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    #1

    Post Do I know you? - what does it mean?

    Dear teachers,

    I was taught that if you think you've seen someone before, but you're not sure, you can always ask this question - Don't I know you?

    I was a little surprised to learn that. I was wondering if 'do I know you? can express the same idea? If it can't, what does 'do I know you? imply?

    Thank you!

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Do I know you? - what does it mean?

    Tone of voice will influence this, but "Do I know you" would be used if someone behaved in a way that implied they knew you, but you did not recognize them. It suggest that person is being more intimate than is appropriate.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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    #3

    Re: Do I know you? - what does it mean?

    Thank you, Barb_D.

    If I think I've seen someone before, but I'm not sure, is it appropriate or polite to ask 'do I know you' in a nice and polite tone?

    Thank you!

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Do I know you? - what does it mean?

    'Don't I know you?' is safer.

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Do I know you? - what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    'Don't I know you?' is safer.
    As Barb said 'Do I know you' can imply that the speaker disapproves of the objects intimacy. In fact, it can be an out and out insult.

    b

  4. 5jj's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Do I know you? - what does it mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    As Barb said 'Do I know you' can imply that the speaker disapproves of the objects intimacy. In fact, it can be an out and out insult.

    b
    You can see the effect of a similar question, "who is is this person..?" here, from about 2.53 on: Longshanks - YouTube

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