[Sort of a log] All Things Communication (previously titled: the language called communication)

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Vlürch » 2018-11-12, 15:31

SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:What are some possible effects of using some rather uncommon words, does it hinder communication, or are there also many people who appreciate it because it fuels their curiosity?

It depends entirely on the context, doesn't it? If you were explaining something to kindergarteners, you'd use different words than if you were having a conversation with people you met through your mutual interest in that subject. It may be kind of patronising to choose your words depending on the listener, but I'm pretty sure the vast majority of people do that at least subconsciously.

If it's a word relevant to the subject at hand and the other person shares your interest in said subject, it seems logical to assume they know what it means (or will either look it up or ask you if they don't), but if it's a totally random obscure word that has no relevance to the conversation, isn't that kind of pointless and annoying?
SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:This is about things like pronouncing the TH as in "thank you" as a T and some more.

But that's not only "African English". I'm not exactly sure which parts of the US and UK (and elsewhere) have that as the default, but for many non-native speakers whose first language lacks /θ/ and /ð/, it's pretty much the default by default. Of course there's the issue of vowels and the pronunciation of /r/ and everything, and I'm not questioning the very real possibility that your accent includes all of the features of stereotypical "African English" since you'd have no reason to lie about that (and it could be that you've been exposed to English as spoken by Africans more than English as spoken by non-Africans, and as such it's your default), but...

...for example, Finnish English is definitely not "African" even though we stereotypically tend to pronounce /θ/ and /ð/ as [t̪] and [d], either both /ɒ/ and /ʌ/ as [ɑ~ɑ̟~a̠] or as [o̞] and [ɑ~ɑ̟~a̠] respectively, /r/ as [r~ɾ], etc. like people in a lot of African countries. That's not to say that all Finns pronounce them like that, either, since not everyone speaks "rally English"; some have the most American [ɻʷˤ] and [θ] and [ð] and whatnot, which is the "ideal", but sounding "too American", especially when it comes to vowels, is still generally seen as a bad thing AFAIK.

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 19:30

Vlürch wrote:
SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:What are some possible effects of using some rather uncommon words, does it hinder communication, or are there also many people who appreciate it because it fuels their curiosity?

It depends entirely on the context, doesn't it? If you were explaining something to kindergarteners, you'd use different words than if you were having a conversation with people you met through your mutual interest in that subject. It may be kind of patronising to choose your words depending on the listener, but I'm pretty sure the vast majority of people do that at least subconsciously.


It surely depends on the context and the situation, no doubt about that one.
It's just that for the log to be as broad-scope and general-purpose as possible, I sometimes had to make some brief statements, too :).

Vlürch wrote:If it's a word relevant to the subject at hand and the other person shares your interest in said subject, it seems logical to assume they know what it means (or will either look it up or ask you if they don't), but if it's a totally random obscure word that has no relevance to the conversation, isn't that kind of pointless and annoying?

You got a point.
And you even provided some additional input.
Do you know why?
Because, while I do value this answer of yours, I was thinking about something different when I wrote that particular post which you quoted.

What I had in mind when speaking about uncommon words was another possible meaning of "uncommon", other than the (also possible) meaning that you responded to :).

I was thinking more of words that are being understood, but they still are uncommon because most people wouldn't actively use them, or for similar reasons.
This could be like someone saying, "Well, you know, I fancy thine splendid blend of different teas".

Now this example even contains three different types of uncommon words.
"I fancy": while this possibly also is a part of the previous or even (could be) contemporary use of English, too, I only know that one as a part of (Hollywood-inspired) "Pirate Talk".
"thine": Medieval/Shakespearean English.
"splendid": Doesn't seem to be used today that much, although it was being used (informative notice only as usual :)) in one of the Sherlock Holmes series.

Vlürch wrote:
SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:This is about things like pronouncing the TH as in "thank you" as a T and some more.

