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I am really confused with the phrase "やる気が違います" that I saw used as a Twitter hashtag. The literal meaning is: "The motivation is different (than usual or average?)"

Is there some subtle nuance in the meaning of "違います" that I am not aware of? Or does it simply mean "The motivation is wrong (or misdirected)"?

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A good first question!

It would only benefit you to be able to use 「[違]{ちが}う」 for this rather important meaning. It means "better", "at a higher level", etc., which is almost the opposite of what you were thinking.

「やる[気]{き}が違います。」

thus, means "Our/My motivation is higher than theirs/others'."

Depending on the context, it could also mean "Our/My motivation is higher than before."

This 「違う」 is used quite often in advertisement as well as in our everyday conversations (for example 「やっぱりプロは違います」).

See definition ちが・う〔ちがふ〕【違う】一-1-㋑ in デジタル大辞泉 :「両者の間に隔たりがある。差がある。また、他と異なって[勝]{まさ}っている。」

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  • Ah..... So the 「違う」 in this phrase means "something different in a better way".... Ugh.... It hard to guess the subtle context.... Thanks for the help... Should I mark this question as answered or should I wait for another question? Oct 12, 2015 at 8:59
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    @SatoriWita If you replace verb "to differ" with a noun "difference", it gets similar to other languages. For example "Ford. Feel the difference". The "difference" here is undoubtedly intended to be positive, although taken literally shouldn't be.
    – macraf
    Oct 18, 2015 at 4:00

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