someone/anyone

Can one use:
1) Can someone see the documents?
instead of:
2) Can anyone see the documents?


Can one use:
3) Is there someone who can see the documents?
instead of:
4) Is there anyone who can see the documents?

Can one use:
5) Can someone run that rapidly?
instead of:
6) Can anyone run that rapidly?

 

Gratefully,

Navi

Original Post

Hello, Navi,

(1) and (3) work when they imply a request on the part of the speaker, with the "some"-form being used to show that an affirmative answer is expected:

1) Can someone see the documents? (I hope someone can.)
3) Is there someone who can see the documents? (I hope there is.)

Instead, (2) and (4) are neutral, with the speaker being prepared to receive a yes or a no for an answer.

I'm not sure about (5). A similar question could work if a request were involved:

5) Can someone run (hurry) to get me what I need?

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