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differences between German and Turkish "corrections" by Duolingo

As I attempt to brush up on my German, I'm noticing how much harsher the German Duolingo is about spelling corrections as compared to the Turkish. I make spelling errors / mistype all the time. But whereas the Turkish seems to let tiny mistakes go (choosing the wrong vowel), the German slaps my hand for making mistakes in English (I mistyped "two" as "to" this morning because i wasn't paying attention). Plus, I often, and always have (i've spoken German for 40 years albeit not fluently), forget the gender of nouns. I suppose Germans are more uptight -- and would be aghast at my forgetting that Ball is masculine and not neuter, but i don't really care. LOL

That is to say, Turkish is so much more fun!

And is this about cultural differences? Are Turks less punitive than Germans?

July 18, 2015



First of all, i don't speak German, so can't compare the two. I know a bit French, so i know how to handle the grammatical gender. you don't have that here in Turkey so that is a plus. Turkish people (including myself), we always stand in awe when a foreigner speaks (or tries to speak) Turkish with us. we are not punitive at all, in fact i wish that Turkish people were more protective about our language.. so many Turkish people make mistakes (mainly when writing, not speaking) given that you were not born here in Turkey, i'd say you are good to go :)


You probably already know that some words change their meaning completely based on the gender (der/die See is definitely one, and I think der/die Leiter is another) - that could be a reason why German Duo is hard on gender.


but to be punitive when i make a typo in my native language? it just seems a bit excessive. i know the difference between to, too, and two, but typos happen.


I think that maybe they aren't that punitive if it's a simple spelling mistake. But if you end up typing something that is actually a completely different word (e.g. to vs. two), then it would change the meaning of the sentence, so it's important to let people know about the difference and thus they're a little bit stricter about these types of mistkes. Being German, I would say people here are always proud to see that someone would make the effort to learn our language. We know it's not easy, so I think most Germans are very understanding if someone confuses the gender of something or forgets the correct ending of an adjective or whatever. It doesn't matter, in most cases we will still understand what you're trying to say. However, if you make these types of mistakes, people will certainly know you're not a native speaker, but it's up to you to decide if that bothers you or not.


German is far easier than Turkish or Russian, at least for a native speaker of English. I note that you mistyped "mistakes" as "mistkes" -- that would be a big no-no for the German Duolingo. BUZZZZ!

In English, the words "too" "two" and "to" are spelled differently, but in spoken language there is absolutely no difference; hence the frequency of the error. and i think I am more apt to mistype than i would be to mis-write (pen on paper); it is the nature of using a keyboard. I'm sure that I am not alone.

Plus, i think my spelling mistakes in Turkish are actually rather egregious. (which is ok. I am, after all, a rank beginner -- not someone who has spoken it for 40 years.)

And, imho, the German Duolingo could be a bit less harsh. I might stop using it; I have other ways to review German that are more satisfying. Also, if a friend wanted to learn German, I'm not sure I'd recommend Duolingo. It just isn't as much fun as Turkish.

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