"Hi, what's your name?"
Translation:Привет, как тебя зовут?
«Привет» is an informal greeting, and «вас» is a formal pronoun, so it’s not a good idea to use these two forms together (unless you’re using «вас» as a plural — it can be used in informal speech, but then the English would be "What're your names?").
Well, it depends. In some situations, e.g. on an informal party or in the university when talking to fellow students, it might be acceptable. At my work, we have a guidelines of using «ты» to everyone, I was explicitly told this when I started this work (although I keep using «Вы» to most people at work anyway ^^').
In general, I'd recomment to use Вы whenever you're unsure if ты is acceptable.
Also, if someone addresses you with ты, or uses привет or other informal words, you'd also use ты when answering them in most cases.
«Как тебя зовут?» is not translated directly, the Russian sentence is closer to ‘How are you called?’.
I've kinda of had it with this one. Quit the level and restarted because I am trying to get my correct lesson streak! Stop marking me wrong for using вас. Doesn't matter if it's preceeded by "Привет" as you can say that to any fast food restaurant employee but still wouldn't use a form of "ты". Even with my co-workers, sure we'd say Привет, but we're not friends so don't use a form of ты. How are you already so friendly with the person that you say привет, and ты, but then don't know their name?? Or should I assume I am asking only children this kind of question?
It’s not rude, just not formal. Maybe you can compare it a little to calling somebody “sir/ma'am” in American English. You’ll often do so when talking to adults whom they don’t know or who are your superior (your boss, the president, a customer…), but you normally wouldn’t call a kid “sir/ma'am”, even if you’re talking to them politely.
«Как зовут тебя» marks «тебя» as the most important information in the sentence. You could use it if you're asking several people's name:
— Как тебя зовут? 'What's your name?'
— Иван. 'Ivan.'
(To a different person:)
— А как зовут тебя? 'And what's your name?'
Here, 'naming' is established context, previous sentences were about how people are called, so you give emphasis to «тебя» because it's the part of the question that is different from the previous question (even though the previous sentence also had «тебя» as an object, it referred to a different person so we emphasise «тебя» to show it's the new piece of information).
But in most cases «Как тебя зовут?» is the only word order that sounds natural.
Yes, «у тебя» is ungrammatical here.
«У тебя» is ‘at your possession/at your place’, and «тебя» is ‘you’ in the accusative case, used for direct objects (literally the Russian sentence means ‘how do [they] call you?’).
Тебя is the accusative (and genitive) of ты, and вас, similarly, is the accusative/genitive of вы. As randypg says in response to Franoise above, ты corresponds to "thou" in English of 500 to 1000 years ago, and вы is used basically the same as the way "you" was used in English at that time. In Modern English "you" is the only second-person pronoun, so Russian makes a distinction we no longer make in Modern English, but thou (or ты) replaced "you" when it referred to someone familiar or in an informal relationship with the speaker, while in older English and in Russian, "you" or вы refers to someone not so well known, or senior, or in a more formal relationship with the speaker. This distinction still survives in most Indo-European languages (e.g. tu vs. usted in Spanish; du vs. ihr in German), so English is a bit unusual this way!
BTW, the fact that вы also serves as the ONLY way to say "you" as a plural in Russian is mirrored in old modern English and Middle English, where "thou" was strictly singular, transforming into "you" for plural, no matter how familiar. Even this detail seems to be the same in the Romance languages and German and, I'm guessing, a lot of the rest of the Indo-European languages.
Small correction about German: Ihr used to be the formal version of “you” in the past (and you still see it a lot in stories with a medieval/fantasy-like setting) but in Modern German we use Sie instead (coopting the third person plural “they” rather than the second person).
Thanks! I confess I relied on a confusing Wiktionary chart for German, which I don't speak... BTW, does "sie" also serve as a plural like "vous" in French? Come to think of it, the modern usted in Spanish is only singluar, although some areas still use "vosotros," which fits the widespread Indo-European pattern, I guess.
Too idiomatic for a basic student new to the language - как вас зовут is a stock phrase. Do not offer вас as an option if trying to elicit Привет, как тебя зовут the length of this thread is testament to how confusing it is. Suggest altering it for an incorrect grammatical form of "you" or just substitute for an entirely different word
The fact that привет is informal is in the Tips for the Phrases 1 skill (I assume that’s the one containing this task?). Besides though, learning a new skill (including a language) is all about trying things out, making mistakes and learning from them. Duolingo particularly embraces that philosophy because the Tips (even where they are present at all) are not compulsory to read before the lesson – although I would advise to do so, if only to help de-clutter the sentence discussions a bit. If you are graded wrong and you don’t know why, that’s what the sentence discussions are for. For older courses it’s likely that somebody already asked your question, and if they didn’t, feel free to ask yourself. Besides, there’s always a chance that your answer wasn’t actually wrong at all but somebody just forgot to add it to the list of accepted answers.
In any case, the goal is not to get everything right first time, the goal is to learn from the mistakes you do make.