Student or Learner
Hello! I've a question. I'm from germany and learned english in school, it's not very well but enough to communicate :p
I've played a game with a friend, he catched an enemy player and got a point for us. But another player from our team thought the point belongs to him.
My friend wrote then: "I earn it." I told him it would have been better if he said "I deserve it."
Because I think, if I say "I earn it" it is more like "I get it", without expressing that he thinks that the point belongs to him.
But if he wants to say that it was his work and it belongs to him, wouldn't it have been better to say: "I deserve it" ?
I think I deserve it makes clearly that he has the opinion it was his action, which made us getting the point, so that he deserves it,
while I earn it just distances from every feeling and just describes that he "gets" it.
Please tell me which is correct, or even if both is :)
Sorry, but I think your friend was right.
To "earn" something implies more than just "getting" it. It means that you did something specific and relevant which entitles you to have it.
For example, suppose you work in an office. If you go to the office every day, you will get your pay. However, you will have earned your pay only if you have worked hard while you were at the office.
You are not completely wrong. You could also say that you deserve your pay, because you work hard. But that's the point. It's not enough just to say that you deserve something; you have to add why you deserve it - in this case, because you work hard. Whereas, it's immediately understood how you earn your pay: by working hard.
Thus, your friend deserves the point because he earned it by catching an enemy player.
If you just say he deserves it, you have to say why. Is it because he's a good looking individual? Is it because he has had a bad time recently? Is it because he treats his mother well?
If you say he earned it, it's means that he did something in the course of the game which should have resulted in his scoring a point. It needs no further explanation.
I'm not a teacher of English, but I have spoken it for (almost) all of my life....
Okay, but I thought if I say "I earn it" also doesn't explains why or how I've earned it. Just that I earned it, in the meaning of "getting it".
Because for example there are websites in the internet saying: "How to earn money while sitting on the couch". Or "How to earn money without doing something". Aside these are real promises or not, I dont understand how it can be used, if earning actually means that you have done something in exchange, if it says that you don't need to in the same sentence.
For example you're a worker in a restaurant, and somebody becomes employee of the month. Now in your opinion this title belongs more to you than to him/her. If you talk to your boss now, you won't say: "I earn that title more than him/her", don't you?
I would say "I deserve this title more than him/her", because it implies stronger that I did something for it which actually makes me rather deserving it, in my opinion.
Or am I totally wrong with that? Thanks for answering
Don't use "spam" Internet ads as a guide to English.
If someone in a restaurant gets an award that you think you deserved, you could say "He didn't deserve it because he didn't earn it". "Earn" is an action"; "deserve" is more of a state.
I agree with your second to last sentence, but be aware that there are people who think they deserve things just for showing up. I will repeat my initial statement: One deserves things when one earns them (save basic human rights).
Last edited by MikeNewYork; 28-Sep-2013 at 23:48. Reason: typo