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View Full Version : "No Problem" = "You're Welcome" - When Did This Happen?


Csapo
11-11-2011, 05:37 PM
Maybe it is a generational thing, but when did "No problem" replace saying "You're welcome"? Does this come from the updated Emily Post book of etiquette.

I go into a Starbucks pretty much every day (yeah, sad I know) and 98 times out of 100, the response to my "thank you" is "no problem". Maybe this is in their training manual? WTF????

Am I out of touch???

A-Bone
11-11-2011, 05:39 PM
I have become conscious of this of late, and am trying to always reply to Thanks or Thank You with "You're welcome." As opposed to responding with "sure" or "no problem" or "don't mention it".

shredtrash
11-11-2011, 05:41 PM
Gotta say, I don't see the big deal.

Stratm69
11-11-2011, 05:42 PM
I think the real problem is you go to Starbucks everyday.

Don't you know it's owned by the Illuminati???



Oh, and this:

http://www.philebrity.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/10/grandpa_simpson_yelling_at_cloud_001.jpg.pagespeed .ce.XmvCtSicoX.jpg

itkindaworks
11-11-2011, 05:45 PM
I say sure thing a lot. To me it has the same connotation, granted I'm not a barista.

FenderBigot
11-11-2011, 05:46 PM
I think it's all about the type of situation... you do a favor for someone, that's no problem. You're in retail/service... it should be "You're welcome SIR" imho.

My dad used to get pissed when I was a kid. He'd say "Thank you for mowing the lawn" and I said "no problem"... to him that was disrespectful, but to me it really WASN'T A PROBLEM!

Teleplayer
11-11-2011, 05:53 PM
As long as folks are complaining here, what's "edicate"?

epluribus
11-11-2011, 05:54 PM
The phrase actually has its roots in archaic dialects...

kKQcZYTZVmI

Zimi
11-11-2011, 05:55 PM
I go into a Starbucks pretty much every day (yeah, sad I know) and 98 times out of 100, the response to my "thank you" is "no problem". Maybe this is in their training manual? WTF????

Am I out of touch???

Why are you thanking them for taking your money?

Sounds weird, but think about it. They should be thanking you for your business.

I understand being polite, and used to be one who thanked people left and right, and used to wonder about similar questions as yours.

Empower yourself. Stop thanking people for doing what they're paid to do and taking your money. That doesn't mean you have to be a dick about it and act like they work for you, but you certainly don't owe them any thanks if you're paying them.

A-Bone
11-11-2011, 05:55 PM
As long as folks are complaining here, what's "edicate"?

It's between edict and educate. Or possibly he meant etiquette. ;)

rh
11-11-2011, 05:56 PM
In several languages, the equivalent to "thank you" is "it was nothing" or a phrase to that effect.

grateful.ed
11-11-2011, 05:57 PM
I think it's all about the type of situation... you do a favor for someone, that's no problem. You're in retail/service... it should be "You're welcome SIR" imho.

agreed. it kinda implies..."even though I'm just doing my job...there's a point where you'll be a pain in my ass."

84superchamp
11-11-2011, 06:00 PM
everybody is different. i wonder if people are offended when i answer a "thank you" with "you bet", just an almost subconcious reply.
but to the OP, i have noticed an overall slippage of real courtesy. nobody cares anymore.

Wombat
11-11-2011, 06:00 PM
I think it's all about the type of situation... you do a favor for someone, that's no problem. You're in retail/service... it should be "You're welcome SIR" imho.

My dad used to get pissed when I was a kid. He'd say "Thank you for mowing the lawn" and I said "no problem"... to him that was disrespectful, but to me it really WASN'T A PROBLEM!

This sums it up pretty nicely I think.

slackandsteel
11-11-2011, 06:02 PM
Why are you thanking them for taking your money?

Empower yourself. Stop thanking people for doing what they're paid to do and taking your money. That doesn't mean you have to be a dick about it and act like they work for you, but you certainly don't owe them any thanks if you're paying them.

Respectfully disagree.

It never hurts to say "thank you" when someone serves you. The workers in retail don't get paid a lot and have to deal with all kinds of a@#holes all the time. I like being treated in a nice way and saying thank you is one way to acknowledge that.

On the other hand, I'm not saying thank you to anyone who treats me in rude or surly manner. That's just stupid.

Cody
11-11-2011, 06:02 PM
It's fine IMO. Also acceptable:

"You bet"
"Anytime"
"My pleasure"
"Yeah, screw you too"
"No, thank YOU, you condescending pr!ck"

It's all good.

