ph, ch, th and double consonants

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-14, 1:16

Linguaphile wrote:
Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:I think this is a very ableist argument given that anywhere from 3% to 7% of the world's population suffers from some form of dyslexia

If hypothetically the features I propose would be beneficial to 93 to 97% of the population, would it make sense not to include them because they could aggravate "some form of" dyslexia already present in the remaining 3-7%?

I think so. The harm to dyslexics is considerable. So I think the benefit to the general populace needs to clearly outweigh that harm. So far, you haven't demonstrated any kind of benefit at all. (You've hypothesised that there might be a benefit, but you haven't shown that there is.)

Maybe we need to ask a speaker of 10+ languages how they feel about it.

That's what you've done here, actually. Most of us have studied a lot of languages.

I meant C1+ mastery. Studying really doesn't count. It is just no proof of anything, besides your interest. If you could use them effectively in all kinds of contexts without mixing them up, that would be another story. And for this, using a common convention like the digraphs in closely related languages would undoubtedly help!


Linguaphile wrote:The different spellings are part of what makes each language unique and interesting

I completely disagree.


Linguaphile wrote:Why lose that, when it's not that hard to learn it the way it is?

Because it is hard. In the case of Spanish, as I mentioned it feels like a complete waste of time to learn to rewrite what is essentially another version of the same in a different way. It would probably feel the same for a Spanish-speaking person learning French. If your purpose is to spend 10 years learning French and then another 5 years learning Spanish, then it is easy. If your purpose is to be able to communicate with as many people in the world in their native language without reinventing the wheel every 200 kilometres, then it isn't.


Linguaphile wrote:(en) telephone
(es) teléfono
(fr) téléphone
(et) telefon
(vot) telefona
(vro) telehvoń
(smi-sme) telefovdna
(smi-sms) телефон
(ru) телефон
(hmn) teslesfoos

Oh, so cool - so you have a table for each word with its 250 versions in the 250 languages you learn and think that's more cool than agreeing that as long as it's a Greek word which reached those languages through Latin it can be written the same way in all the languages that use the Latin script so you can focus on learning something else - the native words of this language for example?


linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:Maybe we need to ask a speaker of 10+ languages how they feel about it.

Why? They're such an infinitesimally tiny sliver of the user community that their opinion really isn't worth considering.

For the same reason I mentioned above - if you want to learn something, learn from those who can do it. I'd model the dyslexics' learning process after the polyglot's and not vice-versa.


linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:But there should be some kind of way for speakers of e.g. French and Spanish to communicate with each other without using English, don't you think?

It doesn't matter what I think; what do speakers of French and Spanish think? If using English works well for them, then this is a solution in need of a problem.

It's a workaround.


linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:I don't know how you can call a success something which only purpose is to artificially separate this language from Danish, by introducing changes which otherwise make no sense at all. I'd call it a disaster.

My standard for "success" is a reform which was actually generally adopted.

Yeah, I got it. Just the word "success" seemed completely unfit there, so I made a comment about it. Kind of saying that World War II was a success for the Soviets because they defeated the Germans. I wouldn't say so.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby TheStrayCat » 2022-05-14, 2:31

Woods wrote:Oh, so cool - so you have a table for each word with its 250 versions in the 250 languages you learn and think that's more cool than agreeing that as long as it's a Greek word which reached those languages through Latin it can be written the same way in all the languages that use the Latin script so you can focus on learning something else - the native words of this language for example?

Are you suggesting someone should set up a global institution with the power to dictate people from all over the world how certain words have to be spelled in all languages that use Latin script? Or how is that supposed to happen?

For the same reason I mentioned above - if you want to learn something, learn from those who can do it. I'd model the dyslexics' learning process after the polyglot's and not vice-versa.

That sounds like letting a marathon winner teach someone with cerebral palsy how to walk simply because he is a marathon winner and can not only walk but also run very fast. Dyslexia is a neurological disorder; mastering multiple languages while not having it does not automatically make you qualified to decide what the best way to teach dyslexics would be.
Last edited by TheStrayCat on 2022-05-14, 2:46, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Linguaphile » 2022-05-14, 2:44

Woods wrote:I meant C1+ mastery. Studying really doesn't count. It is just no proof of anything, besides your interest. If you could use them effectively in all kinds of contexts without mixing them up, that would be another story. And for this, using a common convention like the digraphs in closely related languages would undoubtedly help!

