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That or Who?

People _____ are vegetarians are awesome runners. (For the sake of the example, overlook for a moment the fact that we could make this sentence more concise by saying “vegetarians are awesome runners.” See the tip on less is more.) What would you fill in here? Who or That? Here, you should use “who” because you are referring to people. “That” is not per se incorrect, but I think it’s a good rule to keep who for people and persons. How about this one: My husband is someone _____ excels at thinking up annoying moves, and then naming them. In this case, who is the only choice. That is simply wrong here. Use that for inanimate objects. For example, I want a dress that compliments my figure. Following that rule (who for people and persons, that for inanimate objects), you should not use who and whom when referring to agencies, companies, organizations or other bodies. For example: ‘Preissl Sweeper Services is a company that employs a lovely sweeper boy who goes by the name Pete.”

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