Let's say, I want to say to my friend "don't watch TV", with "tu". The imperative negative form of "assistir" is "(tu) não assistas". But when I search this very phrase in google, nothing appears, whereas for "(voce) não assista" some results do.

Why is that? How to command to my friend "don't watch TV!"?


1 Answer 1


Well, most Brazilians don’t use tu-conjugations, and tend to substitute the indicative for the imperative anyway. So you shouldn’t expect to hear não assistas TV from a Brazilian.

The Portuguese do use tu-conjugations, but they don’t say assistir TV; they say ver TV or, more commonly, ver televisão. So in Google you do find não vejas TV (16 results), não vejas televisão (156 results); não veja tv returns 1,280 results, most of them from Brazil, some from Portugal.

  • 1
    Indeed, most Brazilians don't use tu, and even in places where it is used, e.g. Rio Grande do Sul, Rio de Janeiro, it is used wrongly ("tu corre no campo" em vez de "tu corres no campo"). Moreover, in formal language, "assitir" without preposition means "to help", whereas "assistir a" means "to watch". Again, most Brazilians (and I speak as one) are oblivious to this fact.
    – user9031
    Nov 3, 2021 at 12:45
  • 2
    @LoremIpsum, that's right. I wrote "tu-conjugations" rather than just tu precisely exclude the tu +third person conjugations (I've recently seen a map of Brazil showing the distribution of você, tu +third person conjugation, tu +canonical conjugation, but can't find it now). There's a question here somewhere on the assistir vs assistir a. In Portugal we stick to that distinction, but we don't say assistir a tv either (preposition a here), so I ignored the issue altogether. We may say assisti a um debate na televisão, or just vi um debate...
    – Jacinto
    Nov 3, 2021 at 15:56

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