Hello English lovers, my first post here (actually the one that got me into finally registering here).

Situation - house, one man and two women are inside. Women are fighting, throwing insults at each other and hapless man is trying to calm them down. He exclaims: "Guys, guys, break it up.".

I always thought that "guy" is general term for male, "guys" then means plural form of male => males. How comes it can be used when reffering to women ? Yet I heard it few times over my English career, recently used on "My Name is Earl" episode. Don't remember past experience, but I know I heard it before.
1 2
"Guys" is becoming more and more gender neutral, meaning it can be applied to a group of men, a group of women, or a combination of men and women.
elizabeth11"Guys" is becoming more and more gender neutral, meaning it can be applied to a group of men, a group of women, or a combination of men and women.
I agree with this. However, I would caution against using it for a group of elderly ladies!
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
OK, some kind of newer meaning of term, growing in popularity. Still, partly because of how it sounds, partly because it doesn't seem right (even it's often used that way), I wouldn't normally use it, I would say "ladies" instead.

I wouldn't use gentlemen though :-)
MartyMcFlyI would say "ladies" instead.
Just be aware that some groups of women would have your head on a platter if you called them "ladies".

CJ
Hi CalifJim,

Does gender neutral also apply to "folks, fellows" same as "guys"?

Thanks

Tinanam
Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies
"Folks," yes.

"Fellows" is actually more male than "guys."

I have no problem with someone saying "Hi guys" to me when I'm with other women. "Hey fellows" would be completely wrong.
Hi Grammar Geek,

Thank you for your help.

Tinanam
So it all comes again down to the context, situation you are in.

Guys, fellows, folks, ladies, girls. Maybe it's just me, but calling them "women" sounds weird to me, what about this one ?

As khoff said, some age groups would be annoyed by "guys", some by "ladies". I can imagine that some would nott be glad for "girls".
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
Show more