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Old 07.10.2015, 15:41
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Re: Since vs for

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Haha, that reminds me; the number of times I've heard "reviewen", "geupdated", and "geuploaded" amongst various other Denglish expressions from Swiss colleagues .


It's sounds horrible to my ears but I guess the English language absorbed many Frenchs words in a similar way a thousand years ago during the Norman invasion. I'm sure it sounded pretty atrocious as well at the time.
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Old 07.10.2015, 15:47
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Haha, that reminds me; the number of times I've heard "reviewen", "geupdated", and "geuploaded" amongst various other Denglish expressions from Swiss colleagues .
Interesting, I would say naturally upgeloadet like aufgeladen.

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Old 07.10.2015, 15:55
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NationalitIES - Plural. Thank you..
I only check profiles, not all posts, to find nationality and native tongue. Your profile wasn't visible to me. Anyway, the only relevance is 'has the guy a British sense of humour?'
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Old 07.10.2015, 16:15
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Re: Since vs for

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Part of my job entails proof-reading and polishing English technical and scientific documents written by non-native speakers. One of the common mistakes is the inappropriate use of "the". The thing is, I can't even tell people why they can use it in some instances, but not in others; it just looks "wrong".
I occasionally find myself doing this type of thing with reports from a wide variety of non-native English speakers. It seems there are many languages (Slavic, South Asian that spring to mind) where there are no articles. So people 'know' that they should use them, so they seem to use them at random or they put one in even when not required. Trying to explain why they're wrong is really tricky.

I've also noticed in the last ten or fifteen years or so, native English speakers getting it wrong (or perhaps I am - maybe the rules have shifted - please help). People (including politicians and journalists) say "government should do something" when I think they mean "the government should do something". My understanding is that the former means that it is governments', in general, duty to do something, whereas the latter means that this particular government should do something.

Mind you, you'd usually say "parliament should do something" not "the parliament...". Oh my brain hurts.
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  #45  
Old 07.10.2015, 16:52
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Interesting, I would say naturally upgeloadet like aufgeladen.
Duden spells it "hochgeladen".
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Old 07.10.2015, 18:01
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Re: Since vs for

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in my opinion language (or use of it) shouldn't be over simplified. Expressing yours thoughts in exact or innovative way is beautiful and challenging.
Very true. I feel the same about German, my primary langauge.

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This is something I don't like with Schwyzerdütsch,, that they don't want to change it into a full language, with rules to break.
However, this could not be more wrong ... and is, in fact, chauvinistically ignorant. I assume you do not know a lot about it, apart from that you do not speak it. And I did not know that we have to make a decision!?

Not because I am one of them using it as a full-fledged language ... also to express most complex things and philosophical thoughts, for example. ... LOL, there even was once somebody seriously claiming that you cannot express scientific thoughts in a colloquial langauge. He even assumed that you cannot think in Swiss German while studying at the ETH
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Old 07.10.2015, 18:08
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Re: Since vs for

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Interesting, I would say naturally upgeloadet like aufgeladen.
The more proficient German speaker would probably say upgedated, if at all, the less educated would possibly rather say geupdated, however. This distinction you can even make among native German speakers.

Somebody's proficency is easily derived from his/her language usage. For(?) centuries!
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  #48  
Old 07.10.2015, 18:33
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Re: Since vs for

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Then, of course, there's the inapproprate use of the present continuous in English -- which is odd, since it doesn't exist as a separate life form in German. Maybe in some way this is related to the use of "until"...
I cannot think of any reasonable explanation for the moment. I guess we are like kids in a candy shop and whenever we vaguely sense a process that requires duration we just take the chance and use it. It feels more complete. or stronger than the banal present tense...
...or something.
I usually try to be more accurate when writing official texts, in all fairness my EF English is not the best I can. Hope you native speakers will excuse our peculiarities.
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Old 07.10.2015, 19:52
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I cannot think of any reasonable explanation for the moment. I guess we are like kids in a candy shop and whenever we vaguely sense a process that requires duration we just take the chance and use it. It feels more complete. or stronger than the banal present tense...
...or something.
I usually try to be more accurate when writing official texts, in all fairness my EF English is not the best I can. Hope you native speakers will excuse our peculiarities.
Nah, no excuses required. We all know that most of "you" (non-native-English-speakers) speak more languages more competently than "we" can, and in many cases, speak English more correctly than what many of us do.

