capter qqn dans la rue

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British english
I read this recently:

'Facebook - l'endroit où les gens t'ajoutent comme ami, mais ne te captent pas dans la rue.'

Has 'capter' replaced 'saluer'/'reconnaître' in informal French?
  • Missiou

    New Member
    Yeah that's right. "Capter quelqu'un dans la rue" means "saluer quelqu'un", meet someone. This quotation means that some people add a lot of "friends" on facebook but they are not real friends because they don't pay any attention for you in the real life.


    Senior Member
    […] To answer your question, one cannot say that « 'capter' has replaced 'saluer'/'reconnaître' in informal French ». Not for the general public anyway. I suspect that it is used here specifically as a pun to emphasize the paradoxical situation which Missiou has explained. Facebook users ‘captent’ radio signals (which is one of the basic meanings of the word) but not visual contact ; they are friends only when using fashionable media.

    So, don’t worry, in everyday life, you can still use 'saluer'/'reconnaître'.
    Last edited by a moderator:


    Senior Member
    french, France
    "capter" can also be used to mean "to meet up".

    " Quand je rentre en France, il faut absolument que l'on arrive à se capter ! "

    It's informal though.
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