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Learn English online: How the internet is changing language

Learn English online: How the internet is changing language
Online, English has become a common language for users from around the world. In the process, the language itself is changing. When America emerged from the ashes of a bruising war with Britain in 1814, the nation was far from united. Noah Webster thought that a common language would bring people together and help create a new identity that would make the country truly independent of the British. Webster's dictionary, now in its 11th edition, adopted the Americanised spellings familiar today - er instead of re in theatre, dropping the u from colour, and losing the double l from words such as traveller. It also documented new words that were uniquely American such as skunk, opossum, hickory, squash and chowder. An American Dictionary of the English Language took 18 years to complete and Webster learned 26 other languages in order to research the etymology of its 70,000 entries. The internet is creating a similar language evolution, but at a much faster pace. Take Hinglish.

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Britishisms and the Britishisation of American English There is little that irks British defenders of the English language more than Americanisms, which they see creeping insidiously into newspaper columns and everyday conversation. But bit by bit British English is invading America too. "Spot on - it's just ludicrous!" snaps Geoffrey Nunberg, a linguist at the University of California at Berkeley. New York, a graveyard for languages 15 December 2012Last updated at 19:13 ET By Dr Mark Turin Linguist and broadcaster Home to around 800 different languages, New York is a delight for linguists, but also provides a rich hunting ground for those trying to document languages threatened with extinction. To hear the many languages of New York, just board the subway.

DOCUMENT 2: English or Hinglish - which will India choose? 26 November 2012Last updated at 19:02 ET By Zareer Masani Writer and broadcaster Today's aspirational Indians want their children to go to a school where lessons are taught in English. But often the pupils leave speaking a language that would not be recognised in London or New York. Could this Hinglish be the language of India's future?

Why Slang Is Good For You Today's program puts special attention on language and identity — how they coincide and why those intersections matter. Michael Adams is an associate Professor of English at Indiana University who studies one important intersection of language and identity: slang. He says slang keeps us sharp — and that there is creative value in the creation of new language among different social groups. "It's not just slang, but any language that's significantly different from what we expect exercises the brain and engages us," Adams says. "We've got lots of room in language to be creative, to twist a word around a little bit, or the form of a sentence around a little bit to be clever." "We are engaged when we're using slang. How Texting Is Changing Your Grammar The Current State Of Technology In K-12 5.33K Views 0 Likes What is the next device most students will soon purchase? How many schools have a digital strategy? Find out in the current state of technology in K-12.

DOCUMENT 4: Life in Spanglish for California's young Latinos Spanish can be heard on the streets of almost any major American city these days, as Hispanic immigrants mingle with the English-speaking majority. But an increasing number, particularly children who've been through US schools, are bilingual. Very often they switch between languages within a single sentence, or borrow English words and put them into Spanish, making a hybrid known as Spanglish.

A very concise dictionary of student slang Student slang is a rapidly changing lingo, and you don't want to get caught out during freshers week confusing "hench" with "dench". In the interests of preserving your cool, here's our glossary of well-worn faves. Feel free to add local variants and new witticisms in the comments. Bare Dialect levelling in Britain Dialect levelling is the means by which dialect differences decrease. For example, in rural areas of Britain, although English is widely spoken, the pronunciation and grammar have historically varied. During the 20th century, more people moved into towns and cities, standardizing the English language.[1] Dialect levelling can develop via the influence of various types of media. Background[edit] Dialect levelling is a linguistic phenomenon studied and observed by dialectologists and sociolinguists. There are different researcher opinions on what constitutes a dialect in this context.

DOCUMENT 3: Franglais row: Is the English language conquering France? The French parliament is debating a new road map for French universities, which includes the proposal of allowing courses to be taught in English. For some, this amounts to a betrayal of the national language and, more specifically, of a particular way at looking at the world - for others it's just accepting the inevitable. It all started with a faux-pas - to use a French phrase commonly borrowed by English-speakers. On 20 March, when French higher education minister Genevieve Fioraso unveiled the proposed road map, she mentioned that there were only 3,000 Indian students in France. In order to attract more foreign students, she added, French universities would have to start offering courses taught in English.

Chavs, sluts and the war of words Like an expedition to the source of the Nile, any attempt to find the origins of a word runs aground when the trail vanishes into a realm without tangible records: oral culture. As Baroness Hussein-Ece – she who was "trapped in a queue in chav-land" – will tell you, Twitter is oral culture but with records. But words have power beyond their mere meaning. The nature of language change The nature of language change Motivation for changeHomophony Any treatment of linguistics must address the question of language change. Internet + English = Netglish A picture may be worth a thousand words. But economists have now come up with an exact value for the English language in the internet age. The language of Milton and Shakespeare - or more to the point the Spice Girls and Bill Gates - is now worth an estimated $7.815 billion. Nine out of ten computers connected to the internet are located in English-speaking countries and more than 80% of all home pages on the web are written in English.

Apostrophe now: Bad grammar and the people who hate it 13 May 2013Last updated at 04:58 ET By Tom de Castella BBC News Magazine Children are again to be subject to a rigorous examination in grammar. But why does it make adults so cross when other adults break the rules? A new grammar and spelling test arrives in primary schools in England this week. It is the first time in a while that such emphasis has been put on grammar. Some of the questions will seem straightforward for many adults, such as where to place a comma or a colon in a sentence.

Why Languages Change Why do languages change? Well, there's been many theories about why languages change. This has intrigued people since time immemorial and it seems that almost everybody has an idea. One early example can be found in Bible in the form of the Tower of Babel, where God decided humans got a little too much hubris (oops...wrong mythology) and so made their lives miserable by giving everybody different languages. As science became a more dominant force in society, scientific explanations to language change were proposed.