"Su madre no es muy simpática."
Translation:His mother is not very nice.
Yes. The su before madre can mean his, her, your (usted and ustedes), and their mother.
The way Spanish works in a conversation is that who is being talked about is named and mutually understood at the onset, and from then on pronouns are exclusively used to refer to the person, unlike in English where the name of the person can be repeated over and over.
Moreover, the pronouns are even generally dropped.
This is very similar to Romanian, my language ! Mama sa nu este foarte simpatică ! And people say we are not Latin enough :D
The choices are restrictive given the lack of context w/ such a short sentence. He/she/their should all be presented as options, given the ambiguity.
If one of those is not accepted when you are typing it in instead of choosing, then you could report it as correct. Even "your" works for "su" as the form for "usted" or "ustedes", but wouldn't that be so rude?
The app is not accepting correct answers. I've tried pasting exactly what their solution is, and it still breaks. It's the last question and I can't complete the session.
Odd. I typed in "your mom is not very nice" and that worked just fine.
You can try reporting it as yet another possible correct translation for them to add to their database.
If su can mean your or his, how do you differentiate? Is it just total context? In this example seems could cause big problems!!
It means "your" in case you are speaking formally by using "señor", "usted" etc. otherwise it's always "his/her". I hope that helps.
Not always and this sentence could cause big problems! Remember that in Latin America “Usted” forms are the preferred forms and are not just used formally. Context is very important. https://www.thoughtco.com/possessive-adjectives-short-form-3079109
Yes, I think I would duck after saying this. Perhaps the other person just said something worse about his own mother and I was trying to make it not as bad? No, I would never do this.