General Writing and Grammar Help/Now & by now

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Question
Dear Ted:

What is the difference between "now" and "by now"?

Would you please give me some examples?

Also, are there any cases in which the two can be interchanged?

If so, when?

Could you please give me a few examples?

Many, many thanks for your kind help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

What is the difference between "now" and "by now"?

Would you please give me some examples?

Also, are there any cases in which the two can be interchanged?

*** They are different, and their difference is about "time."  NOW means at this moment.
BY NOW suggests that something began in the past and should be finished at this moment.

I want my food, and I want it NOW.

I should have had my food BY NOW, but my waitress is very slow.

BY NOW, all the members should have voted on the issue.

While we are all assembled, we should vote on the issue NOW.

Ted

P. S.  I advise against interchanging them.

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Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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