“That’s mean” vs “that means”

That's meanWe often hear people (Malaysians, particularly) use the words “that’s mean” when they actually want to say “that means”.

So what? It’s just a little grammar mistake. Yeah, but if you ever get caught saying that in a country other than Malaysia, you might just offend the person you say it to.

When you break “that’s mean” into its original form, it becomes “that is mean“. So in fact, you’re saying that something is cruel or offensive.

The next time you catch yourself saying “that’s mean”, simply correct it by saying, “Sorry. I meant, ‘that means’.” Unless you really do mean it.



3 Replies to ““That’s mean” vs “that means””

  1. To be fair, having grown up with fluent English, it being my second first-language (Malay is my first first-language), I have to say, it irks me to hear people making this mistake. But my mom often told me, it grew on to people and it became a culture because not everyone gets a chance to be equally as educated. And among like-minded people, they easily understand what it means, while I, on the other hand, sometimes end up being the one who looks stupid for not being able to comprehend their English 🙁

    1. Wise words from your mum, Nadia. Yeah I agree it’s become a norm. At the same time, it may sound funny for those who are not used to hearing it 😊😊

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