So, just don't use gemeinsam unless it's followed by another idea such as "auf einer Insel"?
Or, to avoid confusion all together, could one just completely stop using gemeinsam, and just resort to zusammen all the time? Or are there cases where you can only use gemeinsam, and zusamman doesn't work?
Sie haben ein gemeinsames Kind. gemeinsam as adjective, where "zusammen" does not work, because "zusammen" is an adverb.
[[All sentences with a verb starting by the prefix "zusammen-", for example: zusammenkleben(~stick together), there "gemeinsam" does not work.]]
PS: Sie sind gemeinsam auf einer Insel. there the verb is like the verb "befinden". "gemeinsam" is there like an adverb/ or it is an adverb. "Sie befinden sich / stehen gemeinsam auf einer Insel.~ They are/stand together on an island.
In the sentence "Sie sind gemeinsam." "gemeinsam" would be an adjective and the sentence does not have any sense.
(How do I have to count? Sie sind gemeinsam auf einer Insel. is already explained. )
I hope/ think you think of: Sie sind zusammen. and Sie sind zusammen auf einer Insel.
While "gemeinsam" refere to the commonalities of persons/things, commonalities as contrast word to differences. "zusammen" is more "they are very close to each other (maybe physically, maybe only by their intellectual work". The sentence in the examples above with the word "zusammen" has the same meaning like the sentence with "gemeinsam".
You can't know it. The knowledge if it is "you(plural)" or "they" is in general given by context. Duolingo often don't offer context, that is the reason why often more than one solution is correct. ("You(singular)" can't be right because of context - a single person can't be together.)
Please have a look at this site for different meanings and usage of zusammen: http://en.bab.la/dictionary/german-english/zusammen . Some of the likely meanings can be: together, common, altogether, contiguous, synced etc.
There is no English word, if there is, we will still use the German word for it. If I can still remember, it was Cahn, Ingold and Prelog first came in with the such usage in organic chemistry. We used it to determine which has the higher priorites of 3 or more different kinds of branches in alkenes. It is to know the stereoisomer of an alkene. Because zusammen and entgegen are not English words, I used some simple methods to remember it. Zusammen is 'On Ze Zame Zide' while entgegen is 'E' for 'enemies'.
You can notice it by looking at the verbs ending.
- Sie ist = she is
- Sie sind = they are, formal you , formal you plural
the "Sie sind" is for the formal you singular or plural; the "sie sind" means "they are". In case the word "Sie" is the first word of the sentence, you can only notice it by context.
Why do you use "you" for one or even more than one person, it is so confusing. ;-)
Table for disconfusing:
- you all = ihr
- you, Peter = du, Peter ~ informal
- you, Mr Miller = Sie, Herr Miller ~ formal
- you, mr Miller and Mr Smith = Sie, Herr Miller und Herr Smith ~ formal
- sie ist ein Mädchen = she is a girl
- sie sind Mädchen = they are girls
- Sie sind Herr Miller = you are Mr. Miller
- Sie sind Herr Miller und Herr Smith = you are Mr. Miller and Mr. Smith
The formal "you" (=Sie) is always capitalized. It is also capitalized in the middle of a sentence.
- Heute sind Sie hier. (= Today you are here.)
In my exercise DL offered me the word You instead of They and validated the answer
How is "Sie sind Zusammen" not "You(plural) are Together"???
Sie sind zusammen. can mean either of "They are together" or "You (formal) are together".
Remember that the first word of a sentence is always capitalised, so you cannot tell the difference between sie and Sie when they are the first word of a sentence.
I typed "They are together" two times.
Was this a listening exercise or a translation exercise?
Please fix this.
Nobody can see what kind of exercise you had nor exactly what you wrote.
It's notoriously difficult to see one's own errors -- I've overlooked many of my own -- and so I don't trust people to infallibly report what they wrote.
Please show us.
The next time something unexpected happens, please take a screenshot showing the question and your answer, upload it to a website somewhere such as imgur/postimage/ibb, and put the URL of the image into your comment here.
being docked for typing in the correct answer is annoying many people.
I'm sure it is.
But being docked for typing in a wrong answer is reasonable.
Please show that you typed an appropriate answer.