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  5. "Sie sind die Arbeitgeberinne…

"Sie sind die Arbeitgeberinnen!"

Translation:They are the employers!

August 18, 2013

52 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Siebenundzwanzig

Sorry, but that's just fun to say. :D German must have awesome rap.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AdamdeAnda

Check out Traum by Cro


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/borQhuester

Spass! I think DL should include videos/songs like this as part of the 'Immersion" section! Link to video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8WQMBv2deYQ and the lyrics (with translation): http://lyricstranslate.com/en/traum-dream.html


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Levend0

Hoho wow awesome song. Thanks! :D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/foloo

German spelling bees must be fun to watch.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/deepfreeze007

Fortunately German is an extremely phonetic language, so long as you know the alphabet.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NaomiWeissEs

Spelling bees are mainly an English thing (And mainly American at that). English spelling doesn't match the pronunciation a lot of the time. There is no single way to pronounce each letter or grouping of letters. This isn't the case for most other languages.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marnyg

Der Arbeitgeber / Die Arbeitgeber - Die Arbeitgeberin / Die Arbeitgeberinnen


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Olivia626052

But what if my employers are a man and a woman? What do I say? Can I still say "Sie sind" or do I have to break it up and point to them individually? That's annoying.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rulevi

Is "You[plural] are the employers" correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/deepfreeze007

Look at "Arbeitgeberinnen" and you see that it is plural, so the only way to use "Sie" here is for it to be "They".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

Bravo, deepfreeze007! You are exactly right: the use of Arbeitgeberinnen does indeed mean that Sie must have the plural meaning in order for the noun/pronoun pair to match in number.

However, the polite/formal form of you (Sie) is used for both singular AND plural. I am amending my answer just above. Still, I applaud your catching that. Great attention to detail and forced me to review, learn, & clarify. Thank you.

See http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Sie


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

Capitalization of the Sie at the beginning of the sentence makes this confusing.

"Sie sind . . . " is either:

  • "You [formal/polite singular or formal] are . . . " OR
  • "They [plural] are . . . "
  • "She is . . . " would be Sie ist . . . , whereas
  • "You [plural] are . . . " would be Ihr seid . . . , which is just as 4of92000 wrote and I think SteamWing agreed with. (The order of SteamWing's post vis-a-vis 4of92000 seems to be alternating, which is throwing things off.)

Edit 2014-07-31: After deepfreeze007 noted that Arbeitbegerinnen is plural, I reviewed usage notes re Sie and saw that it is used not only for the polite/formal form of a single "you", but also as the polite/formal form of a plural "you". The upshot is that rulevi was correct: "You [plural] are the employers." is a valid translation.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/4of92000

No, that would be "ihr seid", if I'm not mistaken.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

"Ihr seid . . . " for the informal/familiar plural second person.

"Sie sind . . . " for the formal/polite second person, either plural or single, or for the third person plural.

"Er/Sie/Es ist . . . " for the third person singular (Male/Female/Neuter)

"Du bist . . . " for the second person familiar/informal singular


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/4of92000

I stand corrected. Danke!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pmg1026

I thinks this is the reason why German has an edge over other languages. You can break down big words; here, Arbeit = work and geber = giver == employer. And breaking them down makes it easier to remeber. You can use google translate to do that. Just wanted to share this. Try breaking Sehenswürdigkeiten ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ghoumrassi

So I presume that Arbeitgeberinnen is used to refer to multiple female employers. Out of curiosity, which word would you use for a group of employers of mixed gender?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TobyBartels

So in English we say "user", while in German they say "work-giver".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/steeph

I don't think the word user has any connection to this sentence.

Arbeitgeber/in is employer


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BLPK

you are the bosses was disallowed! Ach!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SteamWing

Arbeitgeber "usually" refers to the company as a whole having employees, not the actual people in the company being bosses of those employees and therefore making employer a better translation. But you are right in it being unclear in what entity it means.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/baer07

Thanks for the clarification :) So in this sentence does it refer to a number of companies??


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SteamWing

You mostly hear the term "der Arbeitgeber", which is masculine. I don't see "Arbeitgeberin" so often, which is feminine, but it makes sense if you don't refer to a unspecific company form, but to "die GmbH", "die AG", "die KG", "die OHG" (some German company forms), which are female.

