I wonder if "someone" is considered to be a he/she or they?
"Anyone" is they, right?
Indefinite pronouns are singular: s/he
someone, anyone, nobody, everybody, somebody, anybody, each, neither, one, no one, everyone.
All the words listed above refer to one thing. Even words like somebody, everybody, anybody are considered singular because they distinguish one body (e.g., some (one) body, every (one) body; any (one) body, etc.
Normally, the words like someone... take singular verbs... for example... someone needs... BUT someone needs, don't they? In formal speech, we normally use THEY and not he or she... in informal speech there is a tendency to use his/her OR his or her...
I use 'they''in both formal and informal language, but there isn't really a consensus on this- some use 'he or she'and some use 'he', though in British English, think 'they'is winning. There are areas like the law where the only form used is 'he'.
These rules are sometimes ingnored in practice... the writer is most probably unable to tell the difference between he/she OR they.. and they do not go deep into details.. but if you are about to take an exam, it will be taken into account... I am sorry but i might have made a mistake in my previous post... people use THEY in INFORMAL speech, and HE/SHE in Formal one.... :)
I depend a lot on a a linguistic "sense" (I counstruct this notion from norwegian, so you'll just have to adjust if it's not the common expression), and I find it heartening that there's been developed different views upon that. I see the rules are easy to learn and remember (and use). I will probably utilize those for all my future writing. Being one who doesn't have english in any form as my mother tongue, I really don't have the freedom of choosing what "sounds natural". Well, I could do it, and do sometimes, but you're asking for the occasional hit on the head or kick in the butt:
"That's not correct! That's norwegian english, right there!"
"But... the english/the americans put it that way!"
"Yes, but that's their native tongue, and they know what they're doing!"
"Of course, but I've noticed that they say it so, and..."
"You're norwegian, so when you say it, it's wrong. You have no cultural basis that underbuilds a licence to write like that."
"But I've lived my whole life with english on tv, radio, books (hundreds upon hundreds), and I've been there a few times, and..." -By then they won't listen anymore.
I have this idea that english works as a world tongue. The only language that actually works that way. Volapyk, Esperanto, Latin... Pretty likely, you'll meet someone who master it to a degree where you can explain your problem and understand the help you're getting. This position makes it natural that outsiders also have something to contribute. All languages are products of evolution. Should this process stop now? Why?
Slightly off topic, here. I get carried away!! I love english.