I'm at that level in three. But basically, I think that once a person is at that level, the absence or presence of a spelling convention such as Greek-influenced digraphs is simply no longer an issue - neither helpful nor harmful, because by that point you really know the language and no longer give any thought to whether or not it is similar to the other languages you know. Those comparisons are no longer relevant because you've internalized each language as its own thing by that point.

Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:Why lose that, when it's not that hard to learn it the way it is?

Because it is hard. In the case of Spanish, as I mentioned it feels like a complete waste of time to learn to rewrite what is essentially another version of the same in a different way. It would probably feel the same for a Spanish-speaking person learning French. If your purpose is to spend 10 years learning French and then another 5 years learning Spanish, then it is easy. If your purpose is to be able to communicate with as many people in the world in their native language without reinventing the wheel every 200 kilometres, then it isn't.

It's not that hard. It won't take ten years and if you really want to learn a language, then some effort must be put into learning how it is different from the other languages you know. Besides, you're the one who earlier said this:
Woods wrote:Of course I do not deny that reading and writing should be made available to those people too. But not at the price of simplifying more than necessary for everyone!

You were talking about people with dyslexia there, but likewise, let's not simplify language to the point of allowing individual languages to lose their uniqueness, just to make them more easily available to people who think it's too hard to learn the differences between them.
Besides, a lot of people are pretty proud of those differences between their language and the next one over. I'm just going to quote sa wulfs here because I don't think I could say it better:
sa wulfs wrote:Frankly it is arrogant to insist that you might be better equipped than native linguists to discuss improvements to the orthography of a language that you don't speak simply because you know so many languages, especially when those improvements essentially boil down to "make your language more like English and French". I mean, if that doesn't give away how little you understand about the situation here, I don't know what will. Emulating English and French, the dream of every Spanish speaker.


Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:Maybe we need to ask a speaker of 10+ languages how they feel about it.

Why? They're such an infinitesimally tiny sliver of the user community that their opinion really isn't worth considering.

For the same reason I mentioned above - if you want to learn something, learn from those who can do it. I'd model the dyslexics' learning process after the polyglot's and not vice-versa.

It's not likely to work well. I can't say this enough: not everyone learns in the same way. Modeling instruction for those who struggle after what worked for those who found it easy is probably the very worst thing you could do. (Besides, one can be both a polyglot and dyslexic at the same time, but that's beside the point.)

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-14, 8:53

Linguaphile wrote:
Woods wrote:I meant C1+ mastery. Studying really doesn't count. It is just no proof of anything, besides your interest. If you could use them effectively in all kinds of contexts without mixing them up, that would be another story. And for this, using a common convention like the digraphs in closely related languages would undoubtedly help!

I'm at that level in three.

Here you go - after spending so much time learning so many languages, you reached a decent level in two (I mean you learnt two more after your native language.) Maybe you're starting to see what I mean and won't say that it's super easy to learn to respell in a million writing conventions.


Linguaphile wrote:But basically, I think that once a person is at that level, the absence or presence of a spelling convention such as Greek-influenced digraphs is simply no longer an issue

Yes, I was talking about what would help reach that level in more languages.


Linguaphile wrote:by that point you really know the language and no longer give any thought to whether or not it is similar to the other languages you know. Those comparisons are no longer relevant because you've internalized each language as its own thing by that point.

I'm not at that level with Swedish, but there's a chance I get there one day, because I'm still learning it in spite of how much its spelling turns me off. I think I will always be angered by some of its spelling choices no matter how much I know about it.


Linguaphile wrote:
Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:Why lose that, when it's not that hard to learn it the way it is?

Because it is hard. In the case of Spanish, as I mentioned it feels like a complete waste of time to learn to rewrite what is essentially another version of the same in a different way. It would probably feel the same for a Spanish-speaking person learning French. If your purpose is to spend 10 years learning French and then another 5 years learning Spanish, then it is easy. If your purpose is to be able to communicate with as many people in the world in their native language without reinventing the wheel every 200 kilometres, then it isn't.

It's not that hard.

So how many years did you spend learning your three languages? Are you not an example of a person who spent enormous amounts of time learning languages and mastered only three?


