Question

Television programs developed in conjunction with the marketing of toys, which was once prohibited by federal regulations, are thriving in the free market conditions permitted by the current Federal Communications Commission.

Option A
Option B
Option C
Option D
Option E

(This question is from Official Guide. Therefore, because of copyrights, the complete question cannot be copied here. The question can be accessed at GMAT Club)

Solution

Sentence Analysis

  • Television programs (Main Subject)
      • developed in conjunction (Verb-ed modifier – modifies the main subject)
        • with the marketing of toys, (Prepositional phrase – modifies “conjunction”)
          • which was once prohibited by federal regulations, (Relative clause – modifies ‘marketing of toys’)
  • are thriving in the free market conditions (Main Verb – “are thriving”)
    • permitted by the current Federal Communications Commission. (Verb-ed modifier – modifies “conditions”)

The sentence says that certain television programs are thriving in free market conditions. Even though the sentence says that the marketing of toys was once prohibited, it seems, logically, that such programs were once prohibited by regulations.

The sentence has the following problems:

  1. The sentence says that the marketing of toys was once prohibited. Logically, it makes much more sense to say that such programs that are now thriving were once prohibited. Thus, it should have been “which were once prohibited” in place of “which was once prohibited”.
  2. Prohibiting a practice (developing programs in conjunction with the marketing of toys) makes more sense than prohibiting the final product (programs developed in conjunction with the marketing of toys)

Option Analysis

(A) Incorrect. For the reasons mentioned above.

(B) Incorrect. For the following reasons:

  1. The plural subject “programs” doesn’t agree with the singular verb “is thriving”.
  2. The Noun+Noun modifier “a practice…” modifies “the marketing of toys”, leading to the same error as the first error in the original sentence.

(C) Incorrect. For the following reasons:

  1. The use of “as” is incorrect. The correct construction would be “once prohibited by federal regulations”.
  2. The option says that developing television programs is thriving. Either we should say that television programs are thriving or we should say that the practice of developing television programs is thriving.

(D) Incorrect. “they”, being the subject of a clause, refers to the subject of the preceding clause i.e. “regulations” in this case. Thus, the option means that the regulations are thriving. Clearly, an illogical meaning.

(E) Correct

This solution was created by Anish Passi and Chiranjeev Singh.

If you have any doubts regarding any part of this solution, please feel free to ask in the comments section.

  • DC123123 says:

    Hi, could the meaning not inferred as the one suggested in option B, i.e. the practice of television programs developed in conjunction with the marketing of toys is prohibited…

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