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Thread: talking to

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    talking to

    Please, teachers, are these sentences right? Do they have the same meaning?

    You need to find out who she talks to.
    You need to find out who she has been talking to.

    Do you know who she talks to?
    Do you know who she has been talking to?


    Thank you very much

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    Re: talking to

    Quote Originally Posted by marciobarbalho View Post
    Please, teachers, are these sentences right? Do they have the same meaning?

    You need to find out who she talks to.
    You need to find out who she has been talking to.

    Do you know who she talks to?
    Do you know who she has been talking to?


    Thank you very much
    The second sentence in each pair is the more correct.
    To be strictly correct, they should be -
    "You need to find out to whom she has been talking."
    "Do you know to whom she has been talking?"
    However, in everyday conversation your original second sentences would be more usual and would sound less formal.

    Buggles (not a teacher)

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    Re: talking to

    Ok, buggles, however I can't see 'who' as an object.

    So, for example, whether someone is on a military operation, an investigation or something similar, then the boss says to his/her employee who has been investigating someone else's life for some years.

    Could he/she say...

    You need to find out who she talks to.
    You need to find out who she has been talking to.
    You need to find out who she is talking to.

    Question is, I can't see any difference between these sentences in this context described above, so, do they really have the same meaning?

    Thank you very much

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    Re: talking to

    Quote Originally Posted by marciobarbalho View Post
    Ok, buggles, however I can't see 'who' as an object.

    So, for example, whether someone is on a military operation, an investigation or something similar, then the boss says to his/her employee who has been investigating someone else's life for some years.

    Could he/she say...

    You need to find out who she talks to.
    You need to find out who she has been talking to.
    You need to find out who she is talking to.

    Question is, I can't see any difference between these sentences in this context described above, so, do they really have the same meaning?

    Thank you very much

    Remember, I can only comment as a native speaker and not as a teacher, but -
    Each sentence is different from the others in a subtle way
    "......who she talks to" covers her immediate associates like family, friends and work colleagues - the people she talks to all the time.
    "......who she has been talking to" would apply to anyone with whom she's been in close contact in the recent past. e.g. suspected spies etc.
    "......who she is talking to" is similar to "been talking to" and probably refers to "shady characters" with whom she's conversing at the present.
    These interpretations are pretty subjective and others might give you a better explanation, but that's what they mean to me.

    As for "with whom", I was taught never to end a sentence with a preposition (e.g. to) and that who becomes whom in the type of sentences you've described.
    Maybe a teacher can provide you with a more detailed explanation.

    Cheers

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