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  1. Mhd shaher's Avatar
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    #1

    Useful to or for me?

    what is the right thing to say:
    it is useful to me or for me.

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Useful to or for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mhd shaher View Post
    what is the right thing to say:
    it is useful to me or for me.
    They both make sense. Say either.

  3. Mhd shaher's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Useful to or for me?

    but what is the difference?

  4. Raymott's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Useful to or for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mhd shaher View Post
    but what is the difference?
    They use different prepositions. One uses "to" and the other uses "for".
    They mean the same thing.

  5. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Useful to or for me?

    I prefer "useful to me." Generally, "to" signifies intended to be used in a specific way, whereas "for" signifies belonging, suitability or ownership.

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Useful to or for me?

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    I prefer "useful to me." Generally, "to" signifies intended to be used in a specific way, whereas "for" signifies belonging, suitability or ownership.
    I'm confused. You say they have different meanings, but you prefer one version? Shouldn't you prefer the form that conveyed the appropriate meaning?
    I agree that, while they generally mean roughly the same thing, nuances of difference could be extracted. But I can't think of anything that is useful to me that isn't useful for me or vice versa. Can you?

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    #7

    Re: Useful to or for me?

    It's strange that all my dictionaries, including Oxford, Longman, Cambridge and MacMillan, just say 'useful to sb', and 'useful for sth/ for doing sth'.

  7. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Useful to or for me?

    Sorry to cause confusion. I am likely not expressing my ideas well.

    I mean that, given the subtle differences in meaning between "to" and "for" as I see them, the concept of usefulness to a person seems to match the "to" meaning (intended use) better than the "for" meaning (a natural fit).

    To my ears, "useful to me" sounds more natural than "useful for me" to boot.

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