FAQ

I posted a comment and it hasn’t appeared? What gives? Usually this is because you haven’t posted here before and I moderate comments from new people. I try to approve these as soon as possible, but may not always be able to do so quickly. Other reasons include: posting a comment while using a proxy server (I have blocked the IPs for many of these after some unpleasant incidents), posting a comment with a large number of links, or (on very rare occasions) I’ve blocked you because you’ve acted like a jerk in the past.

Are you a linguist? No. Although I have worked in linguistics, this work has been in the field of Natural Language Processing. I became interested in dialects as an actor, and this interest become an obsession all its own.

So, big shot, if you’re not a Ph.D, then why should I believe you? I have spent over a decade studying dialects intensely, albeit in a sometimes less-than-academic fashion.  Any time there is a gap in my knowledge, I try to be forthright about this. It’s worth noting, also, that linguists are not necessarily “dialect experts” and would in many cases be irked at being treated as such. Linguistics is largely the study of the underlying structure and science of language, and while this sometimes entails expertise in a particular variety of language, that isn’t really the purpose of the discipline as a whole. While I’m proud of having a wide body of knowledge about this kind of stuff, it’s an insult to linguistics as a science to treat it as a collection of trivia.

Why did you start this blog? Because I love the dialects of English, and have found curiously few blogs about the topic.

You said (insert tidbit of information here), and I read the opposite somewhere else.  Are you a liar? I try to be as accurate as possible on this site. To be fair, though, dialectology has elicited a notoriously contradictory body of research. I will generally include notes about errata or other things I may have gotten wrong. I also try to make it 100% clear when I’m speculating or going off my own impressions. However, as this is a blog subject to overly quick revisions (the Achilles heel of any blogger), there have been and will be times when I accidentally put forth an opinion a bit too asserted-ly. Again, I will usually add notes and/or strikethroughs if this has occurred.

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11 Responses to FAQ

  1. Mark says:

    Love this blog! Very entertaining and informative.

    This being a site dedicated to language, I feel compelled to point out the adverbial error in the posting “‘Thou’ on Google NGram Viewer”. 1st paragraph, 2nd sentence: “frequently”, not “frequent”.

    I’m just sayin’. Thanks!

  2. Nathan Melatto Santos says:

    This is the best site I´ve ever seen about pronunciation and dialects! Congrats and keep doing it!

  3. Isabel says:

    I like your blog very much and I found it very useful. Would you tell me where did you get the information about Northern England English from? I need to find information about it for a research I am currently working on but I still didn’t find a book where to read the characteristics of this accent in more detail and with a more accurate information. I would be very grateful if you could help me!

  4. James Hedges says:

    Would you ever consider expanding this blog beyond english dialect? I’ve noticed more and more of these type of blogs that compare english dialect over the past couple of years and was wondering if you would consider doing this but apply it to other langauges?

    • Chris Roberts says:

      I to wouldn’t mind him tackling other languages. You can only talk about english language accents for so long before it kinda starts to get boring. Would raelly like to see this blog expand into other languages.

    • kevin says:

      I would like to see this expanded beyond english language .

  5. Nadia Beccaria says:

    [Comment deleted at request of commenter]

    • DfNZ says:

      The finishing sentences as if they are all questions thing is called the “high rising terminal”. It is not specifically American and might have been popularised in England by Australian soap operas.

      I have only noticed a slightly Americanised accent appearing in the UK amongst younger speakers. This is a good example of the kinds of shifts occurring in adolescent girls

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