

😂Someone just took the lead in the humor category.

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Marty Mcfly and Doc Brown were expecting proposals on Saturday October 26th 1985 at 5:00pm.  On Saturday 1:35am, October 26th 1985 while Doc is showing his friend Marty a time machine experiment at the Hill Valley Mall parking lot, an unanticipated car chase happens (a confrontation with the Libyans) and Marty accidently travels back in time.  After multiple time travel destinations and twisted time altering events, Marty and Doc finally get the time continuum back in order.  Marty and Doc meet at 11am on the train tracks in Hill Valley on Sunday October 27th 1985 at 11:00am.   All the vendors knew that since Marty and Doc were non-existent and couldn't advise them of the proposal extension, they could submit their proposals when Marty and Doc got "Back to the Future".

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On 12/16/2018 at 11:53 AM, lotus said:

Submit any time you choose.  We already know who the awardee will be.

too funny and, perfectly concise.

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