LAVALLE
11-11-2011, 06:04 PM
Thank you!!! This pisses me off to no end. When one of these creeps says "no problem" to me I say "why would it be a problem"? That really knocks them off their game plan.

Csapo
11-11-2011, 06:06 PM
As long as folks are complaining here, what's "edicate"?

:bonk

LHanson
11-11-2011, 06:11 PM
In several languages, the equivalent to "thank you" is "it was nothing" or a phrase to that effect.

De nada. Actually, the eqivalent to "You're welcome" is "It is nothing" (De Nada).

I don't really speak spanish or any of it's offshoots. Please feel free to correct.

dantedayjob
11-11-2011, 06:17 PM
I actually kind of like it, it feels more personal, friendlier... and it is still polite, certainly more so than a blank stare or scowl. Of course, it is a situational thing as well; Starbucks=casual, "no problem" is ok... 4 star restaurant, "of course, sir. my pleasure" is an appropriate response.

FWIW, the response "You're welcome" is a relatively recent addition to the language, dating to around 1900.

Selsaral
11-11-2011, 06:21 PM
To me, 100 years of "you're welcome" made it so automatic as to be insincere. These other replies seem more authentic to me.

HooBass
11-11-2011, 06:46 PM
holy crap

MES10
11-11-2011, 06:52 PM
"You're welcome" can be condescending in certain situations. If you save somebody's life, "You're welcome" is an appropriate response to their thank you, but if I'm just holding a door for someone, "No problem" is more appropriate IMHO

rokpunk
11-11-2011, 06:53 PM
guess you've never been to jamaica. nothing is a problem down there.

lpfella
11-11-2011, 06:54 PM
You're out of touch

Flyin' Brian
11-11-2011, 06:55 PM
I get "no worries" or "no worry" quite a bit here in Canada.

toocommercial
11-11-2011, 06:59 PM
Retail dynamic has switched around lately. The customer says thank you and the clerk says you're welcome. It's twisted and sad.

CharlyG
11-11-2011, 07:04 PM
I am from the midwest and I have been saying you betcha instead of your welcome practically all my life. (and I am 60)

CharlyG
11-11-2011, 07:06 PM
Retail dynamic has switched around lately. The customer says thank you and the clerk says you're welcome. It's twisted and sad.

I do say thank you if they(clerks) are nice. Therefore, it requires a thank you and a your welcome/you betcha from each of us.

clicktone
11-11-2011, 07:07 PM
The term "No Problem" is an in appropriate response for someone working retail. Of course my paid request is "not a problem", that's what you've been hired to do!? If it was a problem for you then you obviously don't need to be working there. The proper response SHOULD be "You're Welcome"...for they are grateful that you patronized their establishment.

We've definitely lost some etiquette over the years. Seems that we're becoming a more casual (slack jaw'd) society, especially in our "social graces". Let's not forget that manners aren't taught in the schools or work place...they are learned in the home...and some homes teach better than others.

crazyForce
11-11-2011, 07:09 PM
To me, 100 years of "you're welcome" made it so automatic as to be insincere.

...or even condescending in its own rite.


These other replies seem more authentic to me.

I agree.

Tonekat
11-11-2011, 07:14 PM
My brain translates "no problem" into "you're welcome" automatically. Customers often suck, so I try to not suck.

Polynitro
11-11-2011, 07:15 PM
"No, Thak you!" is the worst.

mountain blues
11-11-2011, 07:19 PM
There's a cool website called The Corpus of Historical American English that allows you to get data on the frequency of words and phrases being used, going back to 1810.

Their data says that 'no problem' started taking off as a replacement for 'you're welcome' back in 1950 and has been rising in popularity ever since.


Also, in Mexican Spanish, at least, No (hay) problema '(There is) no problem' is every bit as common as in English, and gets used as a standard disclaimer for not requiring an apology or display of gratitude.

dumbell78
11-11-2011, 07:22 PM
True, in mine we say "le dakrah" which translates to "it isnt worth it". Meaning it isnt worth thanking me, very common around the world.

In several languages, the equivalent to "thank you" is "it was nothing" or a phrase to that effect.

HoboMan
11-11-2011, 07:24 PM
It's fine IMO. Also acceptable:

"You bet"
"Anytime"
"My pleasure"
"Yeah, screw you too"
"No, thank YOU, you condescending pr!ck"

It's all good.

