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  1. Newbie
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      • Native Language:
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    #1

    Naming two behaviors

    Since forever I've had a problem with naming these two behaviors, which I think are pretty common especially among couples I've searched the Internet but I realized I don't really know what to search for... So I hope somebody here can help me Sorry in advance for poor descriptions, my English is quite bad, but I hope you will get what I mean.

    1. In a discussion (or more likely in an argument ), a person I'm talking with sticks to specific word I said, often taken out of context, and tries to build whole new (often ridiculous) logic around that single word, usually diverging from main topic of the discussion. Long story short: I say a word, then suddenly this word, or the way I said it becomes the main topic. How do I call this behavior and how do I confront somebody about it? For example: "You're ... (doing something. But what?)"

    2. Trying to find a problem in some specific matter at all costs, or being very strict about smallest mistake somebody made.

    In my native language there is a single word for these types of behavior, but I can't imagine that they magically don't occur among native English speakers, so there must be some descriptive way or idioms to "name" them

    Thanks in advance for any help!

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    #2

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    1 This could be twisting an argument or a straw man argument.

    I can't think of a term for the second, but we could say that someone is doing this at all costs.

  2. Piscean's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    Quote Originally Posted by beju View Post

    2. Trying to find a problem in some specific matter at all costs, or being very strict about smallest mistake somebody made!
    nit-picking?

  3. kilroy65's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    2. Can we also say "fault-finding"?

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    #5

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    beju, some of our members are native Polish-speakers.

    They may have some insights if you post the relevant Polish words you mentioned.

  4. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    Please click on Edit Post and remove all those unnecessary emoticons in post #1.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #7

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    Quote Originally Posted by kilroy65 View Post
    2. Can we also say "fault-finding"?
    We could use it or some variation depending on the wording of the sentence, but I do prefer nit-picking.

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    #8

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    NOT A TEACHER

    Hello,

    I agree with the Editor: nitpick is probably the most appropriate word.

    Here is an example for you:

    A few years ago, a moderator at a grammar website wanted to ban me. So -- as you said -- he tried his best "to find a problem in some specific matter at all costs." He even objected to my praising a particular grammarian!

  5. Piscean's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post

    I agree with the Editor
    His name is Tdol.

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    #10

    Re: Naming two behaviors

    Whatever my name, I was only agreeing with someone else's suggestion.

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