"Ça ne sert à rien de discuter avec elle."

Translation:It is useless to talk with her.

November 21, 2014

79 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Gori16

it is useless to argue with Duo

March 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AliDadban

What's wrong with "It is useless to talk to her"?

January 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Baaaaalint

I have the same question - and I have no idea...

March 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51

I'd say that that is more of a paraphrase rather than a translation. The basic idea comes across, but "useless" and "serves nothing" can be used with rather different meanings, providing alternate ways of focusing. I'd say you would need a good contextual reason for "useless" in a real-life translation.

March 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Baaaaalint

thanks, but the question concerns using 'talk with' vs. 'talk to' (useless is the translation duo gives as correct)

March 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/AliDadban

Generally speaking they are the same. Slight difference: talking to can mean to talk unilaterally to someone; or reprimanding. talking with is more about a conversation. See here. Maybe that's what Duo wanted.

March 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/AliDadban

Frenchman here. Talking about = parler de. Talking to is roughly= parler à. Talking with = parler avec or discuter avec. "You talkin' to me?" = C'est à moi que tu parles?

March 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Baaaaalint

many thanks for the clarification

March 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51

Quite right, a different issue; sorry. And quite right about the to/with difference also. My thought would be that the French might use "parler à" instead of "discuter avec" to express "talking to". And it might be "discuter d'elle" to mean "talking about". I'm not a native speaker though, and not 100% sure.

March 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Marie282520

That really how it would be said. Nice streak.

May 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/chromagirly

I said, "It's not useful to discuss anything with her." I thought their use of "rien" might indicate "not anything" or "nothing," but this was not acceptable. Thoughts?

January 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/bgm.araujo

"servir à rien" is an expression that means "be useless"

March 26, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/npweston

Rien here goes with sert - "it achieves nothing".

February 12, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Penny1945

I accept that this is the actual translation of the french to the english, it just is not something that a native english speaker would say, they would say "It is useless to discuss anything with her". As a native english speaker it doesn't worry me at all, I just lose a heart, but for the students doing these exercises and who are not native english speakers it is actually providing them with translations that would not be accepted in conversation by native english speakers.

January 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/GregHullender

This really means "It is no use arguing with her" and Duolingo does accept that. This is "argue" in the constructive sense. You use se disputer for quarrels, but, of course, those are of no use by definition.

March 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/zarniwoop890

Why is "it is useless to discuss this with her" wrong?

Seriously, I am being driven to distraction by the inconsistencies in these later stages. If the next few lessons don't improve I think I'm going to stop using Duolingo.

December 9, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Marie282520

Chocolate often helps.

May 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/bgm.araujo

There's no "this" (ça, cela) in the sentence!

March 26, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/mahankr

So if I wanted to say, "It's useless to ever talk to her about anything," would it be "Ça ne sert à rien de jamais rien discuter avec elle?"

December 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AliDadban

We'd say "ça ne sert à rien de lui parler de quoi que ce soit"

March 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/mahankr

Merci beaucoup!

March 3, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/lanny.ripple

Ok. Deconstructing this.

  • It serves nothing...
  • It serves nothing to talk to her...
  • It serves nothing to talk to her about what [about whatever] that
  • It serves nothing to talk to her about whatever that this/that is. ; Where [this/that is] is in the subjunctive.

Did I break that down correctly? The "soit" was tough. Is it the subjective third-person singular être?

I have never seen "de quoi" before. From the couple of dictionaries I've hit it seems to be deep magic and barely translatable. Anyone care to shine a light on it so readers can try and build some intuition about it?

Thanks for making me have to think. :)

April 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AliDadban

quoi que ce soit means whatever or anything

April 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/malutz1

I said that "it doesn't do any good to talk with her" and it was not accepted. Does anyone know why not? That means pretty much the exact same thing as the provided answer "It is useless to talk with her" and seems like a more direct translation

November 28, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/D3XT3RY0NuT

Duolingo gave me "It serves nothing to talk with her.". It shoudn't be "It serves to nothing to talk with her."?