Linguaphile wrote:I'm just going to quote sa wulfs here because I don't think I could say it better:
sa wulfs wrote:Frankly it is arrogant to insist that you might be better equipped than native linguists to discuss improvements to the orthography of a language that you don't speak

I'd say about that quote that you guys pick on each other's bad vibes and lose your temper sometimes. I think I managed to go through that discussion without calling anyone arrogant so far. The first one to write something noticeably captious was you, then linguoboy picked on that and now it's sa wulfs's turn.


TheStrayCat wrote:
Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:Maybe we need to ask a speaker of 10+ languages how they feel about it.

Why? They're such an infinitesimally tiny sliver of the user community that their opinion really isn't worth considering.

For the same reason I mentioned above - if you want to learn something, learn from those who can do it. I'd model the dyslexics' learning process after the polyglot's and not vice-versa.

That sounds like letting a marathon winner teach someone with cerebral palsy how to walk simply because he is a marathon winner and can not only walk but also run very fast.

If 97% of the world population were permanent marathon runners, they'd literally carry the remaining 3% in their arms while they run. I'd go for that.

linguoboy, what's the opposite of ableist?

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby TheStrayCat » 2022-05-14, 12:27

Woods wrote:If 97% of the world population were permanent marathon runners, they'd literally carry the remaining 3% in their arms while they run. I'd go for that.

Like what? Assigning a non-dyslexic person to every dyslexic so they would be able to read aloud whatever their client needs 24/7?

Woods wrote:Maybe you're starting to see what I mean and won't say that it's super easy to learn to respell in a million writing conventions.

Your conclusions are clearly based on a claim that learning respellings takes a significant amount of time in relation to the total amount of time spending on learning the language including grammar, vocabulary, slang and idioms. Unless you provide any evidence for this, there's little to discuss since your other argument ("it looks better this way") is just as subjective.

Woods wrote:I'd say about that quote that you guys pick on each other's bad vibes and lose your temper sometimes. I think I managed to go through that discussion without calling anyone arrogant so far. The first one to write something noticeably captious was you, then linguoboy picked on that and now it's sa wulfs's turn.

If at least three people are telling you openly or letting you know otherwise that you might be arrogant, perhaps paying attention to your vibes rather then theirs could give you a better insight into how likely your linguistic desires are to succeed.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Linguaphile » 2022-05-14, 12:53

Woods wrote:
Linguaphile wrote:I'm at that level in three.

Here you go - after spending so much time learning so many languages, you reached a decent level in two (I mean you learnt two more after your native language.) Maybe you're starting to see what I mean and won't say that it's super easy to learn to respell in a million writing conventions.

No. I'm at C1 or above in those three because I've invested time in learning advanced vocabulary and grammar in those three languages and spent time practicing all four language domains (reading, writing, speaking, oral comprehension) with other fluent users of those languages. I'm below C1 in all other languages because I haven't yet learned advanced vocabulary or advanced grammar in them and haven't spent much time practicing with fluent speakers.

And, now that I think about it, actually I can say that I've mastered the spelling of several other languages - Finnish, Votic, Võro, Hmong, and some others. I can easily spell any new word I learn in those languages and remember it from that point on. It's definitely not the spelling that is keeping me from being C1 in any language, it's mainly lack of advanced vocabulary, lack of fluency with grammar, and lack of practice.

Woods wrote:So how many years did you spend learning your three languages? Are you not an example of a person who spent enormous amounts of time learning languages and mastered only three?

Again, no, I'm not. I've never spent "enormous amounts of time" learning languages besides the three that I'm fluent in. With all the others, I've mostly only ever studied beginning through intermediate materials so I have not been exposed to advanced vocabulary or, in some cases, even some of the more advanced grammar. This keeps me from being at C1 in those languages. But, without having studied advanced vocab or grammar, I never had any illusions that I would be C1 in those languages at this point.

Also, I studied French for two years and German for three - but the spelling was never hard for me. In fact, even though my study of French and German took place only at school so it was more than 20 years ago now, to this day I can still remember how to spell the words that I know. Spelling was not a problem for me. I got good grades, learned what was taught, spelled things right, did great in dictation activities, etc., but simply didn't continue studying beyond the courses I took, which (as language coursework in American schools usually are) were quite basic. That's why I'm not at C1 level, and why I should not expect to be.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-14, 16:08

Linguaphile wrote:I studied French for two years and German for three - but the spelling was never hard for me. In fact, even though my study of French and German took place only at school so it was more than 20 years ago now, to this day I can still remember how to spell the words that I know.

