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Can you help me with those questions, I would like to know what is the best way to ask someone:

How long have you been working for Apple?

I am not sure I have to use "for" or "At" Apple. And if the person is not working anymore I think the right questions is:

How long did you work for Apple?

Is that correct?


Also:

I am at a restaurant

vs

I am at the restaurant.

Is there any differences between those two?

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    You seem to have some typos in your second pair of examples. Apart from that, you're only supposed to ask about one thing in one question here on ELL. Are you asking about [to work] at/for [company], or [to be at] a/the [location]? Commented Mar 7, 2017 at 15:22
  • I think this should really be split into two questions, since one is about at vs. for, and one is about the indefinite or the indefinite article.
    – stangdon
    Commented Mar 7, 2017 at 15:40
  • The first "subquestion" is a duplicate of Working in / for / at?, and the second is a duplicate of (at/in/on) (-/a/the) restaurant. This is the kind of problem we get with posts containing multiple questions. Commented Mar 7, 2017 at 16:07

2 Answers 2

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How long have you been working for Apple?

is the correct question for someone still working at Apple.

How long did you work for Apple?

is the correct question for someone who once worked at Apple, but is no longer there.

In your questions about Apple, either at or for would be correct and would be understood to have the same meaning.

I'm at a restaurant

could be used to tell someone you are currently at a restaurant, the restaurant could be any restaurant.

I'm at the restaurant

could be used to tell someone you are at a restaurant which you both already know about, maybe you agreed to meet there.

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  1. I would use "at" when talking about a big company, such as Apple. "For" is generally used when referring to a person or group of people, not an entity. For example "I work for Matthew".

  2. There's a typo in your second choice, but if you're asking what the difference is between "a" and "the", it is that "the", which is called a definite article, refers to a specific noun, whereas "a", called an indefinite article, is non-specific.

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    Not my downvote, but I can see why this was downvoted. While it's true that we wouldn't use "at" in the case of a boss (in other words, it's "I work for Matthew," not, "I work at Matthew") the inverse is not necessarily true. In fact, these Ngrams show that, when talking about a big company, using for may be more widespread than using at.
    – J.R.
    Commented Mar 7, 2017 at 16:30
  • Understood. That's kind of what I was trying to say by writing "generally", that it's not a set in stone rule, but I take your point. Thanks for the feedback.
    – wysiwyg
    Commented Mar 7, 2017 at 19:45

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