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I realized today I have been on a jihad spiritual struggle within oneself against sin against the word "Indicate" for a few years now.  I saw the Environmental Protection Agency Acquisition Regulation (EPAAR) Clause Update for Submission of Invoices federal register entry on the Main Page and started compulsively trying to rewrite this section:

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(e) Period of performance indication. Invoices or requests for contract financing payment must clearly indicate the period of performance for which payment is requested. Separate invoices or requests for contract financing payment are required for charges applicable to the base contract and each option period.

According to the linked Merriam-Webster definition, "Indicate" has a few meanings, some mean to "to state", and others are more advisory or suggestive.  So whenever I see the word, I wonder for a fraction of a second which version the author means. 

The passage says "clearly indicate" which surely helps.  Why not just say "state" or "describe"?  Won't this version always be better?:

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(e) Period of performance indication. Invoices or requests for contract financing payment must clearly indicate state the period of performance of the work for which payment is requested. Separate invoices or requests for contract financing payment are required for charges applicable to the base contract and each option period.

(Also cut "clearly", and added "of the work" because we pay folks for work, not for period of performance)

Question is: should "Indicate" be vindicated, or annihilated?

We know by now that I have some issues.  I'm getting old, and crusty.  Set in mah' ways.  Resisting the urge to change the passive voice in the second sentence! So I appreciate your feedback, I may need to be yanked out of this rut I'm in.  Or perhaps we can destroy this scourge that plagues us.  If this devolves into a contest to rewrite that clause section that's OK too, that would be fun.

Edited by apsofacto
Made one edit to the first paragraph on advice of counsel.
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Guest PepeTheFrog

PepeTheFrog agrees with you. This is like using the word "utilize" instead of "use." Poor writing. Unnecessarily complicated. 

Isn't it funny that the Plain Writing Act (law passed to make the federal government write clearly, concisely, and simply) specifically exempted both legislation and regulations? PepeTheFrog seems to remember learning that hilarious fact. 

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