Questions tagged [politeness]

This tag is for questions regarding the polite use of words or phrases.

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How does it really feel when people say "thank you for your patience" to their clients in English? [closed]

Yesterday I invited a client twice. For the first appointment I made, the client met with me but we could not complete our task due to lack of preparation. So the client left and I made the second ...
Stats Cruncher's user avatar
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0 answers
101 views

How to ask to let you pass in the bus

For example, you are sitting near the window on the bus. A person sits next to you and blocks the passage (not on purpose). And here is your stop and you need to get out. How to ask politely to let ...
user486193's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
546 views

‘I’d appreciate it if you do that’ vs I’d appreciate it if you could do that’

I want to politely ask someone to finalize something. Are both of the following correct? If so, what is the difference between their meaning. I also want to know if 1 (and perhaps 2 as well) is polite....
Sasan's user avatar
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3 votes
3 answers
132 views

"If you do not mind" or "If you agree": what is the best choice?

I am writing an email to my team to ask if I can use their time slot to discuss one of my open questions. It looks like this question can be useful for all of us. I think it makes sense to discuss it ...
user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
106 views

Does this sound rude? How could I have said it better?

Me: Good afternoon, ma'am Josie. Just letting you know I'm ready for the interview. Could you please let me know if it will still happen this afternoon? Thank you. Josie: Hello. You were scheduled for ...
alex1923's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
991 views

What is a standard polite answer to a stranger to ask about the purpose of their approaching me?

When a stranger approaches me with a generic salutation without a specific request -- e.g., "Hi!", how should I politely inquire about their purpose or matter/ topic of addressing me ? ...
Alexander Gelbukh's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
179 views

Is the word 'watchdog' derogatory or disapproving?

In Cambridge Dictionary, The Free Dictionary, Merriam Webster, dictionary.com and The Britannica Dictionary, none say that 'watchdog', under the definition quoted below, is derogatory or disapproving. ...
Michael's user avatar
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2 votes
4 answers
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Could 'the' suggest a patronizing tone? [closed]

In this blog, the writer says as follows. Example 3. a. ✓ Asians usually have dark hair. b. ☓ The Asian usually has dark hair. You should never use this construction to talk about groups of people, ...
Michael's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
63 views

Does 'I think' make a statement more euphemistic?

Does adding 'I think' before a statement about others' behaviours, opinions, characters or the like make it more euphemistic? Say, compare 1'. You're wrong. 1''. I think you're wrong. 2'. You're a ...
Michael's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
471 views

I would appreciate it if you would do/did

Which of the following sentence sounds more correct/formal? I would appreciate it if you would… I would appreciate it if you did… As for the first sentence, I know it is unusual to put would after ...
Alon's user avatar
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"You have backups, right?" Does this sound sardonic / sarcastic?

Does "You have backups, right?" sound sardonic / sarcastic? Context: a user finds out that his database is corrupt in a public discussion on a community forum. I suggest that the best ...
bahrep's user avatar
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1 answer
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"Would you be kind enough to answer me?" Or: "Could you kindly answer me?"

Do these two sentences have the same meaning? Which of these phrases sounds more natural? Would you be kind enough to answer me? Or: Could you kindly answer me?
Southman's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
148 views

Is the adjective 'cocky' a discrimination word?

When used as a noun, 'cocky' can mean 'a farmer whose farm is regarded as small or of little account'. Therefore, I suspect that the meaning of 'cocky' as an adjective stems from people's stereotype ...
Michael's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
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Would dream of ( in a positive clause)

But you are very welcome for my having given you my time, not that you would ever dream of taking the trouble to say "thank you" after I have gone the trouble of helping you and correcting ...
ForOU's user avatar
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What are some polite responses to someone introducing themselves over the phone?

If a person comes up to you physically and then introduces themselves, your generic reply is going to be "Nice to meet you". It's not going to work in remote communications because you don't ...
Sergey Zolotarev's user avatar
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2 answers
112 views

Polite way to convey something instead of using YOU

Last time you took 80% share, so I think at least 70% should be mine this time. Is there a more polite way to say this? I feel the use of the word you sounds like I am blaming someone. Not sure if ...
nick shetty's user avatar
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1 answer
118 views

Is it rude to ask “do you want one” to an adult?