But that's not only "African English". I'm not exactly sure which parts of the US and UK (and elsewhere) have that as the default, but for many non-native speakers whose first language lacks /θ/ and /ð/, it's pretty much the default by default. Of course there's the issue of vowels and the pronunciation of /r/ and everything, and I'm not questioning the very real possibility that your accent includes all of the features of stereotypical "African English" since you'd have no reason to lie about that (and it could be that you've been exposed to English as spoken by Africans more than English as spoken by non-Africans, and as such it's your default), but...

Sure, it isn't about African English only. And as for the way I (verbally) speak English, as long as I know that the person I talk to hasn't got any issue with it, it really is the "stereotypical" (but I mean it in a good way) African English, with some Caribbean elements too, also because of the reverse-borrowings (words that started to exist in the Caribbean because of African influence, and then also became a part of African English as well). I have been exposed to all of US/GB/AFR/CAR English, but as for the verbal part, I already told you what I would speak per default :).

Vlürch wrote:...for example, Finnish English is definitely not "African" even though we stereotypically tend to pronounce /θ/ and /ð/ as [t̪] and [d], either both /ɒ/ and /ʌ/ as [ɑ~ɑ̟~a̠] or as [o̞] and [ɑ~ɑ̟~a̠] respectively, /r/ as [r~ɾ], etc. like people in a lot of African countries. That's not to say that all Finns pronounce them like that, either, since not everyone speaks "rally English"; some have the most American [ɻʷˤ] and [θ] and [ð] and whatnot, which is the "ideal", but sounding "too American", especially when it comes to vowels, is still generally seen as a bad thing AFAIK.

Just FYI, I don't know all the IPA characters by heart yet. Although I can imagine learning them the same way I learn languages, i.e. without any memorization at all. (Also, I can look them up myself :)). Having said that, I got your overall message speaking of this part, too.
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Vlürch » 2018-11-12, 20:39

SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:"I fancy": while this possibly also is a part of the previous or even (could be) contemporary use of English, too, I only know that one as a part of (Hollywood-inspired) "Pirate Talk".

You've never heard someone say they fancy someone or something? :o

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 20:54

Vlürch wrote:
SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:"I fancy": while this possibly also is a part of the previous or even (could be) contemporary use of English, too, I only know that one as a part of (Hollywood-inspired) "Pirate Talk".

You've never heard someone say they fancy someone or something? :o

Not sure about that one (speaking of contemporary use).
I.e. I don't remember whether I heard it or not.

But as far as I can recall, I didn't. That's why I wrote "I only know that one as ...".
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Naava » 2018-11-12, 21:27

SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:Not sure about that one (speaking of contemporary use).
I.e. I don't remember whether I heard it or not.

I think it's more common in British English. At least the first example to come to my mind is from a British tv show: Do you fancy Billie Piper, sir? :mrgreen:

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 22:22

@Naava, Entirely On Topic: What exactly did you use that green smiley for in this particular situation?

(Disclaimer: Not "micro-trolling" you right now or anything like that. Besides, I already did that one recently to both dEhiN and you :yep: :ohwell: :hmm: :whistle: elsewhere.)
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Naava » 2018-11-12, 22:27

Uh, to show my big grin, I guess? It's a funny clip, you should watch it. Although I don't know how funny it is if you've never seen Doctor Who. :hmm:

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 22:42

Naava wrote:Uh, to show my big grin, I guess? It's a funny clip, you should watch it. Although I don't know how funny it is if you've never seen Doctor Who. :hmm:


I was especially thinking about that smiley's color. Because there also is the other one ( :D ), which is a big grin, too. But you wouldn't need to explain it further. It's just that I asked you, nevertheless, as I also would do it with anyone else in this particular thread. Because it is meant to be the most complete breakdown of communication possible (don't think that I would need to explain that b... word to you.), so I focus both on general topics and semi-microscopical details.

I don't remember having seen Doctor Who any time before. And as for the clip, I possibly even watched it right now, it's just that the Naavaesque humor could differ from mine. I for one am not very inclined towards laughing a lot because of most/all sitcoms. But on the other hand, I could laugh because of something entirely different that would be Plainly Misty And Incomprehensible to many others :). But then again, I think we agree on a particular Finnish Talking Toddler being really funny. You know... the one who says that "Mai neim is ..." is a Genuine Finnish Phrase that means the same as the English "My name is ...". He is also the one who said that "the bee which has been found dead in our [i.e. his and his family's] flat was The Neighbor's Very Own Pet Bee" :D.
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-12, 22:44

I kind of understand :mrgreen: to be a bigger/more extreme grin than :D, myself.

