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Hello,
I have a question concerning a general usage of the word "you". I have a friend who says the word "you" to me for eg:
"It's going to be cold tomorrow so you better where a winter coat." She claims that she is using the word you in the 3rd person and is not referring to me at all but to anyone and everyone. We often get into spats over this because I think she is speaking to me directly and she says she is being general when she says the word "you". Is she correct and I am just ignorant to the English language ? If she is not using this correctly could you mention how someone would say the above in a general way?

Thanks
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Hi,

She's correct. eg You should respect your parents.

Clive
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Yes it is possible to use 'you' in that way - but not if you are just talking to one person, that would be silly. You can't use it in this way in a conversation with a single specific person. You can only use it in this sense if you are talking in a context where you are clearly speaking to everyone - your example is the sort of thing a weather reporter might say on TV, but it is daft to claim that meaning in a one-to-one conversation.

Also her sentence should be 'you'd better wear a winter coat'.