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  5. "電気をつけていいですか?"

"電気をつけていいですか?"

Translation:May I turn on the light?

June 10, 2017

73 Comments


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

Shouldn't it be ~てもいいですか ?


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

This is correct also.


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

I think this would be better too...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vladistev9

Is も here used as a particle?


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

The help said electricity. Can I turn on the electricity was wrong


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

Electricity is correct. However, the sentence refers to the translation that is "light" (electric) instead.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Biomechanic2010

Also ii in this means okay or good. Its another form of yoku. So phrase that are "action.... ii desuka" means "is it ok to do this?"

Youre right though, iite can be "says.". I dont know the rule offhand to tell when it's different aside from the particle preceeding it and context.


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

This sounds more like "may I" than "can I."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Carl759216

More or less the same. A more literal translation would perhaps be "Is it okay to turn on the light?".


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

Spoken English vs. technically correct English. :) If you ask "can I" and being super pedantic, you're asking if you're able to do it. Cue any English teacher responding with "I don't know, can you?"


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

Spoken English is still correct. Grammar rules change based on what's socially accepted.


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

So let's stop to perpetuate errors, shall we?


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

You are, of course, right. My question was really whether I was correct in reporting "may I" as an answer that should also be accepted.


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

I think you were so much that in fact I also reported it myself :)


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

'May I' accepted 7/ 15/18


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nhammer10

pedantic, great word


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

That is what I answered the first time, and I think it would be better to translate it this way, specifically to avoid confusion with the potential form if that is talk later.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eiluned.bubble

Oddly, they don't accept this answer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/melink14

Yes, just reported that they didn't accept "Is it okay if I turn on the lights?"


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

i tried that -- was marked wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Goren17

Can I use "is it okay to"? This sounds more natural and seems like this is even closer to the Japanese text


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

Yes, but remember that it does not go both ways. You should usually translate an English sentence using the phrase "may I" or "can I" into a Japanese sentence that uses the phrase "いいですか" or "よろしいですか", despite it not being a literal translation. There are other forms of asking for permission depending on context, but it is never expressed in Japanese in terms of ability, unlike English.


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

Is it okay if i turn on the light? Should be accepted, right?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mario119640

That is also my answer


[deactivated user]

    believe it or not, but that's how people normally speak in US, and yet once again duolingo refuses to accept this natural form of American politeness

    P.S. I also use "is is okay" (which sounds more like a polite offer), instead of "can I" (which sounds more pushy)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AdamScott794079

    May I. May I turn on the lights.


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

    Can I is the new May I. Get over it


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

    Absolutely, though "may I" should also be accepted here, so AdamScott should report it, if he hasn't already.


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

    This is true for casual spoken English, but to avoid confusion they should teach the word as "may" since "can" has a different meaning in many situations


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

    Incorrect - "can I?" means "am I able to?" "May I" means "Am I allowed to?" "as any fule no"... very different...


    [deactivated user]

      "Can I?" can also mean "Am I allowed to?" (for example, "I have a fever, so can I go home?" spoken to a teacher means the same as "I have a fever, so am I allowed to go home?"), but "May I?" can never mean "Am I able to?".

      So "Can I?" has two meanings: "Am I able to?" and "Am I allowed to?".

      But "May I?" has only one meaning: "Am I allowed to?".


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JustinDono3

      Actually, both have two meanings:

      "Can" refers to both physical capability and permission. "May" refers to possibility and permission.

      "May" has been used longer for asking permission but "can" is just as valid - the difference today can be considered one of formaility. "May I go to the washroom" effectively asks if the possibility exists that you will do so. This indirectness, much like in Japanese, was considered more polite than asking whether you are "able to". Both questions are inderect however, and so the same elementary school joke about "I don't know, can you?" actually applies to both, it just doesn't sound as familiar in modern english:

      "Can I go to the washroom?" "I don't know, can you?"

      "May I go to the washroom?" "I don't know, may you?"

