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  1. #1
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    Default "You are different from everyone else"

    This is a term I have heard people use in various situations such as gatherings, discussion groups, social events etc. I have never been quite
    certain, what it actually means: is it a compliment, or a criticism?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    It depends entirely upon context. Examples:
    .
    You are different from everyone else. You don't act weird like so many people here. You act normal.

    You are different from everyone else. Everybody else knows what they are doing. You don't have a clue.


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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    Thank you RonBee,

    quite often no context is given - it may be an elusive conclusion of a difference in opinion or basic philisophy, without giving any reference to the nature of being "different". Since this phrase seems to be on the rise I was just wondering, if it's a camouflaged way of being critical?

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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    There is always context. What the statement means has to depend on the situation. Example:
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    A: You have some strange views. You are different from everybody else. (I agree with them. I don't agree with you.)

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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    Thanks, RonBee,

    I agree that there is always context, but it may not be revealed (like in your example). Since majority opinion usually outweighs individual opinion it might be safe to consider this kind of remark a critical one without calling a spade a spade?

    I have noticed a trend in the usage of the English language to choose phrases which leave a lot of room for interpretation and permits the speaker to "weasle" out of confrontation by declaring it was meant to be
    a compliment. Quite interesting - reminds me of shadow boxing.

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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    There is context in addition to the words used. A person can usually tell from such context (body language, intonation, etc.) how a remark is intended. If there is some doubt on the part of the listener that person can always ask for clarification. For example: "Was that meant as a compliment?" Or: "Was that meant as an insult?"



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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    The coinage of "different" as such seems to be non-descriptive unless specified to comparison. Different from what? Sorry to be so persistent - maybe that's why get the "different" treatment? I am not alarmed, I am rather curious by nature.

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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    If somebody is different from somebody else it means that person is not the same as that other person in some way worth remarking about.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: "You are different from everyone else"

    A common mistake in usage is to say "different than". Maybe you already knew that. "Than" is actually probably more common now that "from".
    Linguist Farmer

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