October 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MarkHolden8

Actually, the literally correct translation should be "it serves no purpose to talk with her". I realise that this is slightly old english, but since it is technically correct, it should be accepted.

October 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Docmaker

Why is "rien" not translated as "anything."

April 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

It's part of "ne sert à rien" - literally, "does not serve to anything", but idiomatically, "there's no point, it's useless".

May 26, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/B.D.R.

What's wrong with "It is no use to discuss with her" ?

July 26, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1721

It is not natural English since "discuss" needs an object here. You could say "It's no use discussing it with her" or "It's pointless/useless to argue/speak/talk/debate with her".

January 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/erikjansen91

I believe I tried "It is no use to argue with her" and that was marked wrong...

November 20, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/altajr

Why is "ça" used and not ce?

December 18, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1721

"Ce" is a demonstrative adjective. Ça is an indefinite pronoun (along with cela/ceci, etc).

January 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/ZuMako8_Momo

Tell me about it... -o-

June 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/peterschei2

In haste, I translated: It is useless to talk to her. In this context in American English, 'to her' or 'with her' mean exactly to the same thing. "to her" should be accepted as correct.

October 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/sdr51

Well, it depends. Sure, they are often used interchangeably. But on the other hand, talking to someone is just that - you are the talker, and nothing more is implied, about either talking or listening. Talking with someone, however, implies a mutuality; any activity "with" someone is a shared action or interaction. So it can be truly said, if one needs close precision of meaning in the context of using this construct, that "with" is the better choice in English for matching it.

October 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/AliDadban

I posted a couple of comments on this specific question. You can scroll down to see them.

October 10, 2016

[deactivated user]

    Why not "c'est"?

    October 21, 2016

    https://www.duolingo.com/ZuMako8_Momo

    Because it is negative in this sentence. When it is negative, it becomes « Ce n'est pas ». The other reason is that the verb in this sentence is not « est »; it is « sert ».

    October 21, 2016

    [deactivated user]

      Thank you ZuMako8_Momo.

      October 22, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/ZuMako8_Momo

      De rien

      October 22, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/cecilchase

      What is wrong with, "It is serving nothing to discuss with her "?

      December 9, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/ZuMako8_Momo

      That is a bit awkward in American English

      December 10, 2016

      https://www.duolingo.com/yab401

      is it wrong to translate the sentnece to: "it is useless to argue with her"?

      January 24, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/Lola752890

      It is not good to talk with her should also be acceptable

      June 14, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/mizinamo

      No; that means something else.

      It's no good talking to her = it is useless/pointless to try to do so; talking to her will not have any results.

      It's not good to talk to her = talking to her is not a good thing to do, perhaps even a bad thing to do.

      "bad" is not the same as "useless".

      June 14, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/reichdalmeida1

      "It's no use ARGUING with her" . Not accepted though it might be the best translation for this phrase which can expressed in several (correct ) ways.
      "It's no use ARGUING with her" is completely correct. The acceptance is not relevant.

      July 8, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/reichdalmeida1

      "Discuter" may be transitive or intransitive in French (not connected to a specific object) as opposed to English where is usually assumed as transitive. In this context, however, the same message is conveyed by " talking with her "and "talking to her" (DL's wrong).

      July 8, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/wsteffen1

      there is a direct object pronoun (complément objet direct) missing in the french sentence, if duolingo wants it to be translated as "it's no use to discuss IT with her.

      July 17, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/ChrisJudge1

      Why not "It serves no purpose to converse with her" ?

      July 25, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/gaiagoddess

      Why is "Ca" not translated as 'That"?

      July 30, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/gaiagoddess

      Still waiting for help on this today.

      July 21, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/AliDadban

      You wouldn't say That is useless to talk to her in English.

