We were told on an earlier lesson that Dative was no movement or movement within. Accusative involved movement from one place to another. Following someone indicates movement from one place to another (unless following on Facebook?), so I thought Accusative. What is the true story? Is this one of those verbs that breaks the rule?
My guess is that following a person can be understood as remaining close to that person (within the proximity of the other person). The verb Follow implies a relation between you and the other person, regardless of what that person does in relation to some third system. So it is not movement from A to B; just movement within the proximity of B. Like Moon following the Earth where ever the last one goes. So it is dativ.
Can someone explain when to use dich v dir?
Rule of thumb: the direct object of a verb is in the accusative case.
Then you have to learn a list of exceptions which take an object in the dative case, such as folgen or danken. There are only comparatively few of those -- perhaps two dozen reasonably useful ones.