Hi guys (boys and girls) Hi guys (only women) Is that use right?

roxanelag

Senior Member
Spanish-Spain
Topic: Hi guys (boys and girls) Hi guys (only women)
Please include topic in post itself. Cagey, moderator

Hi there folks! How's it going?
I was having a very informal chat with some other ESL students and this question came up.
I'd swear having watched some videos in which a woman, I'd say young or teenager,
speaks like that to her female friends.
Is that possible?
I would appreciate some help, because people here don't study at all, but they regard
any single new thing with suspicion. What can I say? This is Spain :D
Thanks in advance.
Bye
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    I am pretty sure Americans say it to all girl groups, and I have a feeling that it is coming in over here in the UK, but I would advise learners to see if the locals use this expression in this context before jumping in with it themselves.
     

    souplady

    Senior Member
    english - united states
    Here in America it's a gender neutral expression and very casual.

    You're also likely to here "you guys" which is a plural form of "you."
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    Here in America it's a gender neutral expression and very casual.
    We have a number of female members of this forum from both sides of the pond who privately state that they resent being called "guys" but don't make a public issue of it.

    Since the expression is easily avoided, I recommend that path to learners.
     

    souplady

    Senior Member
    english - united states
    We have a number of female members of this forum from both sides of the pond who privately state that they resent being called "guys" but don't make a public issue of it.

    Since the expression is easily avoided, I recommend that path to learners.
    Ah, I've actually never heard anybody say they didn't like it before.
    Perhaps I will try to avoid it from now on. I admit that's going to be a pretty tough habit to break though.
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    Here is a previous thread: Guy, guys (age/sex/acceptability of?)

    It confirms the fact that people have a range of reactions to this, but that there are people who resent this form of address.


    An aside: For some people, there may be a difference in whether this is written or spoken address. Some people may not notice the use in casual conversation, but dislike it when they see it in writing, as in this forum.
     

    roxanelag

    Senior Member
    Spanish-Spain
    Wow! Thanks a lot folks!
    Languages evolve, sometimes for the better sometimes ...
    For me, as a ESL student, this is an anecdotal, because I wouldn't use 'guys' before having checked how
    local people speaks, and I find more correct 'folks' for instance.
    Thank you very much. It's a pleasure to see how you are involved here. This is an amazing tool to me.
    See you around and have a nice weekend.
     

    Copperknickers

    Senior Member
    Scotland - Scots and English
    'Folks' is not a good substitution for 'guys'. It doesn't mean the same thing as 'guys', it means 'people'. You can't say 'hey you people' as a form of address as you might say 'hey you guys'. In the UK 'folks' is not used except by rather pretentious stage personalities addressing their audience, though I understand it's more common in the USA.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    I sometimes ask a question on the forum. I might address my fellow-members as "everyone" or "all":

    "Hello/Hi everyone,
    Can anyone tell me... bla bla...
    ...
    .thanks to all who contributed."

    It isn't really necessary to call us anything though. :)
     

    sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    In the UK 'folks' is not used except by rather pretentious stage personalities addressing their audience, though I understand it's more common in the USA.
    "Folks" is indeed common on this side of the pond. Those of us old enough to remember cartoons in movie theaters (cinemas) well remember the Looney Tunes signoff:
     

    suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    'Folks' is not a good substitution for 'guys'. It doesn't mean the same thing as 'guys', it means 'people'. You can't say 'hey you people' as a form of address as you might say 'hey you guys'. In the UK 'folks' is not used except by rather pretentious stage personalities addressing their audience.
    Crikey, that's me told then! I will have to stop using it as I do not fit the stereotype, though I know I use it a lot. I certainly used to use it in the classroom to call the crowd to order for the next activity, or whatever. "Right folks, let move on ... "
     

    Copperknickers

    Senior Member
    Scotland - Scots and English
    Crikey, that's me told then! I will have to stop using it as I do not fit the stereotype, though I know I use it a lot. I certainly used to use it in the classroom to call the crowd to order for the next activity, or whatever. "Right folks, let move on ... "
    Being a teacher is not dissimilar to being a stage personality, you don't tend to use English the way you would in a normal context.
     

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    I think that using 'guys' as a way of addressing a group of people such as this forum community is a totally inappropriate use of language.

    First, 'guys' is ( very) informal. Finding the correct register for addressing people is as important as any other aspect of language. Perhaps it is the most important if we're talking about human relations and making impressions, in other words, effective communication. Even more important, it's about treating people with respect and taking great care not to offend anybody.

    If you are being interviewed by for a job, would you greet the interviewing panel " Hey guys!"? If you would not, why on earth do you assume that 'Hey guys!' is a suitable way to greet members of this forum?
    That's regardless of age, gender or nationality.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    :eek: I hope this forum is a little more friendly and welcoming than an interviewing panel.;)

    I can appreciate that "guys" can annoy, but I also appreciate that many members use it to sound friendly - and because in their native language it's rude to address people without calling them something. "Folks"to my British ear sounds...well, "folksy".:D
     

    bicontinental

    Senior Member
    English (US), Danish, bilingual
    In my view ‘you guys’ is gender-neutral, very colloquial and most definitely generational (speaking for the U.S. side of the pond only):

    The younger generations use it informally among each other when addressing mixed groups. Their grandparents might say ‘you people’ and may find the use of ‘you guys’ inappropriate, even offensive. The generation(s) in between (to which I belong), may go either way. Personally I don’t find ‘you guys’ offensive in any way, I don't find it any more or less respectful than 'you people' but see it as a reflection of the speaker's age and maybe personality.

    I realize that this is very subjective. And there are obviously 'safer', more neutral alternatives as mentioned above.

    Finally, I think everyone can agree that 'Hi/hey guys' is quite informal and therefore not appropriate for more serious and/or formal contexts such as job interviews, court rooms etc.

    bic.:)
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    In my book:
    1. Any use of guy other than in reference to Guy Fawkes or tent-ropes sounds very distinctly American.
    2. The British equivalent is fellow (pronounced and sometimes spelt: feller); plural fellows or folks.
    3. All uses of guy (except aforementioned tent-ropes)are masculine, as is fellow.
    4. Anyone referring to me as guy or dude on this website will be violently ignored.
    There, I think that covers all bases... ;)
     
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