"At least the staff speak English."
Translation:Personalen talar åtminstone engelska.
Me too, let's just report it.
Also the suggested translation seems to have a slightly different meaning. It sounds like the staff know(s?) at least one language, which is English, but someone in the crew could probably know more languages.
But i think it's more like someone has been in a not so good place and they are saying that, at least, the staff can speak English.
Shouldn't "personalen talar åtminstone engelska" actually mean "the staff speak at least English"? There's a difference in meaning, because it includes the implication that some of the staff speaks other languages as well, while "at least the staff speak English" does not, and instead implies that there's a different group or different groups of people that do not speak English, for example the other customers.
Normally it always is ok if I use pratar instead of talar (by my experience it is more common)... but not this time. This time it has to be talar and I don't know why.
I also don't understand why it shows me all options for speak (or other words) if just one is really correct in the sentence. Wouldn't it be less confusing for the learners if only the correct one is shown or if only the correct one would be written fat? As a recommendation to use this "fat" word instead of the others.
Maybe it just confuses me.
This sort of thing was covered in an English grammar course I recently took, and if I recall correctly, when the members of a unit of people are being referred to as individuals, instead of the unit of people being referred to as a singular entity, plural form must be used. Here are two example sentences from that course:
"Our team is the best!"
"Our team were wearing new jerseys."
That's really interesting. It's treated as a singular in German (my mother tongue) as well and I constantly have to correct it in students' German essays.
It makes me wonder, though, why duolingo uses the British version, seeing how many bickering posts there are in lots of SDs about the fact that the course is American English - Swedish.
I'm an American. I would never say "The police is looking for him." That would sound EXTREMELY UNEDUCATED, and in fact would be. Americans also say "The police are...".
And yes, you are correct in suggesting that an American would generally not say "The government are" or "My family are."
I checked quite a few grammars on this, and almost all suggested that "police" is a plurale tantum, a word with no singular form (even though it doesn't end in an "s"). The words "government" and "family" are not examples of a plurale tantum.
"In addition, some English nouns are plural but do not have an ‘s’ at the end and may, therefore, easily be confused with singular nouns. For that reason, it needs to be taken into account that these nouns always require verbs in the plural. Compare the following usage:
Some words give the impression of being singular, but they are used like plural nouns and, consequently, also with plural verbs: police: “The police are already here.” Not: “The police is …” Information: If you refer to a single police officer, it is possible to use ‘policeman’, for example: “The girl is talking to the policeman.”
In Swedish, personal is an uncountable en-noun.
However, if there is a need to speak about exactly one individual staff member, en personal can be used. If used like this, the plural is the same; två personal. This usage of the word might be common in staff managemant work, but very uncommon outside of that world.