“affect” vs. “effect”

A regular reader of my blog, Bananaz, asked me to blog about the difference between “affect” and “effect“.  I’ve heard politicians pronounce the words wrongly; they’re not interchangeable.

  • affect (v.) – to influence or cause something to change
  • effect (n.)* – the result of a particular action or event


(a) affect

  1. The flu has affected my concentration at work.
  2. Your annual performance affects your salary.
  3. People are not bothered that open burning affects the ozone layer.
  4. Heavy showers last night affected visibility on the highway.

(b) effect

  1. The medicine I took had no effect on me. I’m still sick.
  2. Despite knowing the effects of smoking, people still smoke.
  3. The government’s campaign to curb crime has not much effect.
  4. What are the effects of petrol price hike?

* NOTE: Effect” could also be a verb, but that’s not the focus in this post.