Funny, I actually make cross-language mistakes all the time (like, spell a Danish word the Swedish way after reading something in Swedish or even wondering how a French or English word was supposed to be written after reading something else. So learning an extra spelling convention for Spanish will definitely make things worse; on the other hand with vocabulary per se (excluding the spelling) and expression it helps.

What are your three C1+ languages, if it's not a secret?

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Linguaphile » 2022-05-14, 16:16

Woods wrote:What are your three C1+ languages, if it's not a secret?

No secret. English, Spanish, Estonian.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby mōdgethanc » 2022-05-14, 22:00

Woods wrote:But Spanish and Portuguese are not aligned and Italian is only halfway. What I mean is if you regularly switch between those languages, you will for sure be making mistakes all the time, while if all four retained the pre-XVIIIth-century spelling, they would be almost the same language with different pronunciation and slight differences in grammar.
They wouldn't though. Spanish and Portuguese are close yes, but have many differences in vowels (a lot of single vowels are diphthongs in the other) as well as consonants (e.g. Spanish <ch> is often still <t> in Portuguese).

Also Italian is not even from the same branch of the Romance family - genetically it's closer to Romanian than it is to Spanish, Portuguese, Catalan and France. It is not as close to Spanish as Portuguese is.

I find it odd you would say this when you say you haven't studied Spanish at all. I have, and I can kind of read Italian but wouldn't say it is very close to Spanish. Catalan is probably closer.
I get you, but my concern is mostly about those Spanish speakers who do know and use English, and of course those speakers of those languages who are willing to learn Spanish.
The key thing is I don't see why they matter more than the majority of Spanish speakers who do not know English. Even if the majority of Spanish speakers did, I don't see why they should care all that much about English. Spanish is not closely related to English and it is one of the world's biggest languages in its own right. English is not the default. Why privilege English and the needs of English learners over native speakers by changing the way their own language is written? That makes zero sense to me.

If we want to talk about what's best for the majority, objectively I think it would be if we installed a governing body for the whole world that forces everyone who uses the Latin alphabet to switch to writing in IPA, because I think the Latin alphabet sucks. But that would be absurd and will never happen and would be met with hostility, because native speakers of languages don't like when they're tinkered with for no reason other than what some bureaucrat wants.
Maybe for the same reason I care about how Spanish is spelt - wishing to make it more accessible to those who already know most of its vocabulary and grammar due to knowledge of another Romance language or English (or German!).
I find this line of thought weird because I find Spanish to be one of the most accessible languages for English learners. One reason is that its orthography is very simple and consistent. Making it more inconsistent just to make it look more English-y seems counterproductive and the opposite of what you want to achieve here.
Well, depends. For me as a speaker of English and French, it is rather painful to have to do away with the double consonants, and I cringe every time I have to write f instead of ph.
This is, as others have said, just your own subjective feelings. As a speaker of English and French I like how Spanish and other languages have more regular spellings than those do.
We are in the 21st century - there is alsolutely no justification for not learning the Greek alphabet!
Yes there is - most of us don't need to know it. I can use it because I have a background in science. Most of the world does not speak Greek and it isn't taught anymore as part of our education.

It's not worthless to know it, but also you could say that about the Cyrillic alphabet. Why not teach that instead? Way more speakers use it. Greek isn't inherently more important.
It would be interesting to know more about what causes those dyslexias and how to overcome them. I don't have much experience with such people
Dyslexia is neurological and can't just be overcome like that. It can be accommodated by technologies like screenreaders. As a rule, more regular spellings are better for it. You can't make someone with dyslexia learn how to read normally any more easily than you can make a paraplegic walk. It is part of their biology.
It was a pretty civilised discussion for the most part until at some point - maybe since Linguaphile's appearance - it started to turn into a pointless argument again.
and
I'd say about that quote that you guys pick on each other's bad vibes and lose your temper sometimes. I think I managed to go through that discussion without calling anyone arrogant so far. The first one to write something noticeably captious was you, then linguoboy picked on that and now it's sa wulfs's turn.
I don't understand where this persecution complex is coming from. To me it seemed like everyone was simply politely disagreeing with you. No one is attacking you. It's just that nobody agrees with your arguments in this thread. Please try to assume good faith.
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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-15, 0:50

mōdgethanc wrote:The key thing is I don't see why they matter more than the majority of Spanish speakers who do not know English.

