One thing I've noticed myself doing is automatically writing all my examples in 해요체 or 합쇼체, just out of habit. But it hit me that we don't have any defined standard procedure for this.

We obviously can't force all answers and questions to be universally in 존댓말, especially when the question is specifically about 반말 for example. But I wonder if it'd be a good idea to encourage use of polite language on the site, or if that would just be an unnecessary waste of time/effort.

2 Answers 2


I think this is a very good question to consider.

My take on this is that we should have a good mixture of forms on the site, provided that they are used in the correct context.

When I was (and still am) learning Korean, it was most helpful for me to see a variety of speech levels in my text book examples.

Personally, I tend to make most of my examples in the "plain form," i.e. the 해라체. Second to this, I use the 해요체. Then probably the 하십시오체. So, my sort of default form is usually plain form.

When I actually speak Korean, I usually use 해요체 or 반말, depending on who I am talking to.

I think that any of 해라체, 해요체, or 하십시오체 should be acceptable on the site, unless context (i.e. question on 반말) dictates otherwise.

  • Toootally unimportant point, but typical 반말 is 해체 isn't it?
    – user12
    Jun 22, 2016 at 21:00
  • Yes. I have always distinguished between 해라체 (plain form) and 해체 (반말), but they are pretty much the same sort of thing. Lots of overlap of course.
    – Vladhagen Mod
    Jun 22, 2016 at 21:03

I agree that examples should usually be given in 해요체 or 해라체.

Beginning learners learn 해요체 first, so that would be the form that most people understand, while 해라체 might arguably be more "correct" in the context of a reference site.

  • Care to explain the downvote?
    – 파울울
    Jun 29, 2016 at 15:20

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