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Sunday, January 24, 2016

Not Incorrect

Yes doesn't always mean correct in English

23 comments:

  1. If you want clear answers, ask clear questions.

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    Replies
    1. But didn't you for sure all the way and then around perhaps not to for had been doing?

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  2. What we need are four separate answers: two for positive questions, two for negative ones.

    Though three would be a step up already, with an explicit "yes I did" style for negative "you didn't ..., right?" - as in German "doch", French "si", Swedish "jo" (IIRC).

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    Replies
    1. We had that. Yea and nay for positively framed questions and yes and no for negatively. Then we lost them along the way...

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  3. You haven't seen my phone?
    English: Yes, I have. or No, I haven't.
    French: Si = I have. Non = I have not.
    German: Doch = I have. Nein = I have not.
    Russian: Nyet = I have. Da = I have not.
    Japanese: Iie = I have. Hai = I have not.
    Inuit: Naamik = I have. Aap = I have not.

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    Replies
    1. "You haven't seen my phone?"
      Québec French: Oui = I have. Non = I haven't.
      African French: Non = I have. Oui = I haven't.

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    2. Easier in Celtic :)

      "You haven't seen my phone?"
      Have. = I have. Haven't. = I haven't.

      There is no "yes" or "no"; instead, the verb is repeated in either positive or negative form.

      For example, Cornish:
      A ny wruss'ta gweles ow klappkodh?
      (Q not you-did you see my mobile-phone?)

      - Ny wrug. / Gwrug.
      (not I-did / I-did)

      Or without the helper verb:

      A ny welsys ta ow klappkodh?
      (Q now you-saw you my mobile-phone)

      - Ny welis. / Gwelis.
      (not I-saw / I-saw)

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    3. Oops, the answers should be "Na wrug/welis" rather than "Ny wrug/welis".

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    4. Wrong in russian
      You haven't seen my phone?
      Nyet = I have not. Da = I have.

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    5. Still wrong.
      You haven't seen my phone?
      Nyet = I have not. Da = I have not.

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    6. I thought nyet was the opposite of da. Anyway, I learned about the Russian, Japanese, and Inuit words for yes and no from a book titled "Parlons Allemand, Langue et culture d'un pays voisin." It shows how ja = oui, doch = si, and nein = non, and says that French and German have 3-term systems.

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    7. Irish: An bhfaca tú Doireann inné? Chonaic./ Ní fhaca.
      According to Teach Yourself Irish Grammar.

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    8. I settled the Russian answers with a native: https://www.reddit.com/r/duolingo/comments/43aigh/itchy_feet_not_incorrect_what_do_da_and_nyet_mean/

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    9. Like Alsterwasser said. Because if you say "Da", you will receive next answer
      "'Yes, I have' or 'Yes, I have not'?". Yea, russian is so weird sometimes.

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  4. I didn't not see your phone, don't you see?

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  5. (Husband: fluent in English. Me: not so much)

    H: does it bother you if I turn on the radio?
    Me: no.
    H: OK, I won't turn it on, then.
    Me:???

    Happens on a regular basis.

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    Replies
    1. But, in this case your husband asked a positive question, so No=it doesn't bother me.

      I don't understand him, but I'm not a native English speaker anyway.

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    2. When someone asks "does it bother you if...", no (as you answered) means you don't care if they do it, and yes means you don't want them to do it. I'm a native speaker and I don't get him either.

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    3. Your English appears to be better than his. O.o;;

      But then, a lot of fluent English speakers don't seem to know what the phrase "do you mind" means anymore. The question itself is sort of backwards, but for instance, "do you mind if I turn on the radio?" can be answered with something like, "yes, that's fine" (and often with just "yes" in the right conversational tone). Technically, you've just said "no, please don't turn on the radio" but context changes the answer to "yes." When someone asks me that kind of question, at this point I try to avoid yes/no completely and just go with something like, "go ahead" or "please don't."

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    4. Yes, I know I'm the one who's grammatically correct here; but my husband seems to consider this kind of formulation as strictly equivalent to "can I turn on the radio?". So he gets thrown off by my negative answer, and I get thrown off by his reaction to it.

      Not even getting into the ongoing debate we have about the meaning of "next day-of-the-week". To me, "next Sunday" means "the first Sunday after today". To him, it means "Sunday of next week". I know I am technically correct, but then everyone here uses the word "next" exactly like my husband, so...

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    5. On the next day-of-the-week issue, I agree with your husband. People often say things like, "Not this Wednesday, next Wednesday." This Wednesday is the Wednesday coming up, and next Wednesday is the next one after that.

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  6. The Chinese way to answer the question:
    Yes = Have seen. 看见了
    No = Not have sen. 没看见
    Less yes/no and more repetition makes clearer answers.

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