For this sentence:
- Siento decirles que quedan sin trabajo.
Why can quedan sometimes mean “you are” but never “we are”?
Is it because quedan is a third-person plural for quedar?
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Maybe you're getting confused with the conjugation of the verbs, e.g.
- intr. Dicho de una persona o de una cosa: Permanecer en su estado, o pasar a otro más o menos estable. e.g.
It's because the formal second person plural (pronoun "ustedes") and any third person plural (pronoun "ellos") are conjugated in the same way, even if they are different persons, i.e. second vs third. In the example shown, since the pronoun is ommited, and there is no context, it's really not possible to know the person.
For reference: "quedan" is third person plural if we say "ellos quedan", but formal second person plural if we say "ustedes quedan".
It all boils down to the formal vs informal versions of plural "you", which are "ustedes" and "vosotros", respectively.