So, yes, "Arbeitgeberinnen" is the feminine plural and is therefore translated to employerS.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Teacup87

Wait, this really confuses me. Is there any rhyme or reason to which companies are male and which are female?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SteamWing

The company forms follow the rules (and exceptions) of the German gender system like any other noun. The noun of the company forms I named (die Gesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung, die Aktiengesellschaft, die Kommanditgesellschaft, die Offene Handelsgesellschaft) all end with Gesellschaft. Nouns that end with -schaft are usually female. So this has reason when you learned when to use which gender.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

And it should be:

Sie sind . . . is ambiguous. sind is the plural form of "to be", so it indicates/requires a plural subject in the Nominativ case. In the Nominativ, sie is either the third person-plural, or second-person formal/polite.

There's not enough context provided to determine one or the other without the clarification provided by SteamWing; so thank you for that, SteamWing.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/namuu

Die Arbeitegeber sind Freunde , Sie sind die Arbeitgeberinnen. it is same... Arbeitgeber... it is used Palura then why is it have different shaps?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/savourtardis

"Die Arbeitegeber" is the plural of "the [male] employer" (which is the same noun in singular but takes the article "der"), and "die Arbeitgeberinnen" is the plural of "die Arbeitgeberin", "the [female] employer".

Mind, I'm not exactly sure how these are used, though one of the discussions above mentions that if companies are one of the variants of "die Gesellschaft", a feminine word, that might be a reason why they would be discussed as feminine.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/brianduenez

arbeit = work, geberinnen = funders. they are "work funders" hahah German is so funny.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Musicl0ver02

Actually better translation of "geberinnen" would be to give, which would mean that they are work givers


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alexandra69776

arbeitgeberinnen is one long word


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/realmdrakkar

They are the job givers?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LiefOrloth

To me, a native Brit, "work providers" seems a sensible translation but was not accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sumit.hetfield

My way of remembering: Mitarbeiter = mit + arbeiter = with + work => the one with work Arbeitgeber = arbeit + gebe = work + give => the one who gives work ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mmlak

Why not 'they are the bosses'?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

SteamWing discussed this above. But it's probably best to maintain the distinction between "boss", as a manager/supervisor, and "employer", as the person or company who has ultimate authority/responsibility for hiring.

Think of it this way: you and your boss both have the same employer.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AliT.Firef

Hmm. I wouldn't refer to my line manager as my boss. Of course there's a limit, but in CERTAIN contexts at least, 'the bosses' is always used for the people with responsibility for working conditions. BTW if this was discussed above the discussion seems to have been deleted...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

The comments from SteamWing are below now. Lord only knows what algorithm is used to order these discussion pages.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eshan943679

In USA, employer is basically a company, industry, or an organization. It's kind of weird to call a person an employer. We use the term owner or president of the company. So should the translation be "They are the company owners"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/zengator

If one works for a small business--and in the US, about 60 million people do--then it is not unusual to refer to the owner/principal of the firm as "employer". It is a little more detached than just using the employer's personal name, but it does acknowledge that one is not employed by some inhuman entity, but rather by Mr. Foofram or Greg or Mrs. Tillbottom.

Similarly, a maid or nurse would quite likely refer to the person (not some abstract business or household) who employs them as "employer".

Incidentally, an "industry" would not likely be called an employer. "Industries" are a collection of businesses and would only rarely collectively employ someone. Perhaps an industry may employ a spokesman or lobbyist, but even then, it would more likely be a trade association--a legal entity formed by the collective members of the industry--which is the actual employer of that representative.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ashley334002

Feel stupid for asking this but is there a difference between boss and employer? I wrote boss and it was wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PetterBirg

It sounds like a phrase from a song by Kraftwerk.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaLawho

Is'nt employers and bosses the same ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CapnDoug

No. An employer is the one (could be a person or an entity - like a company or a business) who hires and pays you. A boss is the one who tells you what to do.

In some cases they could be the same, but in others not.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AnthonyBlo3

It doesn't matter if I say it right or wrong it still tells me it's wrong.

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