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  #41  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:21
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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Mobbing, in the sense of work place bullying, is not an English word. (False friend).
Actually it is an English word. It just has a slightly different meaning from that intended by German speakers. Crows harassing a bird of prey is an example of the correct use of mobbing.
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  #42  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:21
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

I am surprized nobody quoted my many mistakes in English... check my messages, that should keep you untertained a while (eine Weile).

One thing we non-native English trying-to-speakers gave up totally is the distinction preterit/perfect tense. Let's face it: when done right, it's just an accident.
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  #43  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:28
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

I'm not going to add anything to this thread other than, as a native English speaker, I cringe when I look at some of my previous posts.
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  #44  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:29
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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Actually, my hubby gets smell and taste mixed up quite often, I blame the use of "aroma" to describe flavor as well as scent. The flavoring set I got around the holidays last year is labeled "Back-aroma"... in English "aroma" is always used to describe scent.

I used to tease him a bit when he'd come to visit and would comment on how he likes the way my shampoo "tastes"... I often had coconut or strawberry scented shampoo.
Swiss dialects use the word schmecken to mean both "to taste" and "to smell". Hence the confusion. The written language has the word riechen, which however means stink in the dialects.
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  #45  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:31
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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I'm not going to add anything to this thread other than, as a native English speaker, I cringe when I look at some of my previous posts.
That's one REAL advantage of being a Mod though isn't it? Being able to edit ones own spelling mistakes. But I'm cringing because I wrote a PM to a member with 'right' instead of 'write' a few minutes ago and I can't edit that.
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  #46  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:37
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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Actually it is an English word. It just has a slightly different meaning from that intended by German speakers. Crows harassing a bird of prey is an example of the correct use of mobbing.
The complete explanation of mobbing
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mobbing
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  #47  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:46
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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This one is brought about by a literal translation from the German and is used mostly by asian groups (by the way, this could also be viewed as ancient English from them days):
Guess expert speakers are not immune either.
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  #48  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:49
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

A few that spring to mind from German speakers:

Course does not mean exchange rate.
A map is not a menu and a menu is not a card.
A watch is not a clock.
Not all buildings are houses.
Only a very slow writer would sign a contract till tomorrow.
I don't have any wardrobes in my kitchen.
You cannot cook water. I've tried and tried.
The expressions, "I come later," and, "I'll come later," should be carefully distinguished.
It's not a track; it's a platform. Oh and that's platform, not plateform or pletform by the way.
I don't have a chef. I wish I did, but I only have a boss just now.

And lots more that I can't remember.
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  #49  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:50
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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Guess expert speakers are not immune either.
The "the" is correct and the "them" is a deliberate colloquialism. Sorry!
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  #50  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:53
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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and 'I could of gone if I'd known' instead of 'I could have gone if I'd known'.
I think we'll start another Thread 'Native English Common Mistakes'!
Agreed. I hear that ALL the time from native speakers in my current location. How are non-natives supposed to get it right with that as a starting point? Also had a C-level colleague constantly referring to the "physical year" instead of the "fiscal year"...

The lend/borrow is a big one... I've heard that one from numerous native German AND native Spanish speakers.
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  #51  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:54
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

The swiss dont "take" photos. They make them. Or so my children tell me...over and over again...
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  #52  
Old 19.06.2010, 18:55
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