:rotflmao

jekylmeister
11-11-2011, 08:14 PM
Wow, what weird timing. I was telling my wife just this afternoon (in between chasing kids off the lawn) that I did not think that "No problem" was an appropriate response to thank you. I'm not sure there's anything really wrong with it, but it just doesn't rub me as the right thing to say when someone thanks you.

The Golden Boy
11-11-2011, 09:10 PM
I am generous with my "please" and "thank you" and "sir" and "miss."

I do not accept compliments or gifts well, and I do sort of get embarrassed in some odd way when someone says "thank you" to me so "no problem" is a more natural answer than "you're welcome."

Boris Bubbanov
11-11-2011, 09:18 PM
I have become conscious of this of late, and am trying to always reply to Thanks or Thank You with "You're welcome." As opposed to responding with "sure" or "no problem" or "don't mention it".

+1

No Problem = Don't mention it.

In other words, thanks were never required in the first place.

If thanks are appropriate, then "you're welcome" is the response.


Some people don't understand why we thank everybody for things they're gonna do anyway. I guess I can deal with that.

I like "you're welcome" because that's what my Granddad taught me to say. I sure don't mind being reminded of that! ;)

harmonicator
11-11-2011, 09:19 PM
I say both.

not the kinda thing that keeps me up at night.

fuzz_factor
11-11-2011, 09:27 PM
I say "no problem" in response to a thank you some time. I try to catch myself and be more polite (IMHO) and say, "You're welcome." Of course, with friends, co-workers, other casual situations, it doesn't really matter.

I usually thank clerks, baristas, etc. When someone hands me something that they've made, I think it is polite to thank them. Of course, when I'm spending $3.50 on a luxury item like a latte, I also think they should be thanking me back...

jetydosa
11-11-2011, 09:31 PM
I work for an extremely customer service driven company, and in our call center our reps are told to absolutely NOT say "no problem." I even asked about this, mgt says they never want to have the customer to consider they COULD have been a problem (or words to that effect). Our reps ALWAYS say, "you're very welcome" or "my pleasure." They are scored on this.

jcground
11-11-2011, 09:35 PM
IMO, the sincerity of the exchange is more important than the words that are used.

"Thank you," when said flippantly or sarcastically, is no thanks at all.

"No problem" is a great response if it's well intended. It doesn't need to be "You're welcome."

hamstrat
11-11-2011, 09:35 PM
In some retail establishments I'm happy to get any kind of response that is not a grunt, or "yep".

I think bringing up etiquette topics are always good for a laugh here. The thread about "do you take your hat off in a restaurant?" was pretty damn funny. It seems that there are many people in this world that were brought up with no manners whatsoever. I don't blame the offender, just those that failed to teach basic manners.

I'm thinking about starting a thread "Do you stand up and reach down the front of your pants and scratch your balls when you are at a business meeting?".

tonejunky
11-11-2011, 09:36 PM
Any type of conversation that doesn't make much grammatical sense if you pick it apart, can seem slightly annoying and not ideal to me.. but I'm not offended by usual 'automatic' responses.

one of the funniest examples to me is when one person says "How's it going?" and the other replies "How's it going?"

greenlander
11-11-2011, 09:39 PM
Thank you!!! This pisses me off to no end. When one of these creeps says "no problem" to me I say "why would it be a problem"? That really knocks them off their game plan.

Creeps? Little harsh, no? FYI: try not to display that kind of pissed off attitude towards food service workers, otherwise their "game plan" will be adding a little Fromunda Cheese to your diet.

mountain blues
11-11-2011, 09:50 PM
'No problem' doesn't bother me in the least. Now, the whole 'yeah, no...' thing? Nails on a chalkboard to my brain...

zzmoore
11-11-2011, 10:13 PM
Maybe it is a generational thing, but when did "No problem" replace saying "You're welcome"? Does this come from the updated Emily Post book of etiquette.

I go into a Starbucks pretty much every day (yeah, sad I know) and 98 times out of 100, the response to my "thank you" is "no problem". Maybe this is in their training manual? WTF????

Am I out of touch???
Would you like a link to the current OCD thread.?
It would be no problem......

Csapo
11-11-2011, 10:27 PM
Would you like a link to the current OCD thread.?
It would be no problem......

No thank you. I've never been a real fan of Fulltone pedals...

