"You never listen to me."
Translation:Usted nunca me escucha.
There's nothing in the sentence saying "you don't know them". And to clarify about "tu", it is also used between children and from an adult referring to a child, even if you don't know them. Usted is used with adults that you don't know. (Although these days, tu is fairly common in some countries in casual personal interactions even between adults who don't know each other, such as in stores or casual restaurants.)
Usted can be used with someone you know well--a parent, for example, in some places. Or a boss (not wise, but it happens).
There's no point trying to overanalyze the context of these sentences. Duolingo uses simple clues if it wants you to use one kind of "you" (addressing someone as "Señor", for example). Otherwise, you should be able to (and generally can) use any of them.
As Bishop6 has said on this page, if you want us to explain why your response was not accepted, you need to put your exact, entire sentence here. Otherwise, we have no way to tell what else might be wrong.
Others here have commented that "Tú nunca me escuchas" was accepted.
Ha! Bishop6 was also answering this while I was composing my answer referencing an earlier answer of his!
First -- you can't "connect" the direct object pronoun unless you are using the infinitive (to listen) or the participle (listening) of the verb.
Second -- the "tú" form (informal) is "escuchas"; you used "escucha" which is the Usted form.
You could say "Tú nunca me escuchas" or "Usted nunca me escucha".
In Spanish the personal object pronouns (like object and direct object) are generally placed directly before the verb, not after. The other proper placement for them would be directly attached to an infinitive verb (such as escucharme or after the gerundio form (escuchandome).
English doesn't have an explicit formal and informal "you" any more, although hundreds of years ago it did. It also doesn't have a separate singular and plural "you" any more ("you" used to be the plural as well as the formal, and "thou" was the informal singular, but we got rid of "thou" except in some remote parts of northern England, or among groups like the Quakers in the US). If you've only spoken English all your life, I can understand that it might be confusing at first.
In many European languages such as German, French, and Spanish, you have one type of "you" that you use with friends, family, and people younger than you ("informal") and one type of "you" that use with adult strangers, government officials, police, your boss at work, and so on ("formal"). In Spanish the informal "you" is "tú" and the formal is usted. For example, if you call a police officer in Mexico or Spain tú, it does not show proper respect to them and can get you in trouble! It can get more tricky because the formal and informal use different verb forms as well. The only real way to handle it is to learn both of them, kind of like learning the difference between "I" and "he" in English (like we say "I walk" but we say "he walks" -- the verb changes with the subject).
As for when to use them on the site, generally Duo will drop a hint that they want the formal (usted) by using a keyword in the sentence like "sir" or "ma'am".
And as for ustedes, at this point you can safely just consider that the "plural you". If the "you" that you are referring to is more than one person, then ustedes is the right pronoun. (And again, the verb will be different from the other two "you") verbs.
"Me escucha" is the él/ella/usted form of the present tense, and it means "he/she/you (formal) listen(s)".
"Escúchame" is the affirmative imperative for tú, so it's the command "Listen to me".
See https://www.spanishdict.com/conjugate/escuchar for all the conjugations.
And see https://www.gymglish.com/en/hotel-borbollon/spanish-grammar/imperative-with-direct-and-indirect-object-pronouns for information about how to use the imperative, and where the object pronouns go.
It's probably correcting you due to the placement of the adverb nunca:
"Me" in this case is the same as in English -- it means "me", as in "You never listen to me". "Me" is the person that the subject (Usted) is listening to, therefore it's the "direct object" of the sentence.
In English we put "to me" after the verb "listen" to show who the person is listening to (or not). In Spanish we put "me" before the verb instead.
If I wanted to switch it around and say "I never listen to you", it would be "Yo nunca te escucho". Note in this case that "you" (te) is again before the verb, but the subject is now "I" (Yo) and the verb changes to fit it.
Does that help?
One, the verb escuchar already means "to listen to", making the "a" redundant. No me escuchas (You don't listen to me), Escucho la musica (I listen to the music), Él escucha la maestra (He listens to the teacher).
Two, any time you use a preposition (like a) you have to use the right pronoun - in this case it would be mi. (For example, in the sentence, A mi me gusta la nieve -- I like snow).
Well yes, that unchanged form (the infinitive) includes the "to" in front, but all the forms contain it implied afterward. So the verb escuchar means "to listen to", and yo escucho means "I listen to..." Some verbs in Spanish contain "implied" prepositions when translated into English like this.
For example, esperar means "to wait for". So you'd say "Él espera un autobús (He waits for a bus) and not "Él espera por un autobús (because the "por" is redundant).
(Just to be fair, there are cases where escuchar doesn't strictly include the following "to" but you probably shouldn't worry about that just now.)
Tú no me escuchas is personal/informal.
Usted no me escucha is formal.
It matters when addressing people in Spanish-speaking countries. Many have gone the route that informal is used a lot more often than it used to be. However, it's still important to know the formal forms because you don't want to use informal in a job interview or when speaking with police or other government officials, for example.
It's certainly possible. For example, an employee explaining to his boss that this is the third time things have gone wrong because the boss never listens to his recommendations. The employee would still use the usted because of the boss/employee relationship, even if they are criticizing him.
What your friend taught you ("escuchame") is not bad grammar, but it is the imperative (command) form of escuchar. It literally is demanding "Listen to me!" You can put the pronoun after the verb in a command like this.
But that's not what this sentence says. In a declarative sentence (stating a fact) the "me" needs to go before the conjugated verb (me escucha) and not after.
Since you used the usted form of the verb, escucha, Duolingo assumed that you meant to use usted as the subject of the sentence. It didn't know that you meant to use tú but got the verb wrong.
Duolingo doesn't make complicated judgments about whether you know someone well enough to use tú. If there is no obvious context (like calling someone "Señor"), it accepts both the formal and familiar forms of "you" (and also both singular and plural).