Privacy Discussion Wrap Up

Good afternoon! So here’s a wrap up of the privacy discussion!

Every week on Sunday at 2pm, Monday at 3pm, and Tuesday at 8pm we have a one-hour group discussion on a different topic. These classes are open to any and all students, but the Sunday and Monday classes are recommended for intermediate and advanced students. The Tuesday class is for high beginner to intermediate. We have 2-4 students in each class. The teacher asks questions and discusses the answers with the students, and students can ask questions to each other (and the teacher, too!). You are welcome to bring a dictionary or ask the teacher if you need help. One lesson is 1500-2500 yen, depending on how many tickets you buy. If you are interested, please check out the website or contact me directly. If you are not available on the scheduled days, but would like to join, please tell me your available days and times and I will be happy to set up another class for you! We are still looking for students interested in a Friday night and Saturday afternoon class.

Today we’re going to look at collocations related to privacy.

What are collocations? Collocations are combinations of parts of speech (nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc.) which can be used together to create meaning.

For example, “I drank a bed” doesn’t make sense, does it?  It’s grammatically correct, but I can’t understand what you mean.  That’s because “drink” and “bed” don’t collocate.

I could say “I got a schedule” and that sentence would be grammatically correct, but collocatively incorrect, because “get a schedule” doesn’t mean anything in English. Instead, you might say:

  • “Get a schedule book” (a concrete object) or
  • “Get an appointment” (an agreement to do something with someone) or
  • “Get (some) free time”

Collocation can be very hard in a foreign language, especially with abstract word like “privacy.”

First, it is important to understand what privacy is.  I have a secret password for my accounts, but is that password privacyNo, it is not.  It is private information.

So what is privacy?  Well, privacy is not information.  It is the ability of people to keep themselves or their information separate or apart from other people.  For example, if I can use a room in the house to get away from the other people in the house, then I have privacy.  If someone is always interrupting me at home, then I don’t have privacy.

So what words collocate correctly with it?  Here’s a list:

  • Invade s/o‘s privacy.
  • Protect s/o‘s privacy.
  • Respect s/o‘s privacy.
  • Have privacy.
  • Be a threat to [s/o‘s] privacy.

So what does those all mean?

  1. I found out my sister read my personal diary yesterday.  She invaded my privacy.
  2. You should make a new password for your accounts every year.  It helps protect your privacy.
  3. I don’t want you to come in my room while I am on the computer.  Please respect my privacy.
  4. I live in a one bedroom apartment with my wife.  I have no privacy (or There is no privacy).
  5. Did you hear about the new law?  The government can read our email or listen to our phone calls any time they want!  It’s a threat to [our] privacy!

So what do you think?  Do you have privacy?  How should we protect our privacy?  Does the government have the right to invade our privacy?  Are there any threats to our privacy nowadays?

Let me know what you think or if you have any questions!  Thanks!


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