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Is the word "guys" rude if it is used with a mixed group?

Discussion in 'General Debates' started by Smart_Guy, May 28, 2014.

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  1. Yes, it was rude in your context!

    3.7%
  2. No, it was not rude in your context!

    96.3%
  1. Smart_Guy

    Smart_Guy ...
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    Hi all, I hope this finds you well! (I used "all" here just in case)

    I used the word "guys" to address every one in a thread, including both genders, and I had [a] reply attacking me for it.

    I asked an Australian female friend and she said she thinks it is fine, I watched tons of American movies where I see it used normally as per the subject context and I referred to definitions and I found it okay; example, definition #2 in under noun here: Guy | Define Guy at Dictionary.com.

    I'm a non native English speakers, so I might be wrong after all. Please advise me!

    Much obliged!

    Edit:
    If anyone chooses the "yes, it is rude", I'd take that with complete open mind :)
     
    #1 Smart_Guy, May 28, 2014
    Last edited: Oct 7, 2015
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  2. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    "You guys" is often used by gals to refer to other gals & mixed groups.
     
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  3. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva

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    I've only spoken English for 58 years, so I am still getting the hang of the language.

    This expression is situational. In a large gathering, it is meant as a gender neutral term. If it is used in a small gathering it would be gender specific. Confusing, yes, but we all seem to understand.

    That said, if I was to address a large crowd, I would likely go with "Hey, people" instead... as it is inclusive of everyone in all situations.
     
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  4. Jainarayan

    Jainarayan ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय
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    English doesn't have a neuter case anymore, or a t/v distinction (thou/you, tu/vous, tu/vosotros or ustedes) to indicate gender and/or grammatical person. Other nouns and pronouns are filling the gap. To that end, I don't think 'guys' or 'you guys' is rude or incorrect in informal speech. Any phrase or word becomes "correct by common usage", as my language professor used to say.
     
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  5. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    You're doing OK for a young whippersnapper from a backwoods country.
     
  6. Madhuri

    Madhuri RF Goddess
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    Really? Even if I'm just with 2 girls I'll say 'guys'. Here it's just an informal way to address more than one person no matter their gender- even if they are all women.
     
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  7. Desert Snake

    Desert Snake Veteran Member

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    Not rude. In fact, I'm surprised anyone would think it to be incorrect in general conversation..
     
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  8. Smart_Guy

    Smart_Guy ...
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    Thank you very much for the feedback, everyone!

    My control of the language might look good to others in the first glance, but I know that I still have so much to learn to at least have casual conversations with native English speakers!

    I really don't understand the reason of the attack of that poster even though I've never been rude to them!

    I guess there will be more threads like this one. Thank you all for having me here :)
     
  9. Revoltingest

    Revoltingest I have the kavorka
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    Some people are just angry, & lash out over disagreements.
    Even though I find you a poopy head, you don't see me dissing you for it, do you?
     
  10. Alceste

    Alceste Vagabond

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    I think you are misunderstanding what was being highlighted as misogynistic. It wasn't the use of the word "guys", but your support of a man who was spamming a thread with morally repugnant rape apologetics, including the awful idea that women can BENEFIT by being sexually assaulted by men. "Guys" was highlighted to point out that such arguments are only considered reasonable by men, albeit a very insignificant minority of men, thank God.
     
  11. Smart_Guy

    Smart_Guy ...
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    Some times I tend to use alternative words, and for the subject at hand, in different occasions I used "all", "everyone", both especially for formal cases, and just lately "y'all" as I learned it, but not frequently. Are there any other alternative slang/informal words used in the West Coast for "guys"? I lean more towards West Coast American English. A Filipino once asked me if I were American :)

    Thanks again :)

    Well, what can I do but to be kind to them hoping they would improve :)

    Um, what's a "dissing"?

    Wait, I googled it. No, I don't see you dissing me. Is that all you've got? :D
     
  12. Desert Snake

    Desert Snake Veteran Member

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    Dude, your English is great. I wouldn't even know you aren't American if you didn't have it listed by your username/
     
  13. Smart_Guy

    Smart_Guy ...
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    Thanks man. That's really encouraging :)

    Hmm... should I change it? ... maaan, I'm too lazy to do it :D

    Some of RF members helped me learn even more in the chat room. I thank all of them :)
     
  14. Alex_G

    Alex_G Enlightner of the Senses

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    Words themselves don’t have rudeness as an inherent property. Rudeness is entirely contextual. It relates to your manner of conduct and defines actions that lack empathy, consideration and respect.

    Many factors will determine the potential 'rudeness' of an action including who you are talking to, why, where and what about, your attitude, body language and so on. Navigating all these things is what it means to be a social being, and ultimately a morally sensitive one.

    Like the derogatory term 'n-i-g-g-e-r', profoundly rude in its use was re-appropriated by the black community and used amongst themselves as a term of affection and comradery. Clear example of how 'rudeness' is rooted in context and motive, rather than existing independently in words alone.

    'Guys' as a word does legitimately mean 'general people' in modern informal speak. Originating from 'Guy Fawkes' i believe, the word has altered its meaning from initially 'bad/odd man' to a general meaning of 'persons'. The word doesn’t really have any overarching gender focus, and is thus not really bound to any exclusive use to describe either men or women.

    As I've said, rudeness will depend much more on you than the word itself.
     
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  15. Smart_Guy

    Smart_Guy ...
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    Much obliged, kind Sir!

    It does seem to be a problem to non native English speakers that they concentrate too much in what they want to say and have the behavior seem kinda weird. I can notice this here in RF. Some one once told me that he wonders if "one specific member of RF" was rude or if it was his bad English. But I guess it is shown more in serious conversations in real life!
     
  16. Alceste

    Alceste Vagabond

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    Y'all is very American. Particularly Texan, I think. It would sound strange in any other English speaking country. Guys is much more common throughout North America. Australia is "fellas" out some such thing, and it's "lads" in Ireland.

    That applies to groups of men or gender mixed groups who are on friendly terms. You can see kind of a theme there that is mildly annoying if you're not male, but I'm not going to get into it here.

    Groups of women will still sometimes use "guys", probably mostly from habit and because "girls" (the feminine counterpart) is a more awkward word to say and tends to conjure up pictures of female children rather than youthful adults. But we do use it occasionally, for example "girls' night out".

    I wouldn't recommend using "girls" here to refer to a group of women. ;)
     
  17. Erebus

    Erebus Well-Known Member

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    Same here. In fact it's almost exclusively used as a gender neutral way of addressing a group. Occasionally somebody will use it to signify solely men, but it's rare.
     
  18. Smart_Guy

    Smart_Guy ...
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    Thanks for the heads up ma'am, especially those regarding female :)

    I hear the Irish wrestler Shamus says "fellas" all the time too!

    The funny thing is, it was a male who attacked me for using "guys" for everyone. That gave me suspicions that I was really rude to the ladies there. I'm glad I got it covered now. Thanks for the reassurance :)

    Note: sorry, when I tried to frubal you, it said that I made too many frubals for the last 24 hours :(
     
  19. Amechania

    Amechania Daimona of the Helpless

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    Just use "*******" Smart Guy. You can't go wrong.
     
    #19 Amechania, May 28, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 2, 2014
  20. CynthiaCypher

    CynthiaCypher Well-Known Member

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    I am from California, I call just about everyone "dude"
     
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