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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > Which pronoun is correct I or me?    

Which pronoun is correct I or me?



normandey
Egypt

Which pronoun is correct I or me?
 
It ´s ( I or me ) who found the keys?

4 Apr 2017      



Gi2gi
Georgia

´It ´s me ´ is what comes to mind naturally, but as far as grammar is concerned it should be ´it ´s I ´... 
 
 Just like if you asked ´ Who wants an Iphone 10s :) you would hear a loud shout ´ Meeeeeee ´ except for a grammarian sitting in the corner and murmuring ´I.... I....I.... ´ :D

4 Apr 2017     



ldthemagicman
United Kingdom

Dear Giorgi,

 

I think that we should be careful about commenting on how other people speak.
 
Perhaps I should explain that I was born and bred here in the north of England, and am proud to be a ´Geordie ´. This is the name for the people, and also the accent and dialect of this area, around Newcastle and Gateshead, where I live.
 
Many years ago, when I was a teacher in training at a prestigious local College, I attended a Staff Meeting for all the teachers and trainers, from the most junior up to the most senior, plus the administrative staff, right up to the Principal of the College. I remember, that at that time, the Media Department advertised the English for Speakers of Other Languages course using a TV personality, called ´Ali G ´. I found this choice puzzling, because, although he advised the students to come and learn to speak English, he himself seemed totally unable to speak Standard English. My opinion was that the advert was an insult to the English teachers, who were attempting, against all the odds, to teach Standard English.
 
During the plenary session of the Meeting, we were addressed by a Deputy Principal, (third from the top), who addressed us throughout in a strong Geordie accent, frequently using dialect.
 
His final words were: "If yiv gorrenny problims, gerrin touch wi wi".... "If you have any problems, get in touch with us!"
 
I will leave the Members of ESLP to form their own opinions about this.
 
Giorgi, when you say that, grammatically speaking, the original answer should be: "It ´s I who found the keys", but that many people would reply: "It ´s me who found the keys", you are perfectly correct.  
You are also correct when you say that many people would answer your IPhone question with the one-word response: "ME!"
However, I respectfully suggest that there are also many thousands of other people, (including NUMEROUS second-language speakers), who would happily reply, without a moment ´s thought: "I would like one, please!" and not, "Me would like one, please!" or similar, shorter responses.
 
Best Wishes.
 
Les Douglas

4 Apr 2017     



Gi2gi
Georgia

Dear Les,
 
To be honest, I do not quite understand what caused you to write such an extensive post to comment on my modest reply to the OP which in fact says that in short responses people tend to use ´me ´ instead of ´I ´ . This is the essence of my post,and I am always ´ careful  about commenting on how other (?) people speak ´. It was nice from you to share information about your origins and the Ali G story. I find it hard to relate your post to my very humble response , though. 
 
Have a nice day, 
Giorgi 

4 Apr 2017     



cunliffe
United Kingdom

I strongly advise ´me ´ or any of the other object pronouns after ´It ´s ´ if you don ´t want to look like a complete fuddy-duddy (a person who is old-fashioned and pompous). Even in writing - and let ´s be honest, if you are writing something like this, your register is informal. 
It ´s me who tickled the cat/It ´s him who let the cat out of the bag etc...   
If you want to use ´I ´ and you want to be emphatic as in the original sentence, then ´I ´m the one who found the keys. ´  Otherwise, ´It ´s me who found the keys. ´ 
Lynne 
EDIT: It´s me who´s right here!(Correct)
Or ´It is I who am right here!´ (NOT!)

5 Apr 2017     



yanogator
United States

Les,
I think we are all confused by your post, not just Giorgi. No one suggested that anyone would say, "Me would like one, please", so we don ´t understand why you brought it up.
 
Bruce 

5 Apr 2017     



normandey
Egypt

More confused. Thank you all colleagues for your answers, but I ´m more confused. I want ´ please, a definite answer from native speakers. Which is exactly correct to use "I" or "me" in a sentence like the previous one? It ´s "I" or "me" who made the cake. If it is "me" what if I say " It ´s Tom who made the cake.

5 Apr 2017     



ldthemagicman
United Kingdom

APOLOGIES if my computer refuses to do what I ask it.

 

Dear Giorgi,

 

Thank you for your second post here.

 

I am sorry if my remarks caused you misunderstanding! I thought that I had made it clear that, generally speaking, I agreed with your opinion.

 

So that there is no confusion: Giorgi, you are correct in what you say regarding how the majority of people react to ´day-to-day use ´ versus ´grammatical use ´ of language.

 

However, the ‘majority’ is not ‘everybody’. There are some individuals who have a different approach to language, regarding it as inclusive, rather than divisive. They recognise that language is not fixed, but is on a scale, moving from formal to neutral to informal, depending on the circumstances. Language is constantly changing.

 

There are many teachers around the world who work for education authorities which are prescriptive. They tell the teachers and students what is Grammatically CORRECT and what is NOT CORRECT. Teachers and students have no choice but to follow these instructions, (whatever their personal preferences), or risk losing marks in an exam.

 

That is why they frequently ask for the ‘correct’ answer to a question.
 
In this case, the grammatically ´correct ´ answer is: "It ´s I who found the keys".
 
In an exam, an argument which relies on the logic of, “Everyone says it like this!” is unlikely to gain many marks.

 

By contrast, an argument which provides a grammatically incorrect example, (“Me would like one, please!”), demonstrates clearly that the ‘correct’, single-word answer is, “I”. (“I would like one, please!”)

 

My reference to the Ali G story, was an attempt to indicate that some people appear to believe that grammatical speaking/writing is of little or of no importance, and that everything in language is acceptable. By their behaviour, they demonstrate the opposite side of the argument. Despite my ‘Geordie’ upbringing, when I was unable to speak ‘English’, I am not of this opinion.

 

These remarks are just an expression of my thoughts, by way of explanation to Members generally. I shouldn’t need to say that those who have a different view are fully entitled to that opinion.

 

Nothing I say here is a criticism of you, Giorgi. Once again, thank you for your excellent original post, and your subsequent reply.

In this case, the grammatically ´correct ´ answer is: "It ´s I who found the keys".

Les

5 Apr 2017     



KathrynBrooks1
United States

Short and hopefully sweet answer here. "It is I" is correct, but many, many people say, "It is me" in everyday conversation in the U.S., and I suspect that grammar rules will evolve to reflect this trend.
And yes, you would say, "It is Tom who made the cake." 


5 Apr 2017     



cunliffe
United Kingdom

@Kathryn, I think that has already happened. Do you know anyone who would say, or write, ´It is I ´ ? 
@Les, or is that ´Why man, it ´s Aaah what found them keys. ´  
WinkLOL

5 Apr 2017     



Jayho
Australia

Hi all
 
An interesting post.  
 
Thanks Les for your two long and informative posts. I love your explanations but I can see in this case how it was a little confusing.  I am so glad that you rectified the confusion.
 
(So you Les and Lynn are both Geordies  - can you give us the name of  a popular TV show where we can familiarise ourselves with Geordie?)
 
Normandey, you have it from the natives and non-natives, the grammatical form and the everyday form. 

Everyone concurs that:
 
Grammatically correct:   It´s I who found the keys
 
Actual use:   It´s me who found the keys
 
In real life, you would find very few native speakers using the grammatically correct form (and if you use it, you will indeed get some funny looks.  This is why textbook English is not always real English.)
 
 

5 Apr 2017     

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