      Really, any question can be answered with "I don't know" - "Do I have permission to go to the washroom?" "I don't know, do you?"; "Will I go to the washroom?" "I don't know, will you?" - so if you have a really sassy teacher who just won't cut you a break, and you really need to go, go for the direct route:

      "Please allow me to go to the washroom"


      [deactivated user]

        When you talk about the second meaning of “may”, you’re using confusing sentences.

        So for anyone, who’s not a native speaker of English, and got confused after reading the above explanation, here’s the summary: the word “may” is not equal to the word “can”.

        “can” means 1.”to be able to” and 2.“to be allowed to”.

        Can I go home tonight? = Am I able to go home tonight? / Am I allowed to go home tonight? I can go home tonight. = I am able to go home tonight. / I am allowed to go home tonight.

        “may” means ”to be allowed to” (most of the time)

        May I go home tonight? = Am I allowed to go home tonight?

        However, in statements (especially in sentences that start with “I/we” or “he/she/it/they” the word “may” can also imply UNCERTAIN possibility. In other words something that maybe will happen or maybe won’t happen. In this cases “may” means something like “maybe + verb”

        I may go home tonight. = Maybe I can go home tonight. / I am allowed to go home tonight.

        He may like it. = Maybe he will like it. / He is allowed to like it.

        She may wear it to the party. = Maybe she’ll wear it to the party. / She is allowed to wear it to the party.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Xiang-yu

        電気を点けて良いですか?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lwPo32

        Is there a rule when it is って and when て?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Carl759216

        Yes, there is. て is for る-verbs (most verbs that end with る). って is for う-verbs (all other verbs, including some that end with る confusingly enough) that end with う, る, or つ. Verbs that end with く use いて. Verbs that end with す use して. Verbs that end with ぬ, む, ぐ, or ぶ use んで.

        You may have noticed that some verbs drop the る when ます is added. Those are る-verbs. Verbs that instead change the last character to the character that has the same consonant sound, but "i" as the vowel sound (る to り, く to き, う to い, etc.) are う-verbs.

        る-verb example: つける、つけます、つけて

        う-verb examples: わかる、わかります、わかって

        聞く、聞きます、聞いて

        話す、話します、話して

        遊ぶ、遊びます、遊んで


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

        Slight correction: verbs that end inぐ use いで.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tadpole17

        They are categorized as Godan and Ichidan verbs. You can see the category in the dictionary. All Ichidan verbs end in ru. Godan can end in -aru, -uru and -oru, and all other syllables. Verbs that end in -eru or -iru can be Godan or Ichidan, more likely the latter. Ichidan verbs drop the ru and add -masu, -te, -ta, etc.; Godan - look it up! Rules are more complicated. BTW わかる is Godan.


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

        yup, verb te~ form conjugations vary depending on the type of verb and also their ending. Give it a quick search


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

        It's more like "is it good to turn on the lights?"


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

        Tried this and got rejected... I feel like this is reasonable informal English, and the closest translation


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AngeloMarc14

        how about "can I switch on the light", that's what we say in australia


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nicolajade95

        How do you know this isn't can YOU turn on the light?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rk5I3

        Because this Japanese structure 〜ていいですか or 〜てもいいですか is used for asking permission.

        "Can you turn on the light?" is not asking for a permission, so you would use another structure for it. For example 電気をつけてくれますか (asking a favour) or 電気をつけませんか (making a suggestion) or 電気をつけられますか (asking one's ability).


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Harry_k.nl

        @Rk513 I don't fully understand the examples. According to my dictionaries: つけてくれます: not recognized as a proper inflection つけません: recognized as the polite negative form つけられます: recognized as the polite potential form


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JooArthur186866

        What is the need of いい?


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

        A more literal translation is "is it good if I turn on the light". "Can I turn on the light" is an acceptable variation.


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

        Wouldn't "Can I turn the light on?" be correct?


        [deactivated user]

          I strongly disagree with how duolingo blatantly refuses to add "is it okay to..." form for these sorts of statements. In my experience with Japanese & English, it would be more correct than the current translation.

