"Sorry for my english"
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Weird things catch your attention when you're stuck at home suffering from a bad cold
Recently, going through many kinds of different forums (including this one) I have noticed that 3/10 relatively new posters seem to begin or end their posts with the phrase "sorry for my english". Yet I haven't had a slightest problem understanding what their message was, even though my mother tongue is not english. So why write that? It seems that it is almost becoming a "trend"..
In my opinion it's unnecessary humbleness. Everyone's mother tongue can't be english so the language does not need to be perfect either. Communicating counts, people!
I believe it is also a thing that prevents some people from learning a a different language and communicating with it. Being afraid that it might sound funny or that the right words cannot be found. Wouldn't you find it funny if a foreigner walked up to you on a street and started speaking your language perfectly and without a hint of accent? Slight "fumbling" and accent only makes conversations more interesting. What would Jacques Clouseau from the "Pink Panther" be without his accent?
I do not mean that people should not pay attention to their grammar or spelling if they know how, but if you're not sure how to form a complicated phrase or spell a world perfectly, there's no need to be sorry for it!
So, write away, don't be sorry!
- a natural finnish speaker
Kimmo, you got karma for you great post.
Bad English is the most common language in the world and no one should be ashamed of using it. And I guess that no one here at this forum is concentrating in finding mistakes in people´s messages.
I personally have had more troubles in understanding some messages in Finnish and Swedish sections even though my Finnish and Swedish are significantly better than my English. So people (me included) should be more worried about the bad language when they write in their mother tongue, that´s where the mistakes are more striking and disturbing.
That doesn´t mean that you shouldn´t try to write good English, but the most important thing is that you write and the message comes through.
First of all let me say that Kimmo's post is really interesting and also resonable, I fully agree with him.
Then, about the language in question...there are three "English's"
1) The American English, spoken in the US of A.
2) The "European English", that a Spanish would use to speak to a Czech person, or an Italian to a Finn, just like I'm doing now
3) The English English, spoken in the United Kingdom, with all of its regional nuances.
a) #3 is rarely understood by the users of #2 (and even some users of #1 )
and, on the other hand, that
b) #2 is really easy to understand by users of #1 and #3
--> in a international environment, #2 is the best choice, if quality is not that low.
In the English language Forums here at FSN, we use #2, so that's really good
Quality isn't low at all here, in my opinion, and I agree with Kimmo when he says that all those "sorry for my English" remarks are pure though unnecessary humbleness
PS: Kimmo you got karma from me as well!
Thanks for the nice comments guys!
Yes indeed, it´s not solely happening here at FsNordic but also all over the Internet. My guess is that it has to be somekind of a trend like already mentioned because seriously, if English is NOT your mother tongue then who gives a *hit as long you are understood. However, you have to focus what you write if you are not fluent in English language since language barrier will be always there and those people who´s native language is English might get confused. Don´t worry, they´ll let you know
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