Is it rude to ask “do you want one” if you’re trying to ask if an adult also wants something? (ex: food) I’m worried if this would sound rude or disrespectful.
Cookiewookie's user avatar
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2 answers
13k views

Could we use "thank you too" instead of saying "you're welcome"?

Could we use "thank you too" for the response to someone has thanked us? Is it grammatically correct to use that?
Naim Mukhlis's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
524 views

Polite alternatives to "That's none of your business"

I'm looking for a more polite alternative to "That's none of your business". Would "That doesn't concern you." and "That's none of your concern." be more polite? Would ...
Bobobobobo11's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
607 views

How polite is "Perhaps[Maybe] you could" when you ask for request?

When is it possible to say for instance: Perhaps you could help me with that. I would really appreciate it if you could compare this one with: Would you please help me with that? Can you please ...
Taro's user avatar
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1 answer
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Should I use "inside the drawer" or "in the drawer" when I am talking about a small object?

When I was taking my English classes I came across a doubt: What's the proper way to say: I forgot my book in the drawer or inside the drawer?
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The use of "please" in instructions

I'm translating instructions for my company's employees on how to enter data into a database. Most of the instructions are phrased as statements rather than imperatives (e.g. "In this field XX ...
Lillatanten's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
72 views

Is it offensive to say "utilize workers"?

Is it offensive to say "utilize someone"? Automated factories perform better than those that utilize human workers. If it is, could you please give me a polite and positive alternative?
a.toraby's user avatar
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23 votes
7 answers
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What to answer to "you're too kind"?

I told a guy I knew that he looks good in a pink shirt. He told me: "Thank you, you're too kind". What is the appropriate English answer in this case? Also I'm not sure if the guy's answer ...
Daisy's user avatar
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1 answer
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Is it OK to say "Thanks all the same" in this scenario?

Someone sent a message to me unexpectedly and I replied with a question mark, then he told me that he just made a mistake by selecting the wrong recipient. I read the message and found that it is very ...
Lerner Zhang's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
97 views

I will be/am interested to see

I will be interested to see whether there’s a white Christmas in London tomorrow. I am interested to see whether there’s a white Christmas in London tomorrow. What is the difference between (1) and (...
Mr. X's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
196 views

How to politely end a phone call? [closed]

Sometimes when someone calls you، you need to end the call because there are no further things to talk about. As you have not initiated the call you expect the other party to end it. But sometimes ...
Real Dreams's user avatar
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2 answers
2k views

Alternative to "Could you please"?

I have been using the following phrase when requesting information through email. Could you please ...? For example, "could you please send me the required documents?". As English is not ...
Idonknow's user avatar
  • 101
2 votes
1 answer
556 views

Does writing 'DO' let me know or 'DO' confirm sound rude?

I wrote to a colleague and wanted the respondent to reconfirm back a detail. My sentence goes. Do confirm back if the sample used is from ___. Does writing 'DO' sounds rude. Does it sound like I am ...
Sum Chee Yee's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
2k views

In the US, on what occasion do you say "sir" when your listener is obviously younger than you?

I'm Asian who learned English at school. Our teachers taught us in class to add "sir" to be polite when talking to men. I'd assumed that you say so only when your listener is older than you. ...
nat 123's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
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What's the correct form of this question?

I would like to know, what's the respectful format of this question: ( Business context ) Can we have a call? Could we have a call? Can I call you? Can I meet with you? Could I meet with you?
csharp_devloper31's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
37 views

"as claimed by" is it appropriate to be used?

