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"What is wrong?"

Translation:Was ist falsch?

January 3, 2013

33 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/imdn

Can someone explain how 'wrong' creeps into what should be literally translated as 'What is?'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kyky

You ask "Was ist?" when you assume that something is wrong. "Was ist los?", "Was ist denn?" or "Stimmt was nicht?" go in the same direction.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RubberDucky

But shouldn't we have been told this before a timed practice?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/schatzie35

Right? They shouldn't make us guess that. There's no way a beginner could tell it's commonly used as a complete sentence. They do that sometimes, though--the trick questions.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/duncan0318

It should be Was ist Los?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Heptile

'Was ist los' is also marked right


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ilciavo

I think this should be "Was ist nicht richtig?" or "Was ist falsch?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kyky

Literally, yes. But if you ask someome "What's wrong?" if you see that they are upset, you say "Was ist?" in German.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BenMH

I guess 'Was ist falsch?' is 'what is incorrect', right? Could you use it when, say, someone is panicking and you're trying to find out what's wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/V2Blast

Yes to your first guess. As the others mentioned above, to ask what's up or what's wrong, it'd be "Was ist los?" or just "Was ist?" (presumably just a shortened version of the former).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dylan_Nicholson

Isn't "Was ist los" the normal way of saying this?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GeorgLack

That would be: - What is the problem?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Dylan_Nicholson

Which is what "What's wrong" means in English 95% of the time. If you wanted to ask what was factually incorrect you'd ask something like "Which bit is wrong?". Or can 'falsch' in German also just indicate generally "not-quite-okay"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mr.speak

I (nativ) wouldn't use "falsch" as 'not-quite-okay' generally. It sounds too strong as 'totally false'. If you want to ask what's factually is incorrect, you'd better use these ones: "Was (genau) ist falsch?" (What's exactly wrong?) or even "Wo liegt der Fehler?" (Where is [lit.: 'lies'] the fault?)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlecSchwartz

Who even uses that?? It should be was ist los?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HIDp4ACH

Although it has been many, many decades since middle school and high school german class, I do recall that "Was ist los?" was always given to mean "What is wrong?". I will never understand what the goal is here sometimes.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amira.Hanafy

"Was geht?" means "what's wrong", correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/kyky

I am afraid not. "Was geht?" is a colloquial expression for "How are you?".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amira.Hanafy

Oh! so it looks like "What's up?" :D (I'm trying to connect both languages in a memorizable way) :D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/smozoma

Think of "was geht" as, "how's it going" :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GeorgLack

I think rather Wie geht's?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jk3047

Does this also translate to "what's wrong?" in the same sense as "what's the matter?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Victor238014

I got a little bit confused by reading the comments. Is "was ist falsch?" Common in German to mean "what's wrong"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Peelyo

What is this verkehrt which translates to everything?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Konrad-Michal

Why not "Was ist schlecht?"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nienor

Falsch is wrong, schlecht is bad. You can ask though "What is bad?" e.g. when you are in student cafeteria, you can ask, which meal is bad and which is good:)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Konrad-Michal

Thanks, it was helpful.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/securus01

Why not "was ist nicht richtig"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mr.speak

That is: "What is not right?" literally, but can be used also.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rhimebaugh

Makes perfect sense to me. I say "what is it?" when I can tell something's wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Skinflies

Why is "Was ist?" not accepted? Is this not a normal way of asking what's up or what's wrong?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mr.speak

The (short) forms "Was?" / "Was ist?" / "Was ist los?" / "Was ist denn?"... are a kind of slang. They are mainly used if you approach/disturb someone without saying a word. Then he/she might ask you (maybe being nerved) this, meaning "What do you want (from me)?"

On the other hand "Was ist falsch?" / "Stimmt was nicht?" is only used if there is something wrong or you think that or someone gives you a questioning look. However the diffrences are only little...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Laoibhse1

Should Duo have asked what is the matter instead of what is wrong (incorrect)? I wanted to type was ist los, saw it wasn't on the hints and went with was stimmt nicht...

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