Why is 〇 used instead of 零 in time lessons?

Hi everyone,

I noticed that in the time lessons in Chinese the character for 0 appears to be 〇 instead of 零. This is confusing because in the notes it lists the character as 零, and when I click the 〇 character in lessons, it does not have a sound (as well as when the sentence is read) which tends to throw me off a lot. Is there a way to fix this issue? I have tried reporting it, but I haven't received any replies from the Duolingo team or noticed any changes made to this feature.

Anyway, let me know what you think in the comments!

Edit: Please add audio if possible as it gets really annoying to listen to the breaks in the speech and it is unnatural as well.


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May 7, 2018


When signing dates in certain situations, such as on announcements or in letters, 〇 (different than O) is used instead of 零 in the year, e.g. 二〇一八年五月八日 for today's date (May 8, 2018). Notice that the date is written as said, "erlingyiba nian, wu yue, ba ri/hao" (though you would generally write 日 here even if reading as 号) and not as “两千一百十八”! When typing, 〇 can be found under "ling".

On the difference in usage between 0, 零 and 〇:

May 7, 2018

Thank you so much. I meant to type 〇, but could not find the character to copy and paste anywhere because I had to do 3 more lessons to get back to the lesson where I saw it, so I ended up typing O. I will edit the post to change this.

May 7, 2018
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I guess it is mostly because some contributors think 〇 is simpler and looks more harmonious with other number characters. But in mainland China, 零 is usually the formal written form of zero unless otherwise specified. The lack of good font support in the past and missing audio of 〇 also tells us 〇 is not a commonly used character by the government of PRC. Even today 〇 is still not included in the sets of common characters.

May 10, 2018
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