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Re: Re: Correcting and encouraging non native English speakers

by demerphq (Chancellor)
on Sep 10, 2001 at 17:56 UTC ( #111453=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re: Correcting and encouraging non native English speakers
in thread Correcting and encouraging non native English speakers

Native Speakers Of English is itself a pretty broad church

I would just like to back up Georges point about this. Having grown up in Toronto, having lived in central London and having spent the past two years in Frankfurt, I can say quite fairly that some of the worst abusers of English are these 'Native Speakers of English'. To be honest the German prediliction towards saying 'Ein bitzien' when asked if they speak English, wherupon they proceed to speak in almost flawless English is a continual source of amazement and humour to myself and other english colleagues here. The likelyhood that a German or Dutch or Austrian or (in my limited experience) French person will speak better english than the cab drivers and corner store owners in North America or the Cockney Barman is almost 100%.

My point being that if asked I will correct the English of those non-native speakers (and a few native to boot), if not I wont because normally its pretty good anyway. For instance the OP in this thread was as well written as it would have been had it been posted by myself or many English hackers out there.

Also Georges assertion that anything understandable that purports to be English IS English is 100% correct. It is a dynamic language that has absorbed concepts and words from all of the nations that make up its people (English is basically the oldest documented Patois) and could stand to have more contributions made from the many non-native speakers that have ended up needing to speak it.

So if you get your button I will contribute when appropriate if you dont i will /msg you if you ask, and if you dont wll then it doesnt matter 'cause we all understood you anyway!


You are not ready to use symrefs unless you already know why they are bad. -- tadmc (CLPM)

  • Comment on Re: Re: Correcting and encouraging non native English speakers

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Re: Re: Re: Correcting and encouraging non native English speakers
by George_Sherston (Vicar) on Sep 10, 2001 at 18:35 UTC
    It is a dynamic language that has absorbed concepts and words from all of the nations that make up its people

    Yay! And what other language does this remind one of? Why, the Practical Extraction and Report Language, of course.

    The future belongs to generous-spirited patois!

    § George Sherston
(pmas) Re2: Correcting and encouraging non native English speakers
by pmas (Hermit) on Sep 10, 2001 at 18:55 UTC
    Exactly my point, George_Sherston and demerphq. It's fine if somebody will ask help to clean up his/her english. It's fine if a node is written if less than perfect english, as long as we can understand question - or answer.

    I agree with stefp that PM is a place to improve my perl skills. I agree with mandog that good commmunication in human language is important to get my point through. I suppose sometimes my selection of word might be less than perfect, associations for native speakers might be different from mine (I am near-perfect speaker in another 2 languages, and I know my english is not *that* good). So sorry if somebody felt offended. It was not my intention - not here not in any other my post.

    What I do not agree, and my point in this thread is: code just to deal with improving english spelling is not primary interest to PM. After all, you can write your node in M$ Word, spellcheck it and paste it here. IMO is wrong to complicate node submission by "correct my english" process, if we can do it informaly (without any coding) using existing scratchpad and messages. And as non-native speaker I wanted to express my priorities and opinion, so other native speakers will not feel obliged to provide feature stefp asks for. Speaking for myself, I do not need it. I hope that people who ++ stefp proposal did it for sake of discussion about non-native English speakers, and not about agreeing that we need new feature. I do not feel that somebody owes me something because I was not born as english speaker. I am happy to learn English, it opens word much wider than my native language. Also, my government cannot fool me this easy now...;-)

    Fortunately (or is it fortunatelly?) changes proposed by stefp will never happen - we have bigger fish to fry, more important features requested for.

    Interestingly enough, no other non-native English speakers felt compelled to express their opinion. Who feels we need feature stefp asks for? Who thinks existing tools are adaquate enough? Who feels it will be nice to have somebody "clean up english" before posting, and /msg in CB to check my own scratchpad is not enough?

    (and who feels we need to continue this discussion?) I believe we non-native speakers can feel assured that even with bad english, our questions will be answered and if not - /msg and node update should solve it without any new programming.

    Let's do some coding now...;-)

    To make errors is human. But to make million errors per second, you need a computer.
    (Please /msg me you find any strange english spelling errors.)

(ichimunki) re x 3: Correcting and encouraging non native English speakers
by ichimunki (Priest) on Sep 10, 2001 at 22:39 UTC
    out on a limb to correct a German spelling. I think it's "ein bisschen" -- "a bit". :)

    I would be glad to give private feedback on English if the Monk has entered something like "Please to giving feedback on my English not so good at some times" in the signature area of the post... and think that such would be sufficient support from PM.

    For the record, I love the parallel between English and Perl both being somewhat resilient to different grammar/lexicon choices... of course, that parallel is by design. Both seem to be abused quite a bit by so-called poets, too. *grin*

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