Reminder about different language backgrounds

It’s sad that this has to be said. Those of us who were raised in the English language should realize how easy we have it and be tolerant of imperfections when non-English speakers communicate with us. Translations can easily appear brusque, insensitive or rude when it’s not intended. The English language is difficult enough for native speakers to keep up with, with words that were acceptable three years ago suddenly becoming offensive, insensitive or outdated, so everyone should cut some slack to those who make an effort to communicate in a language not their own. People participating in an international forum should know better.


What does that mean?

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For What It’s Worth


Thanks! But I don’t understand the sense of it in this context.

I remember a few moments when I felt like what I wanted to convey was not properly conveyed or it seemed that many sentences contained new meanings/nuances now. When I write something like “That’s interesting", I thought that conveys its true meaning, that I genuinely interested. But I have read in another topic that it apparently sounds less enthusiastic or a bit cold? So now I use “I am intrigued” instead, whenever I remember. But then again, I think it’s okay not to think too much in a conversations. Especially in a space where we can’t see the other’s expressions and body language. The most important part is just trying to communicate and connect.


Not for me.

I don’t believe it is helpfull.
I do not have notes on my doors telling ‘open the door before you enter, be careful with glassdoors - and take care if you carry tablewear or glasses. You might get damaged seriously.’ Etcetera.

Because I do not need it and I believe my guests won’t need it.

If you believe it might be helpfull for others, but not for you, then it’s often not helpfull.


Hard for me to convey, but it means along the lines of this is my opinion, maybe it will help you feel better. It’s said to try and offer support.

Maybe someone else can explain it better?

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I think this would be more like for the situation when the door is open. When you are at home, you know what bugs might come, and what sound making ones might bite so you want to perhaps eliminate them.

Now you are in different location, with door open, some bugs come that make similar sounding noise as the biting once. But, you don’t know if they bite. Some think they do, or are sure (wrongly) and want to eliminate them. Some let them make the sound and watch what they do.

And the door is open, because you chose to (join the Postcrossing).


Ok, but hat’s not what this suggestion or topic is about.
I too do write the language I think the members knows best, if I can it too.

This suggestion is about these common areas where the language is English. And it wouldn’t be polite to write some other language suddenly. (Like I reply to Finns in English too.)


Thank you for the explanation! With my question I also wanted to show, that a formulation or abbreviation, which is common to native speakers, might be unknown to non-native speakers.
I always thought my English is not so bad, but I had no clue, what that abbreviation means, so I googled it and still had not really a clue afterwards, but @Johnk60 helped me - thank you, John! I would have understood “IMHO” for “in my humble opinion”, for that one was quite common in internet forums some years ago, but maybe even that abbreviation is not known by everyone.


I like this observation :slight_smile: !
I don’t know if there even is anything equivalent in Finnish. (for FWIW).

So it’s a polite pre-phrase to opinion or habit etc when they still “approve” the other? Or is it suggestion to do/understand something else? Told because the reader (of opposite opinion/behaviour) might like to hear this viewpoint, or the sayer thinks telling this will help the understanding?

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FWIW isa polite “filler” really. It means what I’m saying may or may not be helpful/important



I did not know what the abbreviation, FWIW, meant at all either !

I really really do hope now that all the native English speakers give all the non-native English speakers who really are not good enough to catch up with this fast-pace-posting-everywhere-on-the-forum-in-English a break.

Apparently, most of non-native English speakers including myself do not understand that kind of abbreviations and there are tons more in English that we do not understand…

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@clubpostcards I do not share your aggreesion, sorry!

I’m a native English speaker, and I didn’t know what FWIW means either! :woozy_face: @RalfH @clubpostcards



You mean I sounded aggressive above ?

No, I did not mean to be. That was just my very honest expression. And I have thought as I mentioned above since Day One on Postcrossing - a newbie.


Which, I think, highlights the point of this thread. I also didn’t read your comment as aggressive. This is so interesting.


Yes, really, it is so interesting.

And I feel appreciative of this sort of thread where we can talk about what we can do to understand each other more better.

My suggestions - on topic :

  1. Try to use simple English, easy English, basic English
  2. Be mindful if non-native English speakers worldwide are catching up whenever you post in English
  3. Show understanding when you read posts by other people worldwide

To @S_Tuulia and everyone else :

Any other suggestions ?


I didn’t read your comment as aggressive :slight_smile:

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SMH took me a while to get used to …

(Shaking my head)

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