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Sad News from Blighty

Posted By: Father Steve

Sad News from Blighty - 09/17/05 02:38 PM

The 17 September Telegraph reports the results of the GCSE exam in the Mother Country. 31,036 teenagers took the exam and demonstrated an abysmal grasp of written English. Some highlights:

The use of "gonna, aint, wanna and shouda"
The use of slang and street language
The failure to use a capital letter for the first person pronoun.
The use of text messaging spelling, e.g. m8 and u.
The lack of proper paragraphing.
The confusion of homophones (their, there, they're)
The absence or misuse of the apostrophe

This is further proof that the descriptivists are winning and that the prescriptivists are elitist obstructionist dinosaurs.

Posted By: Faldage

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/17/05 06:28 PM

The descriptivists aren't winning. We're the sports casters. Y'all are the umpires. You aren't losing. Or mehbe i shouda sed loosing.

Posted By: musick

Me tarzan, you jane - 09/17/05 07:21 PM

Or mehbe i shouda sed loosing

Hey, HEY!!!!

...and the wrest are bawl players?

Posted By: TEd Remington

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/17/05 08:37 PM

Eye wrest mai k's.

Prescriptivists RULE. Because the descriptivists are all flipping burgers at Mickey D's.

Posted By: Capfka

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/17/05 09:53 PM

This, from my 14-year-old, highly intelligent god-daughter. Make of it what you will ...

heya!!:o) gd 2 hear u got mi card...what style of music is it? i am stayin at kaylas house( she is mi m8 n lives on a farmy ) wiv cows .....i watch lots of tv here coz dey got like 100 channels or something coz theyg ot sky i get up an hour earlier n i get dressed wuite wuickly so i am ready at like 6:10am n we leave at lyke 7am so i can watch tv while i am eating ma breakfast LAST NIGHT we had a hurricane/tornado thing hit us....n sum roofs were lifted off n THE HUGE AS TREES ( N THEY WERE MASSIVE AS ) WERE SNAPPED IN HALF AND PULLED OUT OF DA GROUND N stuff n THERE IS SUM HOLES TO. i woz at rachelsplace for netball but at kaylas their house woz almost vibratin coz of the loud as thunder and lightning...
newayz i g2g now\
bubi
love from vanessa


I hope I can reasonably expect that she is, at some level anyway, merely taking the piss ...


Posted By: zmjezhd

Re: SMS from across the Pond - 09/17/05 10:36 PM

Oh, so sad. Descriptivists are neither winning or losing, but they do describe what speakers/writers of the language are saying or writing at any one time, without judgment of correctness or incorrectness. Prescriptivists are neither winning or losing, but they try to stipulate how the speakers/writers of a language should speak or write. Most descriptivists I know can speak and write standard English as well or better than most prescriptivists I know. The big difference between the two camps is the excuses or reasons that prescriptivists invent or inherit to explain why one usage is better than or to be preferred to another. It's been said before, and will probably be said again.

Posted By: Father Steve

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/18/05 03:30 AM

The descriptivists aren't winning. We're the sports casters. Y'all are the umpires. You aren't losing.

Well said as always, Faldo. Your observations are sensible, rational and dispassionately expressed. Kudos.

Posted By: Buffalo Shrdlu

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/18/05 10:55 AM

> sports casters

aren't that sportscasters?

Posted By: Faldage

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/18/05 12:17 PM

aren't that sportscasters?

Depends on whether you leave the space out or not.

Posted By: belMarduk

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/18/05 07:51 PM

>>aren't that sportscasters?

>>Depends on whether you leave the space out or not.



------------------------------------------------


Cap, I'm really, really hoping that she was writing you like that because she thinks you're her cool uncle who'll understand text messaging.

Posted By: wsieber

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 05:22 AM

Yes, after all, police are not said to be losing simply because 9 out of 10 thieves get away with it.

Posted By: Bingley

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 05:39 AM

Presumably at this stage of your god-daughter's education she will be learning that the language which is appropriate in a personal letter to a friendly godfather is not necessarily appropriate in other circumstances.

I do hope she is not a member of AWADtalk. If she is, it may be a long time before you get another letter from her.

Bingley
Posted By: zmjezhd

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 01:47 PM

Exactly, nor are the police said to be winning when they arrest people for breaking an immoral, but just, law.

Posted By: inselpeter

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 04:52 PM

"an imoral, but just, law."

I don't understand. Would you mind explaining?

Posted By: zmjezhd

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 05:08 PM

I don't understand. Would you mind explaining?

I was just referring to laws that once held sway, but were later overturned and now thought to be immoral. It's a matter of ethics versus jurisprudence. Perhaps just is too positive a word. Legal might be a better word, something can be legal, but at the same time is immoral.

[Edited to add final sentence.]

Posted By: inselpeter

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 05:15 PM

>>It's a matter of ethics versus jurisprudence. Perhaps just is too positive a word.<<

Thought so, just couldn't see it. "Just" threw me off.

Tx

Posted By: zmjezhd

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 05:18 PM

Thought so, just couldn't see it. "Just" threw me off.

My rhetoric just got carried away and ran over my semantics.

Posted By: Capfka

Re: Sad News from Blighty - 09/19/05 10:52 PM

Ouch! That must hurt!

Posted By: musick

Re: Sad News... - 09/20/05 08:35 PM

This reminds me that/of the answer to "Just say no." was "Say no to just".

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