Do you agree that "Who is you" and "Who are you" mean different things? I hear some say that "Who is you" is wrong. But why is it wrong?

Who are you? - "Who" is focused on the qualities or capacities inherent in "you"?

Who is you? - "Who" is focused on other entities/people among whom there is you.

What do you think of "who is you?" Can it be used?

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    Does this answer your question? "Who is you" – not "are" Jun 16, 2022 at 6:53
  • I already flagged your question as a duplicate and downvoted it.
    – user150280
    Jun 16, 2022 at 9:20
  • Eden0516, thank you, it was very kind of you.
    – user1425
    Jun 16, 2022 at 9:59
  • 1
    @Eden0516 well all very well, but it's not a duplicate. Jun 16, 2022 at 10:02
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    @Eden0516 Because you're not the only one who is wrong, obviously. One question asks "why is 'who are you' correct?" This one asks (effectivley) "are there any usages of `who is you?' that are correct?" Different question, but requires the reader to appreciate that degree of subtlety. Jun 16, 2022 at 12:30

1 Answer 1


There is a usage in which "Who is you" can be valid.

For example (a little contrived, but I can't think of anything else):

"You need to be ready to protect us against the bad guys."

"Who is `you' in this context? Surely you are specifically addressing the law enforcers here?"

  • Don't you think that "I don't know who you are" and "I don't know who is you" mean different things?
    – user1425
    Jun 16, 2022 at 10:45
  • Yes of course they do. Don't you? Jun 16, 2022 at 12:28
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    I think this answer is misleading. The only reason Who is `you' in this context? is a valid utterance is because it's a mention (as opposed to use) of the token 'you'. Which you've quite correctly enclosed in 'scare quotes' to indicate the non-syntactic mention of the 'symbol', but you haven't called attention to the fact that almost any sequence of words can validly occur in English if we allow the inclusion of 'scare-quoted mentions'. Jun 16, 2022 at 12:49
  • I agree with FumbleFingers. It's like someone asks you can I say "I is correct"? And you replied yes, in the following situation: A: "Which answer is correct? "I" or "He"?" B: Oh, "I" is correct. "A" is asking whether the be verb is is used correct!!!
    – user150280
    Jun 16, 2022 at 13:49
  • There are people at the party. I am talking to someone on the phone and have never seen them before. Why is it wrong to say? "I want to find you. But who is you among all the guests?"
    – user1425
    Jun 16, 2022 at 15:56

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