6
   

"may" or "can" ?

 
 
Reply Tue 29 Oct, 2013 07:33 am
Hello,

Thank you for reading this post. I need your expertise in english for a particular case of the use of modal verbs.

I shared a Facebook page on a Facebook group in wich I do not have any authority, I am equal to the other members so nothing about permission is involved. After this, I added the comment:"You can like the page also." as a suggestion.

I have this debate with someone about the use of "can" in this situation. The other person says it is wrong to use "can" in this situation, and suggests, "may" was correct or more appropiate.

Can you help? I would really like to know how if I used it correctly and how to use modal verbs correctly in the future.

Thank you!
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Type: Question • Score: 6 • Views: 1,029 • Replies: 8
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PUNKEY
 
  1  
Reply Tue 29 Oct, 2013 07:37 am
You have permission to . . . (may)

You are able to . . . (can)
OmSigDAVID
 
  0  
Reply Tue 29 Oct, 2013 08:43 am
@PUNKEY,
PUNKEY wrote:
You have permission to . . . (may)

You are able to . . . (can)

That is true, but CAN
is used so OFEN that we have all
gotten used to it.





David
0 Replies
 
timur
 
  1  
Reply Tue 29 Oct, 2013 08:49 am
Can I can this archaism?

How can I can a can, if I may?

May this thing be right but come what may..
0 Replies
 
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Tue 29 Oct, 2013 09:55 am
It depends on how formal you want to sound .

In this context, "may" is formal.

If it's informal you might say, "like this page if you want," and avoid the improper grammar dilemma.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Tue 29 Oct, 2013 08:22 pm
@PUNKEY,
Quote:
You have permission to . . . (may)

You are able to . . . (can)


FALSE, FALSE, FALSE, Punkey.

You can use my pen. = You have my permission to use my pen.

Of course 'can' also holds the meaning of ability.

Of course, one could also say, " You may use my pen", but the use of 'may' for permission is very rare as measured against CAN, COULD, WOULD.
0 Replies
 
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Tue 29 Oct, 2013 08:30 pm
@vladutnea,
Quote:
I shared a Facebook page on a Facebook group in which I do not have any authority, I am equal to the other members so nothing about permission is involved. After this, I added the comment:"You can like the page also." as a suggestion.

I have this debate with someone about the use of "can" in this situation. The other person says it is wrong to use "can" in this situation, and suggests, "may" was correct or more appropriate.

Can you help? I would really like to know [how] if I used it correctly and how to use modal verbs correctly in the future.


It's not possible to give you an answer without knowing more of the context involved in the situation. What conversation preceded your comment,
"You can like the page also"?
vladutnea
 
  1  
Reply Wed 30 Oct, 2013 04:23 am
@JTT,
There was no conversation before, I just wanted to make a suggestion.
JTT
 
  0  
Reply Wed 30 Oct, 2013 08:47 pm
@vladutnea,
Quote:
I have this debate with someone about the use of "can" in this situation. The other person says it is wrong to use "can" in this situation, and suggests, "may" was correct or more appropriate.

Can you help? I would really like to know how if I used it correctly and how to use modal verbs correctly in the future.


Did the other person tell you why he/she considered it wrong?
0 Replies
 
 

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