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    #1

    what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    1. what's the difference as above-mentioned question?

    2. Which one is more polite?

    3. Which one sounds like more rude?

  1. probus's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    In AmE slang "What's up" (whassup) was all the rage fifteen to twenty years ago. "What's going on" came into vogue about ten years ago. To me "what's the hell on earth" is ungrammatical and I have never heard it. In my opinion, neither of the two acceptable choices is either very polite or very rude. They are slang, after all.

  2. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    To me "what's the hell on earth" is ungrammatical and I have never heard it.
    The OP may mean 'What the hell/on earth is going on?'
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    #4

    Re: what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    Those would make sense, but the OP's original version doesn't work in BrE either.

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    "What's up (wassup)", "what's going on", and "what the hell is going on" are all common in AmE slang. "What on earth is going on" is not so common.

  4. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    http://www.ldoceonline.com/dictionary/hell_1 It says 'the hell' is not polite.

    Not a teacher.

  5. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    Just an opinion.

  6. BobK's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: what's going on VS what's up VS what's the hell on earth?

    I agree with Matthew (the Like button doesn't seem to be working ) - the speaker is confusing 'What the hell...?' and 'What on earth...?'. But a catalyst for the conflation could be the idiomatic expression 'hell on earth' - which means 'very unpleasant place'.

    b
    PS Apologies for the big words; I'm feeling very sesquipedalian today.
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