The direct translation is "sir, you use the telephone?" It should be "Señor , està usando el teléfono?" Which is more of a correct translation
Thank you--that is what I thought, that it should be "usando" for the English word "use." English words ending in "--ing" are called the "Present Progressive" or "Present Continuous" and refer to action happening now. In the Present Progressive tense, Spanish verbs ending in "ar" will end in "--ando"; verbs ending in "er" or "ir" end in "iendo." Here's a site that gives a good explanation of the tense and their endings: https://www.spanishdict.com/guide/spanish-present-progressive-forms
Usar: to use ;congugations; Yo "USO" ; Tú "USAS"; Él/ Ella/ Usted "USA"; Nosotros "USAMOS"; Vosotros "USÁIS"; Éllos/ Ellas/ Ustedes "USAN";
Right but in this sentence, why is it not the Tu form of the verb, "Usas"? "Usa" indicates he's referring to him in third-party but he's talking directly to him (I.e. you)?
You are right that 'Usa' is third person singular form but same form is also Usted form along with Él and Ella form.
Usted form of verb is used for formal conversations. Here word señor means this is formal conversation.
'Usas' can be used in non formal conversations with our friends or family members.
How important is the correct use of formal and informal in Spanish? Would a native who is a stranger to me be insulted if addressed by the informal form, either in error or not? Are they very strict about it?
A Spanish speaking friend of mine did say that some people will take the incorrect use of Formal and Informal as insulting. However if the person knows that you are not fluent in Spanish they will understand. If they think you spoke that way on purpose, they will be offended.
I can imagine certain situations where it could be used as an insult but I think more of us learning Spanish are more unsure of whether we can use the informal forms with people we just recently met and hope to be friends with.
And I wonder how that varies from place to place. I imagine that much like the US and England are separated by a common language, probably Spain and Argentina are as well.
My aunt would highly disapprove. If you don't know, go with the formal when out in the real world. If you're practicing here in DL, go with the obvious; if they don't use "sir" or "ma'am", then you go with the casual "tu".
How do you know to put the verb before usted? Necesita comes before but usa comes after.
It can also be in simple present "Sir, do you use the telephone?"
the given translation has an alternative of "are you using the telephone sir?" but is not accepted as a correct answer
"Usa" is the conjugated version of the verb 'Usar', which means "to use". "Usted usa el telefono" directly translates to 'You use the telephone'. But because there are question marks, we change the sentence to "ARE you using the telephone?".
Why is it usa. I am confused about what you use for masculine and feminine with verbs and nouns and how does this relate. Sorry it does not make sense to me
Verbs aren't feminine or masculine. The "a" and "o" endings are due to the conjugation of the verb e.g. I use "uso" vs Sir uses "usa"
We need more info and real instruction. And responses to issue. My opinion only. Any one now of any other good language learning programs ???
Spanish has two forms of the second person, you. There is an informal 'you' and a formal 'you'. When the formal 'you' is used, like in this sentence, the verb is conjugated just like it is for the third person (he/she/it). The use of 'senor' (with a tilde on the n - can't do it with this keyboard!), which means 'sir', clues you in that the formal 'you' is being used.
Uso is used with the pronoun yo, usas with tù, and usa with él, ella and usted. Note that the endings here have nothing to do with gender; only are they dependent on the pronoun.
I don't understand how and when to use these words, usa asas and usted.
how difficult in Spanish. normally anything ending in an "o" is normally masculine and un or el but in this case not 'uno' as one would imagine 'una' which sounds feminine
how do we know where in the sentence we should use "usted"? is it before or after verbs?
Verbs are not gender specific. So there is no "male version " of Usar(to use)
Uso = I use (both male and female)
Usa = he/she uses
Usas = you use (informal/Sing)
Just realizing that if i knew señora meant an elderly woman as well i should have know, guess it sort of got me by surprise because the first thing that came to mind was that mujer means woman and not señora as well at the time. Just one of those things. Just have to be alert