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

Poor and Inaccurate English in the Portuguese Course

I love Duolingo, but here is some constructive feedback on the Portuguese course: As I get more advanced, the use of English (translations and otherwise) is poor or inaccurate too often! Please have native English speakers review the questions and answers. Problems show up consistently with the phrase "used to," which is often rejected. And this sentence is on my app right now: "She used not to remember me." That is very awkward at best.

Duolingo is great, but you can do better.

Thanks!

August 15, 2016

13 Comments


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

I have found that if you report any obvious discrepancies the Duo team will always correct them, if need be. As a free language learning resource this is incomparable.

August 16, 2016

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

Hi! I agree with you. I've noticed many awkward sentences, with some slight grammar mistakes. Thanks for bringing this up! :)

August 15, 2016

[deactivated user]

    "used to" is the imperfect way of translating the imperfect!

    August 17, 2016

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

    I do occasionally use 'used not to', and my husband uses it more often. I think it's down to where you were raised and how old you are. It must be a nightmare of a job making the grammar appropriate for all potential native users of a language.

    As she is spoke, and all that.

    August 17, 2016

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

    Thanks for adding to this feedback!

    August 16, 2016

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

    Thanks for the chuckle, Peter! I appreciate the other comments as well. The most frustrating error is when I use "used to" and it is counted as wrong and corrected as "use to"! This has happened so many times, even though I have consistently reported that my answer was correct over many months. Tempting to toss the app at such times, but it is too much fun. :)

    August 17, 2016

    [deactivated user]

      yes, I know about that one. You learn something every day.

      • I used to loathe Duo, but now I love it.
      • I didn't use to like Duo, but now I love it.

      It's the negation of "used to" that causes the trouble, doesn't it ?

      August 18, 2016

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

      Second one sounds horrific to this Brit's ear - I'd say "I used not to like Duo, but now I love it".

      August 18, 2016

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

      Fair enough. This seems to be something that the English language has not yet solved - either rule seems to produce something bad eventually.

      August 18, 2016

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

      Though the negative "didn't use to" may sound wrong to some people, the real problem is with sentences similar to these:

      Often Duolingo's "use to" should be "usually" rather than "used to".

      August 18, 2016

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

      "Used to" is correct. "Use to" is a solecism that I suspect users have bullied the Portuguese course moderators into accepting.

      August 17, 2016

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

      Just to clarify: Used to is used in affirmative sentences while use to is used in interrogatives and negatives (because two conjugated verbs can not go together).

      August 21, 2016
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