Murphy's Grammar says that we use interested to ... to say how somebody reacts to what they hear/see/read/learn. And we use interested in doing something when we're thinking of doing it, we would like to do it.

But I've found these usages from Google News:

We're always interested in hearing about news in our community.

We will be interested in hearing the company's progress on these projects.

I would be interested in hearing any proposals he might have.

Should not interested to hear be used in those sentences?


1 Answer 1


No, because all examples describe a future state. (Although in practice, neither would be viewed as inappropriate.**)

All of those examples apply to some possible future event (that, as you say, the speaker is thinking of doing or would like to do, i.e., hearing news, hearing progress, hearing proposals), so the formations as given can be correct.

If they were phrased in the past tense, interested to would be appropriate. For example, if the speaker had already heard the proposals, "I was interested to hear any proposals he might have had" would be a proper statement of his mood after hearing the proposals.

** The speaker could also be considered to be reflecting on a hypothetical future state, so "I would be interested to hear any proposals he might have," meaning "If I did hear any of his proposals, 'interested' would describe my mood" wouldn't come across as incorrect.

  • What about this? Do you know the elections are coming?, Ah, I know. I'll be interested to see who wins this time? -It's future.
    – Maulik V
    Mar 1, 2014 at 7:13
  • @MaulikV As I said, in practice neither is really inappropriate. We're splitting grammatical hairs here, and English speakers aren't careful to make the distinction between this future mental state versus a current mental state. "I'll be interested to see who wins" to be absolutely proper should be "I'll be interested in seeing who wins." But "I was only interested in solving the problem!" is correct because the speaker is describing her mental state in a point in the past when she had not yet solved the problem.
    – relaxing
    Mar 1, 2014 at 18:33

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