I think that sentence illustrates the point you're all missing in my opinion, which is that it would be better if more people knew more languages. (and to clarify once again, I mean C1+ level which means communication in all areas possible.) If you disagree with that, further discussion is pointless.

I never ever said that English is more important than Spanish. Well, it actually is the most studied and used L2 language in the world, but I never used that in any of my arguments. So why do you all imply all kinds of things I never said and use them as arguments against me? Okay, yours is just genuine lack of understanding; this other person's (TheStrayCat's) is obvious provocation bordering offence.

I accept criticism like linguoboy's that I haven't sufficiently proven that the benefits of my proposal would outweigh the drawbacks. But some insinuations that I want to privilege some people over others - based on what?


mōdgethanc wrote:If we want to talk about what's best for the majority, objectively I think it would be if we installed a governing body for the whole world that forces everyone who uses the Latin alphabet to switch to writing in IPA, because I think the Latin alphabet sucks. But that would be absurd

Yeah, but that doesn't prove that my ideas are absurd, even though it strongly implies that. And to imply that about my ideas, even if you don't find them interesting, is slightly disrespectful. And if you find my ideas totally uninteresting and useless and all you write is this kind of objection, that is useless and only creates conflict.


I could also answer to some of your other comments which I find interesting, but I don't like the tone so I won't. I've come here to discuss interesting things about languages and not to have a fight.


mōdgethanc wrote:To me it seemed like everyone was simply politely disagreeing with you.

Yes, for the most part, but there have been some stark exceptions.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby vijayjohn » 2022-05-15, 23:04

Woods wrote:I've come here to discuss interesting things about languages and not to have a fight.

Then maybe stop fighting about it? :roll:

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby mōdgethanc » 2022-05-16, 0:20

All I can say is that I am trying my best to be respectful here and have a polite discussion. We disagree; that's fine.

Of course it is a good thing for everyone to know more languages. That is why we are all here.

I don't feel that changing the orthography of Spanish will do much toward that goal, but I agree with the goal itself.
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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby linguoboy » 2022-05-16, 15:16

Woods wrote:
mōdgethanc wrote:The key thing is I don't see why they matter more than the majority of Spanish speakers who do not know English.

I think that sentence illustrates the point you're all missing in my opinion, which is that it would be better if more people knew more languages. (and to clarify once again, I mean C1+ level which means communication in all areas possible.) If you disagree with that, further discussion is pointless.

Literally everyone understands that this is your opinion. Look back at our arguments and you'll see that they all accept this as a premise and dispute that the concrete proposal you're making will actually achieve the ends you claim to champion. That's what you've been either missing or dismissing out of hand rather than engaging with thoughtfully.

Case in point:
TheStrayCat wrote:Your conclusions are clearly based on a claim that learning respellings takes a significant amount of time in relation to the total amount of time spending on learning the language including grammar, vocabulary, slang and idioms. Unless you provide any evidence for this, there's little to discuss since your other argument ("it looks better this way") is just as subjective.

There's nothing "captious" or "uncivil" about this response; this is a considered analysis of the weaknesses in your argument. Yet you characterise it as "an obvious provocation bordering offence". As mōdge says, it's hard to read those words and assume that you are accepting these criticisms in good faith. Unless you're prepared to do that, then, yes, further discussion is pointless.
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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-16, 18:02

linguoboy wrote:
TheStrayCat wrote:Your conclusions are clearly based on a claim that learning respellings takes a significant amount of time in relation to the total amount of time spending on learning the language including grammar, vocabulary, slang and idioms. Unless you provide any evidence for this, there's little to discuss since your other argument ("it looks better this way") is just as subjective.

There's nothing "captious" or "uncivil" about this response; this is a considered analysis of the weaknesses in your argument. Yet you characterise it as "an obvious provocation bordering offence".

Pff, not at all. Obviously I wasn't talking about this sentence, because as you are saying, there isn't anything captious or uncivil about it.

Keep reading and you'll find it.

I get the impression that as long as someone supports one of you's thesis, going slightly over the limits of respectful talking is completely okay for you, you don't even notice. You wouldn't react the same way at all if those slightly disrespectful sentences were against your stance.

