November 17, 2008

pet peeve: no problem

I guess I'll return to the topic once I have received and read a copy of this article:

Schneider, Klaus P. (2005): 'No problem, you're welcome, anytime': Responding to thanks in Ireland, England, and the U.S.A. In: Barron, Anne / Schneider, Klaus P. (eds.): The Pragmatics of Irish English. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter.

Scheider lists "no problem" along with "don't mention it" as a thanking strategy that minimizes the favor. By contrast, "you're welcome" is a strategy that is used to express appreciation of the thanker. He quotes a study according to which the minimizing strategy is more common in American English than in British English. However, the appreciation strategy, according to a questionnaire study carried out by him, is even more typical of American English.

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