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 22:46

vijayjohn wrote:I kind of understand :mrgreen: to be a bigger/more extreme grin than :D, myself.

Alright... [Caribbean English Tag] so mi go so den [/Caribbean English Tag]... not asking her about the color, but you! :D Why is that one green and not red or yellow?
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Naava » 2018-11-12, 22:50

vijayjohn wrote:I kind of understand :mrgreen: to be a bigger/more extreme grin than :D, myself.

Same.
For me, :) is for "I don't intend to be rude/commanding/too serious", :D is just normal happy smile, :mrgreen: is more like a grin. If you hover your cursor over the smilies, the text suggest something like that, too: :) = smile, :D = very happy, :mrgreen: big green grin.

I have sometimes wondered why it's green but because we don't have big yellow grin, I've let it be. Maybe it's a wordplay, green-grin, you see.

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 22:53

Naava wrote:I have sometimes wondered why it's green but because we don't have big yellow grin, I've let it be. Maybe it's a wordplay, green-grin, you see.


It can also be related to a certain Teenage Mutant [EU: Hero / US: Ninja] Turtle Way of Speech.
(Not a fan of them, neither watching any cartoons, but still referring sometimes to whatever has some Language On Topic Relevance.)

That way of speech is describing things as Mean Green.
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Naava » 2018-11-12, 22:57

I don't understand what you mean.

I loved TMNT when I was a kid but I don't remember them speaking in particularly mean way. (Offtopic: Hero? They were ninjas in Finnish.)

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-12, 23:09

SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:Why is that one green and not red or yellow?

It's a pretty common smiley on online forums. I've also seen it called "Mr. Green." I've always figured it's some kind of reference or inside joke I never understood.

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 23:17

SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:It can also be related to a certain Teenage Mutant [EU: Hero / US: Ninja] Turtle Way of Speech. (Not a fan of them, neither watching any cartoons, but still referring sometimes to whatever has some Language On Topic Relevance.)
That way of speech is describing things as Mean Green.

Naava wrote:I don't understand what you mean.

I loved TMNT when I was a kid but I don't remember them speaking in particularly mean way. (Offtopic: Hero? They were ninjas in Finnish.)


Rephrasing it using other words and with more detail :).
There is a certain Way of Speech Pattern (or more specifically, patterns) related to TMNT/TMHT.
They, Master Splinter, and also others like the Shredder and the girl he raised speak in a way that is rather unique to this series.
This is about something like a Verbal Fingerprint, or a Verbal Signature.
The very same ways of speech aren't found in other series like Batman, Darkwing Duck, Adventures of the Gummi Bears, etc.

(I can elaborate on that one if anybody asks about it. Even by providing direct quotes. This is about All Things Communication after all.)

And within the framework of the TMNT/TMHT, some things (like possibly the turtles themselves even) are described as Mean Green. But this doesn't necessarily mean [no pun intended] that these words are used in any of the turtles series, they also could appear somewhere else, like those comics or simply in any advertisement of the Turtle's merchandise. However, even if it only would appear outside of the series, it still is directly and fully connected to the turtles cartoons that have been broadcasted on TV. Whatever the case may be, they (those two words, "mean green") definitely belong to All Things TMNT/TMHT.

And as for "heroes" or "ninjas", this could have been off-topic in some other threads.
However, it is far from being off-topic in this very All Things Communication Learner's Log.
There are several Turtles series and not just one.
At least for one of them, it could have been the oldest (possibly ~1988), there is a US and a UK version.
The UK version is based on the US one, but it partially has been censored, and especially the Ninja references and what is called nunchucks have been removed. (However, they did keep some other weapons like maybe guns or knifes.)

The UK version also is the one which has been used for at least one other EU dub, but possibly several dubs or even most of them.
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 23:24

vijayjohn wrote:
SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:Why is that one green and not red or yellow?