NewarkWilder
11-11-2011, 11:03 PM
It's generally good humored, so it doesn't bother me. At least they are making the effort to engage with you at all. See also: No sweat, sure thing, you bet, my pleasure etc.

Maybe we need levels of formality in the English language like there is in Spanish ;)

RhytmEarl
11-11-2011, 11:14 PM
In several languages, the equivalent to "thank you" is "it was nothing" or a phrase to that effect.

That was my first thought. Da Nada...isn't that "it was nothing" in Spanish?

I find that to be even more respectful than "you're welcome".

EDIT: This ^ is what happens when you reply to a post before you read the rest of the thread. Oi! :D

cpike
11-11-2011, 11:14 PM
Maybe it is a generational thing, but when did "No problem" replace saying "You're welcome"? Does this come from the updated Emily Post book of etiquette.

I go into a Starbucks pretty much every day (yeah, sad I know) and 98 times out of 100, the response to my "thank you" is "no problem". Maybe this is in their training manual? WTF????

Am I out of touch???

Seems like they should be saying "Thank you" to you, then you can set the example by saying "You're welcome."

When I was a teenager, working at a gas station, the rule was to ALWAYS say thank you to the customer. Usually I didn't mind too much, but being a young punk and having a dislike of adults in general, it kinda got on my nerves, and sometimes I'd skip it. Maybe it's age-related. But in general, common courtesy seems to be somewhat unfashionable these days. :boxer

pbradt
11-11-2011, 11:39 PM
As long as folks are complaining here, what's "edicate"?

If ya don't know by now, don't mess with it. :omg

AbstractLunatic
11-12-2011, 02:11 AM
Creeps? Little harsh, no? FYI: try not to display that kind of pissed off attitude towards food service workers, otherwise their "game plan" will be adding a little Fromunda Cheese to your diet.

He's a motocop. They're already spitting in his food every day. ;)

Farva: Give me a double bacon cheeseburger.
Dimpus Burger Guy: [into mic] Double baco cheeseburger. It's for a cop.
Farva: What the hell's that all about? You gonna spit in it now?
Dimpus Burger Guy: No, I just told him that so he makes it good.
[into mic]
Dimpus Burger Guy: Don't spit in that cop's burger.
Farva: Yeah, thanks.
Second Dimpus Guy: Roger, holding the spit.

Stratobuc
11-12-2011, 02:16 AM
About twenty years ago I started noticing - "No Problem".... substituted for "You're Welcome". No answer at all would be more courteous......

Vince
11-12-2011, 08:07 AM
In some retail establishments I'm happy to get any kind of response that is not a grunt, or "yep".


"Yep" is the response that frosts my balls more than any other. I don't hear it used in this part of the country much, but it seems more common in the northern Midwest. Maybe it's my ear and I'm not used to it, but it sounds so condescending and dismissive to me that I find it insulting.

semi-hollowbody
11-12-2011, 08:45 AM
"no problem" is retro...
The current term is "no worries"...

where you been??? ;)

TNJ
11-12-2011, 09:40 AM
I usually say, "no sweat".

Works for me.

S./
j

AbstractLunatic
11-12-2011, 11:09 AM
"no problem" is retro...
The current term is "no worries"...

where you been??? ;)

I've been using "no worries" since my 1993 trip down under. I'm cutting edge. ;)

rob2001
11-12-2011, 11:15 AM
Thank you


No, thank YOU!!

No really....thank you.

I said THANK YOU

DAMMIT, THANK YOU, and I mean it you a-hole!

Smack!

Biff!

Whomp!

Jerry Shaw
11-12-2011, 11:34 AM
Maybe it is a generational thing, but when did "No problem" replace saying "You're welcome"? Does this come from the updated Emily Post book of etiquette.

I go into a Starbucks pretty much every day (yeah, sad I know) and 98 times out of 100, the response to my "thank you" is "no problem". Maybe this is in their training manual? WTF????

Am I out of touch???

I've never given it any thought. But since you bring it up, I'd guess it happened about the same time that "pretty much" replaced nearly and almost. ;)

De nada. Actually, the eqivalent to "You're welcome" is "It is nothing" (De Nada).

I don't really speak spanish or any of it's offshoots. Please feel free to correct.

Well, I've always heard the Spanish version as "No Problemo"!http://img.thegearpage.net/board/images/icons/icon10.gif

Jarrett
11-12-2011, 11:44 AM
I never really thought about until my daughter started texting it back to me when I told her thank you. I told her to use "yw" How's that for a hip dad? :D

Curt
11-12-2011, 11:55 AM
I'm still trying to figure out why some people actually say "thank you" to a cop after he hands you a ticket and walks back to his cop car.