      July 23, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/SeanMeaneyPL

      "It does no good talking to her" was rejected. Sometimes, Duo, you really just don't "get" it.

      August 3, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/IvanEb

      "It's pointless to discuss with her". Why is that wrong?

      August 15, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/Pigslew

      It's not, just like my "It's pointless discussing with her" which was not accepted. Reported of course.

      November 8, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/SeanMeaneyPL

      It does no good talking to her uses "does", which gives some action or movement to the verb, and (I thought) matches the movement implied in sert. Better that "is" in my view. But I imagine I have been outlingoed once again. I forgot Duo's transatlantic penchant for talking WITH instead of talking TO. Grrr. And all right, it does say discuter avec.

      October 31, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/reichdalmeida1

      "It is worthless to talk with her" dubbed as wrong is probably wrong only for Duolingo. It's precisely the same.

      November 8, 2017

      https://www.duolingo.com/Joe263957

      it is very hard sometimes to discern what this woman is saying. I speak pretty good French, but am unable at times to figure out her words.

      January 21, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/Randy286127

      I'm starting with a basic question - what is the infinitive from which sert is conjugated? I've never encountered it that I can recall.

      March 7, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/JBOXY

      Servir, meaning to serve

      March 7, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/ThomasJohnMcHarg
      <pre> 'Useless to talk to her' seem more natural </pre>
      August 19, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/poubelledelangue

      Why is "ça" used here instead of "il"? Isn't "il" used for dummy subjects like this (eg. « il est bon de louer Dieu»)?

      August 24, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/RfQxZNDE

      It does no good to talk to her. Not with her. At least in English. Or perhaps it serves no purpose to talk to her. If one wants the "with" in English then it would be "to argue with her," which is what I had thought initially since discuter can also mean to debate or argue. Or to have a discussion with her. Prepositions are the most confusing part of any language!

      August 26, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/BelyewNewman

      I was curious if "It is pointless to talk with her" would be accepted and so decided to try it. I was happy to discover that was an acceptable answer :)

      September 20, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/Pigslew

      Strange when "it's pointless discussing with her" was not accepted!

      November 8, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/Esther485620

      Why not ' it doesn't make sense to talk ' to her

      October 19, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/D3XT3RY0NuT

      It makes sense to me. :)

      October 19, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/Esther485620

      Why not 'it doesn't make sense to talk to her'?

      October 19, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/KroombitTinker

      "There is no point in discussing that with her" was incorrect so DL suggested "There is no point in discussing it with her". Is the owl female?

      October 21, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/Pigslew

      "It's useless discussing with her" still not allowed Nov. 2018! Where are you Sitesurf or n6zs?

      November 8, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/gstIngigst

      I wrote 'no use' instead of 'useless' but that wasn't accepted. Can anyone explain why?

      December 1, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/Beth434495

      I hate this exercise more than possibly any other in Duolingo. I understand the sentiment and would know what someone meant if they said it to me. But it usually takes multiple tries to get an english translation that DL will accept. The English translation that’s shown isn’t anything I would naturally say, but similar sentiments aren’t accepted.

      December 18, 2018

      https://www.duolingo.com/Sonorus702246

      Why not "It does no good to discuss with her"?

      February 13, 2019

      https://www.duolingo.com/Andrey872035

      "It is useless to argue with her" would be more appropriate translation.

      February 16, 2019

      https://www.duolingo.com/Harman01

      'Futile to talk with her." was marked wrong

      April 4, 2019

      https://www.duolingo.com/Nick229163

      Because discuss needs an object in English, but discuter doesn't, i think thst DL oight to accept There is no point discussing it with her. The it is implied.

      April 24, 2019

      https://www.duolingo.com/Lee63091

      'there is no point of discussing with her'

      May 11, 2019

      https://www.duolingo.com/denden798

      It is useless works but it is pointless doesnt work?

      July 18, 2019
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