I am doing a literature review on cocoa demand and supply. The norm is cocoa demand is going up slightly. However, I was reading an article stating: Demand for cocoa is predicted to rise by 30% by ...
Ahmed K. Moustafa's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
818 views

Can you call me after sometime? [closed]

I want to know which question is correct and polite with an interviewer: Would you please call me after sometimes? Or Can you please call me after somtime?
Syed Anwar Ahmed's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
45 views

How to ask for a clarification for some word

For example, someone said: The dm said its our call I'm new to D&D, so I don't understand what does it mean by "our call". How do you ask for that? I tried: What do you mean by "...
Xwtek's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
56 views

Social question for using titles before name

I'd like to ask about English culture. IF an (elementary) teacher address a parent without using Mr. Or Ms., but with first and last name only on their first email , what does it mean? Isn't this ...
Joe Kim's user avatar
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3 votes
2 answers
1k views

Does it sound rude to say "you'd better..."?

When I want to make some suggestions to others, does it sound rude to say "you'd better..."? I feel like it contains the implications that I am bossing people around. If so, what are some ...
HypnoticBuggyWraithVirileBevy's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
2k views

Is it proper to say “welcome back” to my colleague

I want to say "Welcome back" to my team mate who is at the same level in the organisation, when he came back to work after the new year holiday. But it sounds like a message sent from a boss ...
LUSAQX's user avatar
  • 127
2 votes
1 answer
4k views

What should I say in response to "I hope next year is better"?

How should I reply to this statement without using a bland "me too"? I want the conversation to keep going past this, but I'm not sure how to respond well.
user127444's user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
200 views

How do I ask someone his/her position in his family(among his siblings)? [duplicate]

I want to learn a person's order/position in his family i.e., among his siblings. So can I say: "Where do you rank among your siblings?" Is this usage correct? If not, can anyone provide ...
Bigfoot Hani's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
23k views

Asking politely for a meeting

I would like to politely ask my professor to meet me sometime soon. Could someone please let me know (1) whether my sentences are grammatically correct and also not weird to the ears of a native ...
F.K's user avatar
  • 135
0 votes
1 answer
955 views

"Can you do this" or "Can you please do this" or "Could you please do this"?

Which is the correct response to someone if they want you to do this?
Abby's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
74 views

Would it be considered controversial to describe a character in my script as "black"? [closed]

Don't know if this is the wrong forum for this. I'm writing a script and I have described a character in it as "a tall black dude". Would that be considered controversial in the US?
ftgyhj's user avatar
  • 11
0 votes
1 answer
36 views

Who is being pleased, and why?

This is more of a curiosity than a full problem, but I was wondering who is being pleased, in common phrases using the term. (At breakfast) “May I have some jam, please?” In this case the jam-...
Qroqodeal's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
7k views

politely ask someone not to do something

I want to very politely ask someone (my professor) not to do something anymore, and I've been searching about how I should do it for more than 2 two hours, yet I could not find any useful answer. To ...
F.K's user avatar
  • 135
2 votes
2 answers
5k views

”Need to” and ”Would need to”

What is the difference between the following sentences? (1) You/I need to do it (2) You/I would need to do it Do we use the second one for distancing from reality and being more polite?
F.K's user avatar
  • 135
0 votes
2 answers
249 views

Tell me as a response

if someone ask your opinion just with your name, is it rude to answer “tell me”? For example, during a meeting, your boss exposes an idea and just say, Mely?is it rude just answering tell me
Mely's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
1k views

It's the least I could do/have done

Is It's the least I could do. or It's the least I could have done. better in response to "Thank you"? I have seen people using "it's the least I could do" but personally, I ...
user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
63 views

Polite way to ask salary

I'd like to know what is the most polite way to ask a university director/coordinator in a email how much is the stipend/salary of a graduate program. Thank you very much!
Barbara's user avatar
  • 51
0 votes
1 answer
661 views

What does "if you have anything else to say" mean?

if you have anything else to say What does it mean? Is it offensive or respectful to use it?
Zheer's user avatar
  • 115
0 votes
2 answers
69 views

Dealing with unknown rude passenger

If in a train or bus some unknown elderly but rude passenger particularly a man, an old man, sitting on a seat which was already reserved by me, how to ask him to get up from there(the seat), Is "...
Chaitali Kutemate's user avatar

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