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Language changes - do they affect you in your daily use of language?


King Tyrion I

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I'm putting this as a discussion topic because I'm a kind of a hobby linguist (I know about or rather am familiar with Férdinand de Saussure), and I have a great interest in languages in general (I pick them up quite easily).



There's abbreviations. There's new abbreviations and old ones.



Ones young people (10 +) use that could be unknown to older people.



And of course, languages mix. Like using a word like "kindergarten" in English where it wasn't an English word at first but it was adopted because there was no word for "kindergarten" in English.



What do you think about that?



Your ideas?



The usual caveat applies. Please be friendly with each other, and don't shout each other down.


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I have a 17 year old sister and a 15 year old brother. They're always using words that are new to me, or the meanings have changed.

My favourite is bae. Among the young folk, it means "before anyone else", so some kind of girl/boyfriend I imagine, but in Plymouth, bey (pronounced the same) is another word for a lad. For example, if you saw some young men in a car racing up and down or shouting out the window, you might say "some bleddy bey!", meaning they're fools.

I don't need to learn another language, English is complicated enough :laugh:

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And of course, languages mix. Like using a word like "kindergarten" in English where it wasn't an English word at first but it was adopted because there was no word for "kindergarten" in English.

I live in a bilingual household so yes, languages mix. Sometimes horribly so. I also have two bilingual children who massacre two languages growing up.

On the other hand that doesn't seem to really hinder communicating much as everyone grasps the meaning of stuff like "Don't slåss on the bed".

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I have a 17 year old sister and a 15 year old brother. They're always using words that are new to me, or the meanings have changed.

My favourite is bae. Among the young folk, it means "before anyone else", so some kind of girl/boyfriend I imagine, but in Plymouth, bey (pronounced the same) is another word for a lad. For example, if you saw some young men in a car racing up and down or shouting out the window, you might say "some bleddy bey!", meaning they're fools.

I don't need to learn another language, English is complicated enough :laugh:

English English is absurdly hard to follow at times.

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In my daily life I am bilingual to the point of using words and grammar structure from both English and my native language in the same sentence - I only do it with other bilinguals, usually close friends only. It would probably sound extremely odd to bystanders to hear.


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That we did. I was almost too embarrassed to talk in England.

Most of us are aware of the differences between American and British English, as American is everywhere (a lot of Europeans learn American idioms for example), so I wouldn't worry too much. I feel old whenever I talk to younger people, and apparently I speak too posh for my brother :laugh:

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Yes, changes in language affect me daily - personally.

As a court reporter, responsible for capturing the spoken word in legal proceedings, then producing a printed transcript of what was said, I can tell you it is MOST challenging and irritating.

In fact, it kind of pisses me off, so I'll just leave now. :angry:

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sure, because I'm not speaking Old English or Proto-Indo-European. Which would be inconvenient because they had smaller vocabularies. Or possibly I'm looking at this the wrong way round, afterall with few things to say perhaps life and communication would be more efficient.




...And of course, languages mix. Like using a word like "kindergarten" in English where it wasn't an English word at first but it was adopted because there was no word for "kindergarten" in English...



Apart from "nursery" or "play group" ;)



As far as I can tell, articles in newspapers or similar journals of the 'no such word for X in our language' invariably find a perfectly adequate word or phrase to describe X in their own language. Which is a fair indicate of precisely how double plus unseriously we ought to take such claims!



I imagine that kindergarten was adopted into American English more because of the overlapping influence of settlers from German speaking countries and of German educational practises (the spirit of Froebel lives!) rather than because of the non-existence of the existent term "nursery school" in British English to describe early years education for pre-school children.


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As a Puerto Rican and Spanish speaker, my family, friends, and I flip between the two languages (Spanish and English) all the time.

And of course that habit ended up creating Spanglish, with words like roofo for roof, fenca (pronounced fen sah) for fence, yarda for yard.

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The language changes I've consciously adopted are "ya'll" (which I always wanted to use because it fills such a language void, but never did until moving out of the Northeast) and "throw(ing) shade" (I just like the sound/imagery of it). I imagine there have been some other changes that I haven't noticed, but I'm old enough now that I don't keep up enough with what the teenagers/early 20-somethings are doing, and they seem to be the drivers of this sort of thing.





My favourite is bae. Among the young folk, it means "before anyone else", so some kind of girl/boyfriend I imagine,





Is that what they stands for? I thought it was just shortening "baby," although still in the context of a boy/girlfriend.

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I have a 17 year old sister and a 15 year old brother. They're always using words that are new to me, or the meanings have changed.

My favourite is bae. Among the young folk, it means "before anyone else", so some kind of girl/boyfriend I imagine, but in Plymouth, bey (pronounced the same) is another word for a lad. For example, if you saw some young men in a car racing up and down or shouting out the window, you might say "some bleddy bey!", meaning they're fools.

I don't need to learn another language, English is complicated enough :laugh:

:stunned: :stunned: oh. And now I know :p I see people use it all the time, but mostly when they are taking the mick, for example two girls I know often post on each other's FB wall with silly misspelled words/text language and end with "bae". And I also assumed:

Is that what they stands for? I thought it was just shortening "baby," although still in the context of a boy/girlfriend.

this. So, thanks for that Dracarya! (What a pitiful excuse of a 19-year old I am...).

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I guess the question seems rather odd to me since I cannot imagine there being anyone in the world whose personal language is NOT affected by "language changes" -- especially since by giving the example of "kindergarten" you are defining "language changes" as including the adoption or creation of new vocabulary words to describe innovations in society.



If people now in their 60s like me refused to use new vocabulary words like internet, e-book, laptop, Ebola, etc. we couldn't participate at all in modern society. Even if you hate something and want to protest it you have to use the words for it to do so. New technologies and new scientific or medical discoveries require new words, and those language changes are necessary and impossible not to use.



P.S. And by the way, the original etymology of "bae" is most likely to be just as a short form of "babe" or "baby", with the acronym interpretation coming six years after the word was already in use:



http://www.visualthesaurus.com/cm/dictionary/bae-watch-the-ascent-of-a-new-pet-name/


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Not entirely on topic, but I wonder if having the technology to make audio recordings is going to slow the changes in language by having a kind of baseline reference.

I think probably not. I can already tell that there's a different accent now than from the 60s/70s movies and newsreels and then from 40s recordings.

In fact I think sound recordings might even be speeding up changes.

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I think probably not. I can already tell that there's a different accent now than from the 60s/70s movies and newsreels and then from 40s recordings.

In fact I think sound recordings might even be speeding up changes.

Yeah that's actually what spurred the question, I was listening to some recordings from the 30s and 40s earlier and the accents were pretty wild. So then I was trying to imagine what someone would have sounded like speaking English in say, Colonial America.

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