Whatever happened to “you're welcome” as a polite response to “thank you”?
I cringe when I hear “no problem” or “no worries” in response to my thanks. It’s one of my pet peeves.
Other responses that are more palatable to me and that I can live with include:
“Not at all” is used in some cases in response to thank you to indicate that the offer to do something or an action that was done did not require thanks or was of so little trouble that thanks are unnecessary.
“Don't mention it.”
“No thanks are needed.”
“I was glad to do it.”
“Forget it” means to overlook it, it's not important; you're quite mistaken. For example, if I said “Thanks so much for helping,” I might get a response such as “Forget it, it was nothing.” This is a substitute for "Don't mention it" or “You're welcome.”
“My pleasure” implies not just that the speaker was not inconvenienced, but also that the speaker was pleased to provide the help. “Glad to do it” is a less formal version of "my pleasure."
However, when I hear the response of “no problem” or “no worries,” my blood pressure rises, and I get angry, feeling as though my thank you is discounted.
I did a little research on Answers.com to find out more about the origin of “no problem” and similar expressions. The phrase "no problem" is a stock phrase that carries a variety of meanings. Some people associate it with the British Empire and certain former colonies, e.g. Jamaica, Nigeria.
It is typically used to mean "I've taken care of it" or in place of "You're welcome," in response to "Thank you". (i.e. "No thanks are necessary; my effort was no problem for me.") It has no real meaning outside of the context in which it is used.
A phrase or idiom dictionary translation of "no problem" might read "I'll take care of it" or "there's nothing to worry about". However, it effectively means "I'm not going to give you any other assurances," and thus ends a conversation about whatever risk is about to be incurred.
“No problem” implies that the person was not inconvenienced.
In Internet slang, "no problem" is often abbreviated "np" or "NP".
It has also been used in a fake Spanish format as "no problemo."
A British and Australian variation of the phrase is "no worries". I understand that the phrase “no worries” actually doesn’t mean that the person saying it has no worries or that that person is wishing the other person no worries. It is just an empty phrase that has become popular like “Have a nice day” or “How are you?”
It looks like “you’re welcome” has morphed into “no problem.”
“Thanks for listening.”