And I don't see how if you have one slightly disrespectful paragraph, one totally okay paragraph, and then one even more disrespectful paragraph, you'd quote the only one okay paragraph and say "see - there's nothing wrong with it!" Why are you doing that?

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby linguoboy » 2022-05-16, 18:08

Woods wrote:Obviously I wasn't talking about this sentence, because as you are saying, there isn't anything captious or uncivil about it.

So what sentence were you talking about? (Clearly it's not obvious because--as I said earlier--your definition of "uncivil" is nothing like mine, so I need you to point out which statements in particular you object to.) That was the last criticism he made before you posted your complaint; if you meant some previous statement, you should quote it.

Woods wrote:I get the impression that as long as someone supports one of you's thesis, going slightly over the limits of respectful talking is completely okay for you, you don't even notice. You wouldn't react the same way at all if those slightly disrespectful sentences were against your stance.

Perhaps you're right, perhaps you're wrong. I'd like to think, though, that if my thesis were as weak as yours, I'd take the criticisms to heart instead of getting defensive and repeatedly doubling down.
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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-16, 18:13

linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:Obviously I wasn't talking about this sentence, because as you are saying, there isn't anything captious or uncivil about it.

So what sentence were you talking about?

I added something to my post before you asked.

Linguaphile did something similar back in the beginning when I told her I didn't like her post, she said "I was just talking about the p's." Why this selective quoting aandd pretending you don't know which phrases can be problematic?

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Linguaphile » 2022-05-16, 19:02

Woods wrote:
linguoboy wrote:
Woods wrote:Obviously I wasn't talking about this sentence, because as you are saying, there isn't anything captious or uncivil about it.

So what sentence were you talking about?

I added something to my post before you asked.

Linguaphile did something similar back in the beginning when I told her I didn't like her post, she said "I was just talking about the p's." Why this selective quoting aandd pretending you don't know which phrases can be problematic?


Well, speaking of selective quoting, no, I didn't say "I was just talking about the p's." I said I stated my opinions and looked up information about Spanish words beginning with the digraph ps-:
Linguaphile wrote: I stated my opinions and I looked up what the Real Academia Española said about words beginning with ps- and translated it for you. How was that uncivil?

and as far as I can tell, it was my opinions that you objected to, but they weren't meant as an attack on you. They were just my opinions that didn't align with yours.

I think you misunderstood my intentions when I said this:
Linguaphile wrote:Besides, a lot of people are pretty proud of those differences between their language and the next one over. I'm just going to quote sa wulfs here because I don't think I could say it better:
sa wulfs wrote:Frankly it is arrogant to insist that you might be better equipped than native linguists to discuss improvements to the orthography of a language that you don't speak simply because you know so many languages, especially when those improvements essentially boil down to "make your language more like English and French". I mean, if that doesn't give away how little you understand about the situation here, I don't know what will. Emulating English and French, the dream of every Spanish speaker.

The reason I quoted it wasn't because sa wulfs said your behavior was arrogant and I wasn't trying to pile on to that just to call you arrogant. The reason I quoted it was because it explains pretty well the way native speakers feel about their language and I feel that's very relevant to the discussion about Spanish spelling. I'm not sure you understood that point, because sa wulfs said it in a sarcastic way and maybe you missed the sarcasm. For a lot of Spanish speakers, the very last thing they would want would be to emulate English and French. If a non-native speaker comes in saying they can improve Spanish by making it more like English and French, yes, Spanish speakers will consider it arrogant, and that was my point. The changes you propose will be viewed as arrogance by native speakers. Period.

You didn't explain what was wrong with my post in a way I understood, either - it's vague about what you didn't like ("annoying and irrelevant things"... but to me, they were relevant):
Woods wrote:I think you must learn that the point of a debate or any exchange is not to prove the other person wrong but to see what they think and what you can take from it.

(other annoying and irrelevant things you said were along the lines of "just so you know, natives make these decisions and not you" etc.)

Do you understand what we think, and what you can take from it? The comment about native speakers isn't an attack on you. It's relevant. Even more relevant is the point that has been said in many different ways throughout this discussion: spelling isn't the major obstacle for many learners that you seem to see it as, and changing the spelling won't have the major benefits you seem to think it will in terms of helping people learn more languages. Or at least, you haven't made any sort of case for that argument that would even begin to convince me. Meanwhile, while not seeming to make much improvement to language-learning (in most of our opinions), at the same time the changes you propose have the negative effects we've mentioned about native speakers' feelings towards the changes and making the language a bit more difficult to learn to spell for those who don't know English or French. In my opinion, given what I see as the obvious drawbacks that have been mentioned and what seem to be very dubious benefits, it's absolutely not worth it.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby linguoboy » 2022-05-16, 19:52

Woods wrote:Keep reading and you'll find it.

