Results 1 to 8 of 8
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Canada
      • Current Location:
      • Switzerland

    • Join Date: Aug 2009
    • Posts: 1,676
    #1

    Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    "I am dissatisfied/unsatisfied with the text you've written."

    I've done some reading on the differences between "dissatisfied" and "unsatisfied," but I'm not sure that I quite get them. Could someone provide a clear explanation? Are both words possible in my example?

    Thanks!

  1. 5jj's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Oct 2010
    • Posts: 28,134
    #2

    Re: Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    "I am dissatisfied/unsatisfied with the text you've written."
    I am unsatisfied if I haven't got what I wanted, dissatisfied if what I got wasn't good enough. In your example, it would be dissatisfied - for me.

    I stressed the first word of my answer. I am not putting this forward as a response that will satisfy everybody.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Great Britain
      • Current Location:
      • Great Britain

    • Join Date: Feb 2011
    • Posts: 50
    #3

    Re: Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    "I am dissatisfied/unsatisfied with the text you've written."

    I've done some reading on the differences between "dissatisfied" and "unsatisfied," but I'm not sure that I quite get them. Could someone provide a clear explanation? Are both words possible in my example?

    Thanks!
    Only a person can be dissatisfied whereas an abstract thing can be unsatisfied e.g. thirst, hunger, need

    unsatisfied implies that a wish, need, or expectation that previously existed has not been satisfied; dissatisfied implies no such prior existence, but simply registers a failure to be satisfied

    dissatisfied apples to people who are unhappy, frustrated with something

    unsatisfied refers to needing more

    for example

    Jackie was dissatified with the teacher's answer to her question

    They were dissatisfied with the standard of care offered by their local hospital

    Jackie had eated two bags of crisps but her hunger was still unsatisfied

    His thirst was unsatisfied so he needed more water

  2. Route21's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Thailand

    • Join Date: Nov 2010
    • Posts: 938
    #4

    Re: Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    Hi Jasmin

    Following on from minnieuk. see:

    unsatisfied - definition of unsatisfied by the Free Online Dictionary, Thesaurus and Encyclopedia.

    dissatisfied, unsatisfied - Only a person can be dissatisfied, while an abstract thing (such as hunger) can be unsatisfied.See also related terms for hunger.

    Best regards
    R21

    PS I also agree with Fivejedjon
    Last edited by Route21; 30-Mar-2011 at 10:28.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Canada
      • Current Location:
      • Switzerland

    • Join Date: Aug 2009
    • Posts: 1,676
    #5

    Re: Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    I think "unsatisfied" could also work in my example.

    Let's assume that someone really likes another person's style of writing. So she asks that person to write something for her. And he does. But that doesn't quench her literary thirst, so she says, "I am unsatisfied with the text you wrote; I want more."

  3. bhaisahab's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Ireland

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 25,627
    #6

    Re: Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    I think "unsatisfied" could also work in my example.

    Let's assume that someone really likes another person's style of writing. So she asks that person to write something for her. And he does. But that doesn't quench her literary thirst, so she says, "I am unsatisfied with the text you wrote; I want more."
    I wouldn't use it like that. I prefer "Your text/writing left me feeling unsatisfied; I want more".

  4. 5jj's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Oct 2010
    • Posts: 28,134
    #7

    Re: Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    I think "unsatisfied" could also work in my example.
    I agree. Part of the problem is that both words are ferquently possible; it depends on how the speaker feels at the moment of speaking. The result of this is that the words frequently appear to be interchangeable.

    However, minnnieuk and R21 are right - Only a person can be 'dissatisfied', whereas an abstract thing can be 'unsatisfied' e.g. thirst, hunger, need.

  5. BobK's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 16,038
    #8

    Re: Dissatisfied vs. unsatisfied

    Quote Originally Posted by Jasmin165 View Post
    I think "unsatisfied" could also work in my example.

    Let's assume that someone really likes another person's style of writing. So she asks that person to write something for her. And he does. But that doesn't quench her literary thirst, so she says, "I am unsatisfied with the text you wrote; I want more."
    If you look at what 5jj wrote, you'll see that he agrees - you 'haven't got what [you] wanted'. His last words applied to a general context.
    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    I am unsatisfied if I haven't got what I wanted, dissatisfied if what I got wasn't good enough. In your example, it would be dissatisfied - for me.

    ...
    b

Similar Threads

  1. [General] english unsatisfied
    By tangoku in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 22-Mar-2010, 02:05

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •