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I have always thought that you could answer "it's ok with me" or "it's fine with me" when you agree with something that somebody proposed, like a meeting time.

But apparently the phrase can have a negative connotation.

According to this Urban Dictionary it means:

I could care less. Usually used when someone is being overly dramatic and is explaining the extreme action they are planning to do in response to a situation that they think you should care a lot about, but still somehow you don't similar to "that's just fine with me"

Since I wasn't sure if this source was reliable, I googled it and apparently the definition is correct:

"We made our play, and I came out on top. Okay? Now, if you want to start the game up again, that's fine with me." The Italian Job (film)

"I'd never have a hookup but if that's what someone is into, fine with me." Comment on a blog post

Can I be misinterpreted when I say "it's fine with me" meaning that I agree with the proposal? My concern is that it can be understood as "ok, i don't really care."

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3  
Please be advised that I could care less actually should be I couldn't care less –  mplungjan Apr 11 '11 at 6:22

3 Answers 3

up vote 4 down vote accepted

It very much depends on the tone of voice with which this is said. It can simply represent a casual way of voicing agreement, but if you're not careful, quite easily apathy.

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1  
Thanks, but what if it is written (e.g. email)? –  b.roth Aug 13 '10 at 10:10
4  
If you're casually arranging/deciding on something, it is probably polite enough, but depends on context still. It's very hard even for a native speaker to judge. –  Noldorin Aug 13 '10 at 10:46

Good question. The meaning of "fine with me" can indeed go either way, depending on how you say it and the context.

As a rule though, just saying

Fine with me.

as an answer to a question without any other niceties surrounding it could often and easily be construed as a bit defensive and aggressive.

My advice would be, if you use it, always "pad it with politeness."

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Defensive and aggressive? Wow. –  Daniel Roseman Aug 13 '10 at 20:41

It is very unlikely in the context you've given that you will be misinterpreted when you say "it's fine with me" meaning that you agree with a proposal.

In your example from the Italian Job, I bet the speaker would be happy to start the game up again. Probably they think they will come out on top again. It the second example, I bet the author really doesn't have a problem with other people having a hookup. So in both cases the speaker isn't necessarily showing opposition or disinterest.

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protected by RegDwigнt Apr 5 '12 at 10:22

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