Should I use a semicolon or comma in this sentence?

Identity theft not only can be helpful to the thieves, it can also be harmful to you.

12 Answers

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  • Edna
    Lv 7
    7 months ago

    You would use a semi-colon. Independent clauses (two or more complete sentences that contain a subject and a verb - a complete "stand-alone" sentence) that are not joined by a conjunction (and, but, etc.) between them are to be set off by a semi-colon. What you have in your example are two independent clauses.

  • 7 months ago

    When you use the term "not only," you are also supposed to use the term "but also." Of course, this rule isn't always followed, but without the "but also" in there, it borders on comma splicing since the clause lacks a coordinating conjunction:

    Not only can identity theft be helpful to thieves, but also it can be harmful to you.

  • Anonymous
    7 months ago

    What you have written is awkwardly worded.

    Not only can identity theft be helpful to thieves, but it can also be harmful to you.

  • geezer
    Lv 7
    7 months ago

    A comma, because you are continuing with the same thought.

    • Yes, but she would have to use a coordinating conjunction then like "but" to avoid a comma splice.

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  • 7 months ago

    You can use a comma or a dash in the sentence. If you use a dash, put the dash between "thieves" and "it".

    You could rewrite the sentence. Identity theft can be helpful to thieves, but harmful to you.

    Identity theft can be helpful to the person who stole your identity, but harmful to you.

  • 7 months ago

    Comma. The semi-colon is sued to separate two related but independent thoughts. In your example, use of 'not only' requires that something additional must follow, so it is one complete thought, stated in two phrases necessitating the comma.

    Here's an example where you would use a semi-colon.

    Great success breeds contempt; the numbers of New York Yankees and Golden State Warriors-haters illustrates this.

  • 7 months ago

    A comma is the better choice, and you might find it helpful if you were to use 'only' correctly. Your sentence should be written like this:

    Identity theft can not only be helpful to the thieves, it can also be harmful to you.

  • Stacie
    Lv 4
    7 months ago

    It's a comma.

    Besides the comma, the sentence structure looks like it could be written better.

    I would rewrite it to read as per the below:

    Identity theft is not only helpful to thieves, but can also be harmful to you.

    But, if you really want to use the "can" you could also write it this way:

    Identity theft can not only be helpful to thieves, but can also be harmful to you.

    Hope that helps.

  • Tantra
    Lv 4
    7 months ago

    Comma

  • 7 months ago

    Ooo I’m not sure actually. I think it’s a comma but I’m not sure why

    • Discrete7 months agoReport

      Your gut is right, but still got to down vote.

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