I think VS. I don't think

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hiroff

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Dear members,

I have learnt that "I don't think it will rain tomorrow" sounds more natural than "I think it won't rain tomorrow". But, how about in the following situation:

Your colleague: I'll go upstairs to make some photocopies.

You : I think the copier isn't working. (you're sure that it's broken.)

Still "I don't think it's working" sounds better or more natural?
 
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Nicklexoxo

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I am not a native speaker

Dear members,

I have learnt that "I don't think it will rain tomorrow" sounds more natural than "I think I won't rain tomorrow". But, how about in the following situation:

Your colleague: I'll go upstairs to make some photocopies.

You : I think the copier isn't working. (you're sure that it's broken.)

Still "I don't think it's working" sounds better or more natural?

I think that you wanted to write: "I think it won't rain tomorrow"
About your question I think that:
1) "I don't think it will rain tomorrow" sounds better than "I think itwon't rain tomorrow", but maybe both of them can be correct.
2) I have an analogy opinion about your example with copier: "I don't think that it's working" sounds better than "I think the copier is not working", but, also, both of them can be correct.

Nickle. Not a native speaker.
 

hiroff

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Thank you Nickle for your comments. I have corrected my original sentence, from "I won't rain" to "it won't rain". Thanks!
 

Rover_KE

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Your colleague: I'll go upstairs to make some photocopies.

You : I think the copier isn't working. (you're sure that it's broken.)

Still "I don't think it's working" sounds better or more natural?

Yes — 'I don't think it's working' sounds more natural, but only if you're not sure it's broken.

Rover
 
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hiroff

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Yes — 'I don't think it's working' sounds more natural, but only if you're not sure it's broken.

Rover

Thank you Rover for your comments.
So in the case that you're 100% sure that it's broken, you say "I think it's not working" rather than 'I don't think it's working'. Is that correct?
 

Rover_KE

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No. You say 'It's not working' and save him making a pointless trip upstairs.
 

emsr2d2

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Thank you Rover for your comments.
So in the case that you're 100% sure that it's broken, you say "I think it's not working" rather than 'I don't think it's working'. Is that correct?

No, if you're 100% sure it's broken, then you wouldn't say "I think ..." at all. You'd say "The photocopier's broken" or "It's broken".
"I don't think it's working", "I think it's not working" and "I think it's broken" all mean the same thing - you're not sure.
 

hiroff

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No, if you're 100% sure it's broken, then you wouldn't say "I think ..." at all. You'd say "The photocopier's broken" or "It's broken".
"I don't think it's working", "I think it's not working" and "I think it's broken" all mean the same thing - you're not sure.

I see! Thank you very much for the clarification! I really appreciate all those who have replied to my message.:-D
 
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