This short post is about ways we can present examples in English. In Hong Kong English, users often use the word 'including' to present examples in a way that is incorrect.
The following two sentences are examples of a common way of writing in Hong Kong:
 *There are three factors that can inhibit good communication, including poor listening skills, language barriers, and timing barriers.
 * Two staff members in this division were recently promoted, including Jonathan Yu and Elaine Wong.
In both of these sentences, the word 'including' has been used to introduce a complete list. In other words, the list that follows the comma in each example contains ALL the examples mentioned generally in the first half of the sentence. Sentence  mentions three factors, and then includes three items after 'including'. Sentence  mentions two staff members, and then list two names after 'including'. In both cases, you can see that the writer has treated the word 'including' as though it is introducing ALL examples of what has just been mentioned.
In standard English, this is not how 'including' is used. Instead, the word ‘including’ is normally used to introduce members from a larger group, giving readers a flavour of the group membership by offering selected examples. In other words, ‘including’ gives partial but not exhaustive examples of things in a list.
 There are three factors that can inhibit good communication, including language barriers and timing barriers.
 Two staff members in this division were recently promoted, including Jonathan Yu.
What if you want to cite all the examples on your list? There are a couple of different ways of doing this in English. Perhaps the most common one is to introduce the list with the word 'namely’.
 Two staff members in this division were recently promoted, namely Jonathan Yu and Elaine Wong.
 Three beaches remain closed due to high levels of pollution, namely Anglers Beach, Trio Beach and Gemini Beach.
Frequently, all examples in a list are introduced simply by placing a colon after the first half of the sentence, like this:
 Two staff members in this division were recently promoted: Jonathan Yu and Elaine Wong.
This last usage, though common in standard English, has been slow to take hold in Hong Kong.
About this blog
This blog arises from keeping an eye on English in Hong Kong. I often use signs, notices and advertisements that I see as starting points to write about English issues that commonly challenge Hong Kong writers.