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Coronavirus is wrecking the English language
Thread poster: Tom in London

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:40
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
The problem Mar 25

Joe France wrote:

Do you not think that, given the severity of the situation, a little linguistic flexibility is the least we can do?


No. If I have to do extra work to interpret someone's illiteracy (in their own language) into something comprehensible, that is unacceptable (since the whole purpose of using language is to communicate comprehensibly).


 

Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 16:40
Member (2009)
German to Serbian
+ ...
Measuring. Mar 25

Tom in London wrote:

Joe France wrote:

Do you not think that, given the severity of the situation, a little linguistic flexibility is the least we can do?


No. If I have to do extra work to interpret someone's illiteracy (in their own language) into something comprehensible, that is unacceptable (since the whole purpose of using language is to communicate comprehensibly).


Do you know how comprehension of newly coined terms is measured? Please advise if you do.


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:40
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
No. Mar 25

Lingua 5B wrote:

Do you know how comprehension of newly coined terms is measured? Please advise if you do.


I am not aware of any method for measuring comprehension (e.g. 100%, 80%, 10%) or - better - comprehensibility. Are you?


 

Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:40
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Someone's ... Mar 25

... going home today with a note. I just knowed it. And Joe had better watch his step too.

[Edited at 2020-03-25 11:11 GMT]


Joe France
 

Emily Scott  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:40
Member (2018)
French to English
+ ...
Only natural? Mar 25

New words and new ways to use existing words are being created by situations just like this one and being added into the dictionary all the time as they are frequently being used and therefore enter the language. Isn't this how language evolves? We change the way we speak and how we use words over time, otherwise we'd still be speaking the same way as we did in the 1500s.

Chris S
Joe France
Tea Komšić
Michele Fauble
Kay Denney
Jessica Noyes
Julia Burgess
 

Mervyn Henderson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:40
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Oh dear Mar 25

Oh dear ...

Emily Scott
 

Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 16:40
Member (2009)
German to Serbian
+ ...
Yes I am aware of methodologies. Mar 25

Tom in London wrote:

Lingua 5B wrote:

Do you know how comprehension of newly coined terms is measured? Please advise if you do.


I am not aware of any method for measuring comprehension (e.g. 100%, 80%, 10%) or - better - comprehensibility. Are you?


The methodologies are not based on subjective preferences of individuals. Generally it's measured on large groups of people and it's very randomized (sex, age, education level, profession etc) the individuals surveyed should come from varied backgrounds and each of them is interviewed individually re. how comprehensive it is to them. There is a minimum number of individuals to survey depending on context, field, term, etc. Then the median results are obtained and taken as relevant. So you alone and your opinion alone would not have any impact or validity here, sorry.

[Edited at 2020-03-25 12:18 GMT]


 

Joe France  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:40
Member (2016)
German to English
+ ...
I've been told Mar 25

Mervyn Henderson wrote:

And Joe had better watch his step too.

[Edited at 2020-03-25 11:11 GMT]



I know, I'll scuttle off, tail between my legs.

You might have thought that the phrase becoming common usage among the British public would be a sign that it's actually easy to understand, easy to use in conversation, and helping people understand the action to take in a public health emergency. But, of course, you would be wrong...


Chris S
Andrew Morris
 

Chris S  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Swedish to English
+ ...
Social distancing Mar 25

Mervyn Henderson wrote:

You never know - soon "to social distance" may evolve to become "to socialdistance". Both of them rather ugly, though, I agree. Or are we nitpicking here? As opposed to nit picking, of course.


I must admit I've already used "socialdistancing" in an ironic fashion. But in the circumstances I think the two words should probably stay apart.


Kay Denney
 

Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 16:40
Member (2009)
German to Serbian
+ ...
Precisely, it's actually very simple to gauge. Mar 25

Joe France wrote:

You might have thought that the phrase becoming common usage among the British public would be a sign that it's actually easy to understand, easy to use in conversation, and helping people understand the action to take in a public health emergency. But, of course, you would be wrong...


Yes, that's a sign the phrase is functional and is doing its job.


Kay Denney
 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:40
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
Unfortunately Mar 25

Lingua 5B wrote:
...the phrase is functional and is doing its job.


Unfortunately it's also redundant; the English language already has an abundance of ways in which to express the same concept, none of them as ugly, or so grinding on the eye and ear, as the absurd new verb "to social distance" which is as bad as another recent verb "to rough sleep".

[Edited at 2020-03-25 12:38 GMT]


Stefano Papaleo
 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:40
Member (2008)
Italian to English
TOPIC STARTER
No need to be impolite. Mar 25

Lingua 5B wrote:
...ou alone and your opinion alone would not have any impact or validity here, sorry.


You can't possibly be sorry because the same applies - of course - to yourself.


 

Lingua 5B  Identity Verified
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Local time: 16:40
Member (2009)
German to Serbian
+ ...
Two meters apart yes. Mar 25

Chris S wrote:

Mervyn Henderson wrote:

You never know - soon "to social distance" may evolve to become "to socialdistance". Both of them rather ugly, though, I agree. Or are we nitpicking here? As opposed to nit picking, of course.


I must admit I've already used "socialdistancing" in an ironic fashion. But in the circumstances I think the two words should probably stay apart.


Use tab five times in between them.


Chris S
Kay Denney
 

Chris S  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Swedish to English
+ ...
Tom Petty just private messaged (!) me with a theme tune for this thread... Mar 25

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nvlTJrNJ5lA



Joe France
Mervyn Henderson
Emily Scott
Kay Denney
 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
Danish to English
+ ...
Desocialise Mar 25

I will desocialise myself from the dogfight in this topic, which is unlikely to lead anywhere, with no intention of resocialising in that respect.

Incidentally, these verbs, due to their Latin origin, would be usable in many languages.


Andrew Morris
 
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Coronavirus is wrecking the English language

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