As far as the English present continuous is concerned, it's not required all that often. Next time you want to express something in the present tense, think "is it happening RIGHT NOW (and wasn't until just recently)"? If not, then present continuous probably won't work. For example, "I am working on your report and it'll be ready in an hour" is good English; "I am working on your report for the last three days" is not. (And of course, I'm working on your report since the last three days is even worse.)

An exception is the use of the present continuous to express an event in the near future, e.g. "I'm going home tomorrow". This is similar to the German use of the present to express the future, "Morgen gehe ich nach Hause". In English you could also say "I'm going to go home tomorrow", just to complicate things further.
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Old 07.10.2015, 20:16
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Re: Since vs for

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The more proficient German speaker would probably say upgedated, if at all, the less educated would possibly rather say geupdated, however. This distinction you can even make among native German speakers.

Somebody's proficency is easily derived from his/her language usage. For(?) centuries!
Probably, I do admit that one hears geupdatet too. It's a bit insecure ground, I suppose. I tend to prefer Update durchgeführt to avoid the problem.

I only said upgeloadet in analogy to aufgeladen because of the form of the word (up/auf+stem), not the meaning. Indeed the correct German word for it is hochladen/hochgeladen. If find quite normal in language use that there are some doublons English/German, the conjugation problem is however sometimes tricky and not unanimously solved among native speakers.
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Old 09.10.2015, 16:41
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Re: Since vs for

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There's a few threads with common word use which would be considered grammatically incorrect in proper English (for almost all national versions of the language). I do find myself adopting them, when I'm the only native speaker in a group of 12 expats who all seem to use the mistake---I'm not going to be the grammar-nati.

Some examples:

We are going to make party!
Can I borrow you my pen?
I invite you all for a coffee! (*not an invitation but an offer to pay for all)
The party on Saturday was very funny! (*fun)

I'll add as I think of more.
Why? Why do you deny the other folk the opportunity to improve their english?
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  #52  
Old 09.10.2015, 17:21
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Re: Since vs for

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Why? Why do you deny the other folk the opportunity to improve their english?
It can be tricky, but I've always been one for correcting things where appropriate, and often if it happens a couple of times with one individual or a group would specifically ask if they'd like to be corrected or not. I've never had anyone say no, but I think it's polite to check out their openness to positive feedback.

Another couple of common mistakes that have probably been mentioned before include:

Actual - In English it means real, or genuine, rather than 'at the present time' as used in French, German and Italian.

Control - in English it's only used when there's a feedback loop involved. If I'm controlling the heating it means that I check the temperature and then make adjustments to the thermostat or other controls if appropriate. Controlling a car means driving it. So for passports, ID cards, MFK tests, etc. the word to use instead is 'check' or in some situations like the MFK, 'test'.

Another time-related one also springs to mind, seen sometimes on ski lifts 'it is forbidden to use the lift as long as the personnel is absent'. A simple 'if' is all that's needed, which also brings up the wenn/when misuse. 'As long as' can mean a continuous activity, e.g. "as long as you're still standing upright you can carry on drinking" or a simple condition, e.g. "you can come in here as long as you take your shoes off".
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Old 09.10.2015, 17:39
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Re: Since vs for

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Control - in English it's only used when there's a feedback loop involved. If I'm controlling the heating it means that I check the temperature and then make adjustments to the thermostat or other controls if appropriate. Controlling a car means driving it. So for passports, ID cards, MFK tests, etc. the word to use instead is 'check' or in some situations like the MFK, 'test'.


"Passport control" or "border control" are frequently used terms. I don't think they are wrong and you find them in dictionaries as well.

