Both «entendre parler» and «entendre dire» are translated by my dictionary as "to hear about" but I've been corrected for using one instead of the other before so I'm wondering what's the difference.

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The meaning is similar but the preposition used after these expressions differs: entendre parler de quelque chose vs entendre dire que quelque chose s'est passé/va se passer.

For example:

J'ai entendu parler d'une affaire de corruption.

J'ai entendu dire qu'il y avait une affaire de corruption.

Entendre parler is close to "hear about" while entendre dire is close to entendre quelqu'un dire thus closer to "hear someone telling".

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