Hacksaw
11-12-2011, 12:20 PM
I'm still trying to figure out why some people actually say "thank you" to a cop after he hands you a ticket and walks back to his cop car.
Did the cop respond with "your welcome" or "no problem"? :D

I guess its after the slow down speech and all that?

Bluedawg
11-12-2011, 12:26 PM
There's a cool website called The Corpus of Historical American English that allows you to get data on the frequency of words and phrases being used, going back to 1810.

Their data says that 'no problem' started taking off as a replacement for 'you're welcome' back in 1950 and has been rising in popularity ever since.


Also, in Mexican Spanish, at least, No (hay) problema '(There is) no problem' is every bit as common as in English, and gets used as a standard disclaimer for not requiring an apology or display of gratitude.


Yup ...

I guess my wife and I are the only ones around here watching movies made before 2001.

You can hear this phrase in movies going all the way back to the 30s ...

before that you won't hear that phrase .... because the movies were silent ;)


FWIW ... German for "your welcome" is "bitte' ... which means "please"

I take that as the English equivalent of "
"Thank You"
"Please" - (unspoken assumption) feel free to ask again

or

I am pleased to serve you .... or ... It pleases me to serve you


:bonk

phoenix 7
11-12-2011, 02:46 PM
I have become conscious of this of late, and am trying to always reply to Thanks or Thank You with "You're welcome." As opposed to responding with "sure" or "no problem" or "don't mention it".

Although I've said it myself, "don't mention it" has always perplexed me a little. What does it mean if you say "thank you" to a cashier and then they say, "Don't mention it"? Are they suggesting that I keep this transaction a secret? Did something illegal just transpire? Are they suggesting that there's no need to remind them in the future how nice they were to sell me a pack of gum?

The truth is elusive....

jekylmeister
11-12-2011, 02:48 PM
I've become kind of partial to responding to Thank You with "you bet"....
go figure.

A-Bone
11-12-2011, 02:50 PM
Although I've said it myself, "don't mention it" has always perplexed me a little. What does it mean if you say "thank you" to a cashier and then they say, "Don't mention it"? Are they suggesting that I keep this transaction a secret? Did something illegal just transpire? Are they suggesting that there's no need to remind them in the future how nice they were to sell me a pack of gum?

The truth is elusive....

:rotflmao:rotflmao:rotflmao

katuna
11-12-2011, 03:32 PM
I don't get focusing so much on the actual words. In writing, sure, but in person, can't you tell by their body language and phrasing and cadence as to whether someone is actually being polite and a good server (or customer, etc)? Focusing on the exact words, seems to me like the person isn't using the full gamut of senses.

The Guy
11-12-2011, 05:09 PM
ahh yes. . . social decorum. if only it could stay the same forever.

j2b4o
11-12-2011, 07:27 PM
Personally I always thought of it as a more respectfully responce. Like "no problem" is like saying "no thanks necisarry man I'm happy to do it.

DamianP
11-12-2011, 07:34 PM
I favour "No worries" myself, although sometimes I go with, "My dear chap, it has been an honour to satisfy you thus, please return with all due haste, that I might oblige you further".

Guitarheel
11-12-2011, 08:10 PM
Gotta say, I don't see the big deal.
Bet you're under 30...

Guitarheel
11-12-2011, 08:12 PM
Thank you!!! This pisses me off to no end. When one of these creeps says "no problem" to me I say "why would it be a problem"? That really knocks them off their game plan.
Well said...

Boris Bubbanov
11-12-2011, 08:52 PM
"No, Thak you!" is the worst.

Bah, humbug.

One year, Rusty Wallace (sorry, not actually a fan) of Nascar fame was doing this "no, thank You" campaign on the air to thank the fans and it was kinda a gag that year. 1996? Just a guess, I don't remember what year.

Anyway, I knew about it and so apparently did Steve Kilbey (the Church, I'm a big fan) and so they're on tour and I get these great front row balcony seats at the concert and Steve says thanks after the applause dies back and I say "No, thank You!" back and its a small venue and I was heard and he loved it. From what I heard, in other towns in the South especially, other fans were doing the same thing.

It broke the ice and the concert was a blast!

Jesus freak
11-12-2011, 09:01 PM
ALF started "No Problem". Hey, remember the 80's?