Last edited by Ace1; 10.10.2015 at 01:15. Reason: Fixed quoting
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Old 10.10.2015, 00:31
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Re: Since vs for

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"Passport control" or "border control" are frequently used terms. I don't think they are wrong and you find them in dictionaries as well.
They are frequently used terms, but they may not mean what you think they mean. I'm not sure a feedback loop is required, though the technical field of Control Theory is full of them. What I think is required is a continuous process in which you regulate or otherwise constrain something.

Border control means regulating who comes and goes through a country's borders. The man who searches your bags is a very small part of this overall process.

Similarly, there is a desk labeled passport control at the airport and in a sense they could be said to control the flow of passports that go past. But in an English speaking country you will not hear the agent ask to control your passport.
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Old 10.10.2015, 01:14
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Re: Since vs for

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"Passport control" or "border control" are frequently used terms. I don't think they are wrong and you find them in dictionaries as well.
Yes, and?

It's not the passport that's being controlled. No, the passport is checked as part of the process of controlling who is allowed to cross. Controlling the border crossing implies an action as a result of the document check.
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Old 10.10.2015, 13:02
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Re: Since vs for

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Actual - In English it means real, or genuine, rather than 'at the present time' as used in French, German and Italian.
In four years of being here and proof-reading colleagues English, I only noticed the use of actual for contempory this this week. Things like this always make me worried that I've been missing major errors all these years.

I often have to change to perfect from preteritum in formal writen work, and find it odd that perfect is seen as informal and preteritum as formal, as it's the opposite in English. I also find deleting and adding 'the' a fun past-time. Of course, the worst time to ask me to help is after my German lessons. So much gets overlooked.

I also had a misunderstanding for years about the language of the requests for proof-reading. I would always be asked 'can you do this quickly' which I read as 'this needs to be done in a short space of time' rather than 'when you have a spare five minutes'.
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Old 10.10.2015, 13:09
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Re: Since vs for

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I often have to change to perfect from preteritum...
The what now?

<Googles>

Oh. Well that's another mistake - in English it's called the imperfect tense.

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.

I also had a misunderstanding for years about the language of the requests for proof-reading. I would always be asked 'can you do this quickly' which I read as 'this needs to be done in a short space of time' rather than 'when you have a spare five minutes'.
Not helped, this sort of thing, by common misuses in some of these terms - I've even heard "We'll be with you momentarily" on voice menu systems of large (American) companies. And in case anyone's confused, momentarily means "for a short space of time" whereas this common misuse is intended to mean "after a short delay", or just "in a moment".

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Old 10.10.2015, 13:17
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Re: Since vs for

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Oh. Well that's another mistake - in English is called the imperfect tense.
The vocabulary used in grammar is often different for native speaker teaching and foreign language and from country to country. It's usually historical.
In German, even the order of cases is different.
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Old 10.10.2015, 13:22
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Re: Since vs for

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In four years of being here and proof-reading colleagues English. . ..
And I've done a bit of proof-reading myself . . .

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In four years of being here and proof-reading colleagues English, I only noticed the use of actual for contempory this this week. Things like this always make me worried that I've been missing major errors all these years.

I often have to change to perfect from preteritum in formal writen work, and find it odd that perfect is seen as informal and preteritum as formal, as it's the opposite in English. I also find deleting and adding 'the' a fun past-time. Of course, the worst time to ask me to help is after my German lessons. So much gets overlooked.

I also had a misunderstanding for years about the language of the requests for proof-reading. I would always be asked 'can you do this quickly' which I read as 'this needs to be done in a short space of time' rather than 'when you have a spare five minutes'.
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Old 10.10.2015, 13:26
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Re: Since vs for

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Not helped, this sort of thing, by common misuses in some of these terms - I've even heard "We'll be with you momentarily" voice menu systems of large American components.
My favourite is the phrase "Könntest Du schnell warten?" "Can you wait quickly?" Typical of Switzerland that you are even expected to 'wait quickly' and be 'over-punctual'
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