          電気をつけていいですか should be in English as "Is it okay to turn on the light?" Both statements imply that the speaker gives a polite offer to the listener. The speaker wishes for the light to be on, but will not push the matter, if the listener doesn't want it.

          On the other hand, "Can I turn on the light?" translated back to Japanese would be something like "電気をつけたいけどいいですか". Both statements imply that the speaker wants the light to be on, and politely urges the listener to give in to this request. If the listener refuses, the speaker is likely to further press the matter.


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rain0001

          電源をONにするという意味で、 Can I close the electricity circuit? Is this correct?


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rk5I3

          I'm not native English speaker, but maybe you would say "Can I switch the electricity on?" (for a whole house or a room) or "Can I switch it on?" for a machine, such as a computer.


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

          I wrote "Shall I" and it wasn't correct. :( but I'm not a native English speaker


          https://www.duolingo.com/profile/margaret711539

          How about shall I?


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

          Shall I turn on the light is more like 電気をつけてましょうか? More like suggesting that I turn on the light than asking permission. ~ていいですか? or ~てもいいですか? is the best way to ask for permission to do something.


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

          Is the translation "Is it okay to turn on the lights?" not right?


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

          Wouldn't "Can i turn on A light" be the same?


          [deactivated user]

            more likely "can i turn on a lamp", as in there are many lamps in the room, but when talking about "light" more than likely it's going to be one type of "the light" that will light up the room (so both speaker and listener are thinking about the same kind of light) as opposed to other types of light, like "a traffic light".


            https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tadpole17

            I put "Is it okay to turn on the lights?" - rejected!


            https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Eyebrows7

            Is it incorrect to translate this as "Are you turning on the light?"


            https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John863934

            Yes, that would be 点けていますか


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

            I had Can you turn on the light? which was marked wrong. Is いいですか always "Can I"?


            https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John863934

            Literally 'is it good to', so "may I" is the best translation.


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

            Whats the deal with か over here?


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

            So could I say something like: これは食べいいですか? For "can i eat this?"


            https://www.duolingo.com/profile/A.Lias

            I think so, except, 食べる needs to be in て-form. これは食べいいですか?


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

            Fun fact: if you check the hint for 気 standalone, it will translate 気おつけて as "take care", which is also correct.


            https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rk5I3

            I'm not a native, but should "Do you mind if I turn on the light?" be correct? Duo didn't accept it.


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

            "Is it okay if I turn on a light?" was my initial thought to the translation. Ii desu ka?


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

            "Can I" for permission is slang. Common usage does not make it correct. The default translation at the top of this page should be "May I..." as there is no good reason to promote bad English.

            I'm sorry, but every time I asked "Can I...?" as a child, my mother would say "You can, I don't know if you may." and so now I have to do the same to other people. After all, if you allow slang to go unchecked, you'll wind up with an entirely different language. And we wouldn't want that, would we? BC I R Pedant an bad gramer make PEdant ANgRY.!


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

            What, then, does make it correct? Would it only be correct if your mother said it? I'm afraid we have no Academie Francaise to set down standards for the language as the French do, which has actually made English quite a flexible and versatile, if quite heterogeneous, language. If you do not want your language changing, I would suggest Icelandic. English does change, and quite rapidly. Look at any early twentieth century dictionary of slang and you will see many words that your mother accepted as standard.


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

            That entire second paragraph was to point out my flawed reasoning in the first paragraph. I called myself a pedant. While I FEEL that "Can I..." for permission is wrong, as that is what was forced down my throat, and I WANT to be High Chancellor of the Grammar Nazi Party, I CANNOT justify my position, and so I am FORCED TO laugh at myself and use LOTS of CAPS for no reason.

            But it really should be "May I..." as the default with "Can I..." as not being counted wrong.

            Yours truly, High Chancellor Raum Dellamorte, First of His Name, and Enabler of Dragons.

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