This? Seriously?
TheStrayCat wrote:If at least three people are telling you openly or letting you know otherwise that you might be arrogant, perhaps paying attention to your vibes rather then theirs could give you a better insight into how likely your linguistic desires are to succeed.

Have you seen how politely he phrased that? "...that you might be arrogant, perhaps paying attention...could give you a better insight..." I really don't see how he could have done much more to soften his point. But all you saw and reacted to was the word "arrogant". What other word are we supposed to use though? Declaring the opinions of the vast majority of the users of the script of a language you don't even know or use irrelevant because you think you know better what would benefit them is arrogant! This is not a slur, it's not a character judgment, it's simply a factual description of your behaviour in this thread. You're doing exactly what you accuse everyone else of--selectively quoting and ignoring the real content of their objections.

I really can't improve on Linguaphile's last response to you: Our objections aren't insults or cavils; they are all directly relevant to the soundness of your proposal. Please try to reread them with an open mind and bring us questions if you don't understand the points we are making. We're really trying to help you here. You have a lot of knowledge and enthusiasm and it would be wonderful to see you apply it in a way that could actually accomplish some good.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-16, 19:54

Linguaphile wrote:I think you misunderstood my intentions when I said this:
Linguaphile wrote:Besides, a lot of people are pretty proud of those differences between their language and the next one over. I'm just going to quote sa wulfs here because I don't think I could say it better:
sa wulfs wrote:Frankly it is arrogant to insist that you might be better equipped than native linguists to discuss improvements to the orthography of a language that you don't speak simply because you know so many languages, especially when those improvements essentially boil down to "make your language more like English and French". I mean, if that doesn't give away how little you understand about the situation here, I don't know what will. Emulating English and French, the dream of every Spanish speaker.

The reason I quoted it wasn't because sa wulfs said your behavior was arrogant and I wasn't trying to pile on to that just to call you arrogant. The reason I quoted it was because it explains pretty well the way native speakers feel about their language and I feel that's very relevant to the discussion about Spanish spelling. I'm not sure you understood that point, because sa wulfs said it in a sarcastic way and maybe you missed the sarcasm. For a lot of Spanish speakers, the very last thing they would want would be to emulate English and French. If a non-native speaker comes in saying they can improve Spanish by making it more like English and French, yes, Spanish speakers will consider it arrogant, and that was my point. The changes you propose will be viewed as arrogance by native speakers. Period.

So my problem with this is that you're saying you couldn't agree more with someone who says:

- that what I think is arrogant (directly qualifying me as something negative that he/she has no proof for, and which might be completely untrue (it might also be that I'm right and he/she is arrogant, regarless of what all of you think)

- that what I am suggesting has one only purpose which is to make Spanish like English and French, which is not true, because the idea has never been to make the language like French or English but to adopt one convention for a certain set of words for all those languages, which has indeed been part of Spanish itself and Latin where Spanish came from, for purposes completely different to making Spanish like English or French. So this is putting words in my mouth, and it is also disrespectful because I laid out other arguments, but for some reason not only they are not understood (which is okay), but are now denied and replaced with things I never said (which is not okay).

And also I don't get what kind of behaviour that is to pick up on somebody else's inappropriate attacks and say "I'm happy he said it cause I wouldn't but now I will." No, you shouldn't say it and you shouldn't support that.

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Re: ph, ch, th and double consonants

Postby Woods » 2022-05-16, 20:05

linguoboy wrote:Have you seen how politely he phrased that? "...that you might be arrogant, perhaps paying attention...could give you a better insight..." I really don't see how he could have done much more to soften his point.

It's the intention, not the words.


linguoboy wrote:You're doing exactly what you accuse everyone else of--selectively quoting and ignoring the real content of their objections.

I'm defending my idea. I read all the content and agree with some of the points, also when I don't mention them and also when they go against my idea sometimes. I don't say that somebody said something he didn't say or meant something he didn't mean, or insinuate this in my jokes, or call them arrogant for thinking otherwise to me.


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