I have a rather business english and my slang knowledge is close to 0 but increasing thanks to EF.
What I find sometimes annoying is the mix between US and british english. Examples are words like color/colour or realise/realize. I have the impression that there is a kind of US spell checker when you post/reply to a message. Can we set it to UK english?
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  #53  
Old 19.06.2010, 19:04
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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The "the" is correct and the "them" is a deliberate colloquialism. Sorry!
I humbly submit that it is either "the German version" or "German". Non colloquial use of English suggests that names of languages and nationalities don't take the article unless referring to the population of the nation.
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  #54  
Old 19.06.2010, 19:15
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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I humbly submit that it is either "the German version" or "German". Non colloquial use of English suggests that names of languages and nationalities don't take the article unless referring to the population of the nation.
That's usually true, certainly. But I think you'll find that there is an exception when discussing translation. Certainly this is very common usage to talk about Pliny being translated from "the Latin" for example.
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  #55  
Old 19.06.2010, 19:16
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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Anyone who purports to be a fluent English speaker, who says, for example "Could of", should be shot through the lungs. Pour encourager les autres.
Written as "could of", I concur wholeheartedly; but maybe they are actually saying "could've", and you can't discern the different pronunciation? I.e. it's an example where written and phonetic forms of the language or dialect part company.

Ken whurram sain?
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  #56  
Old 19.06.2010, 19:17
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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I have a rather business english and my slang knowledge is close to 0 but increasing thanks to EF.
What I find sometimes annoying is the mix between US and british english. Examples are words like color/colour or realise/realize. I have the impression that there is a kind of US spell checker when you post/reply to a message. Can we set it to UK english?

No, thanks!

Mine is set to American English and I quite like it like that.


So far as native English speakers go, a big peeve of mine is when folks "axe" (instead of "ask") a question.

Writing has been something I've had to focus on previously as I tended to be a poor / phonetic speller... I too cringe when I go back and notice mistakes on my posts.


I still smile to think of my hubby complimenting the "taste" of my shampoo. I thought I knew "schmecken" is also used for both taste and smell (thank you Goldtop) but I wasn't sure I had it right.

One thing about German that I'm curious when it comes to translation is "unglaublich" as I've seen / heard it used for amazing, incredible, unbelievable etc etc... How are we supposed to know which was intended if we're translating German into English?

I *think* I have "comish" and "lustig" correct though... most of the time.
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Last edited by Peg A; 19.06.2010 at 19:19. Reason: see what I mean...
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  #57  
Old 19.06.2010, 19:19
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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I'm not a native speaker, and frankly I wish sometimes english people would be less lenient with my mistakes. They let it go because basically they understand what I mean but then, I don't make any progress...

But then again, being interrupted every sentences is irksome as well..
Agreed.
I appreciate to be corrected in a constructive way, but when the correction is made in a plain rude way I'd like to remind the genius that math is my strong side, not languages, but still I have been forced to learn Danish, Swedish, English and German and actually English isn't even my second language, but 3rd. Bet they can't understand so many languages.
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  #58  
Old 19.06.2010, 19:20
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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I humbly submit that it is either "the German version" or "German". Non colloquial use of English suggests that names of languages and nationalities don't take the article unless referring to the population of the nation.
No, you don't get it, if a "native" commits a mistake then that is deliberate colloquialism and a witty one at that, it is only when those dumb non-natives do it that they become mistakes

You can see where he comes from "For the non-Brits (ok, maybe non-Aussies and non-Kiwis too) if you want to sound native there is a fantastic colloquial pairing that makes you sound like you were born and bread in blighty:...

I find it sanctimonious, but one must remember that the Brits constitute the single largest nationality on this forum, and not all can be objective (LB and DB are generally exceptions), so it is OK. British is native, everything else is non-native
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  #59  
Old 19.06.2010, 19:21
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

What is English really? It's not a language spoken in England any more. English is my second language and I constantly find myself correcting English people's English. I'm beginning to think it's a language only spoken outside it's home country.
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Old 19.06.2010, 19:25
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Re: The Non-native English Common Mistakes Thread

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I humbly submit that it is either "the German version" or "German". Non colloquial use of English suggests that names of languages and nationalities don't take the article unless referring to the population of the nation.
Would that that were indeed the case.

Sadly, your correspondent is correct in refuting your assertion of his statement being incorrect: in this case, "the German" is an elision of a phrase of the form "the German original" or "the German source". Hence, the "German" in this case remains an adjective, not a noun.
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