It's a pretty common smiley on online forums. I've also seen it called "Mr. Green." I've always figured it's some kind of reference or inside joke I never understood.


Also have seen it being called "Mr. Green".
And it really could be an inside joke that simply is Greek to both of us.
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Naava » 2018-11-12, 23:32

SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:There is a certain Way of Speech Pattern (or more specifically, patterns) related to TMNT/TMHT.
They, Master Splinter, and also others like the Shredder and the girl he raised speak in a way that is rather unique to this series.
. . .
(I can elaborate on that one if anybody asks about it. Even by providing direct quotes. This is about All Things Communication after all.)

Please do. I still don't know what you are talking about. Maybe it's something that's been lost in translation - I've only ever seen the Finnish dubs. Or maybe I was too young to notice anything like speech patterns, I was like 5 at the time... :lol:

Also, I never realised his name is Splinter! It was translated as Tikku in Finnish, which can mean either splinter or stick. So yeah, all these years I've thought his name is Master Stick.
And within the framework of the TMNT/TMHT, some things (like possibly the turtles themselves even) are described as Mean Green.

I didn't know this. But like I said, I was about 5 at the time. I didn't know how to read yet, and if they used it in advertising, it's possible it wasn't translated and I certainly didn't speak any English back then.

(However, they did keep some other weapons like maybe guns . . .)

Not surprised at all. :ohwell:

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-12, 23:43

Naava wrote:
SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:There is a certain Way of Speech Pattern (or more specifically, patterns) related to TMNT/TMHT.
They, Master Splinter, and also others like the Shredder and the girl he raised speak in a way that is rather unique to this series.
. . .
(I can elaborate on that one if anybody asks about it. Even by providing direct quotes. This is about All Things Communication after all.)

Please do. I still don't know what you are talking about. Maybe it's something that's been lost in translation - I've only ever seen the Finnish dubs. Or maybe I was too young to notice anything like speech patterns, I was like 5 at the time... :lol:


This log really is Very Real World :D. Things like "still not knowing what someone is talking about" really do happen many times, not at all excluding myself.

For the purpose of The Most Meaningful Answer possible I'd like you to name one or more cartoon series (any of those that are "Commonly Known Cartoons", i.e. not a Suomeksi Winter Forrest Iglu Adventure Cartoon that hasn't even been dubbed to Swedish ;) or anything like that).

Now why would I like you to name them, instead of selecting some by myself for the purpose of writing that TMNT/TMHT Speech Pattern answer? Because I'd like things to be especially clear for the person asking, which is you in this case. Intending to do some TMNT <-> [some cartoons series you mentioned] Speech Pattern Comparison.

So I'd like you to select those that can make things the most clear to you, no matter if you'd like me to compare TMNT speech to those of the Gummi Bears or to those of another series. It is only about yourself choosing whatever you personally expect to be the most clear. If I would explain the differences between green tea and [some other teas], I also could let the person that is interested in this explanation select some types of tea on his/her own, because that person just might know much better than myself what could be the most clear comparison to him/her. And the same might apply here, too :).
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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby Naava » 2018-11-13, 0:03

SomehowGeekyPolyglot wrote:For the purpose of The Most Meaningful Answer possible I'd like you to name one or more cartoon series (any of those that are "Commonly Known Cartoons"

The problem with this idea is that I might very well not be familiar with any cartoons you count as "Commonly Known Cartoons". The ones I watched were the Moomins, The Powerpuff Girls, The Animals of Farthing Wood (although I remember very very little of this), Around the World with Willy Fog (again, very few memories), and Sailor Moon (which was dubbed in Swedish, so I didn't understand anything they said). There could've been more but those are the ones I liked the best.

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Re: [Sort of a log] The language called communication: reading between the lines, misunderstandings, patterns of behavio

Postby langmon » 2018-11-13, 1:03

Comparing some Patterns of Speech from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2003) and the Power Puff Girls (1998)
(as always, this is for purposes of Taking a Closer Look at All Things Communication only :))

For the purposes of understanding those speech patterns, it can be helpful to recall that any of these quotes weren't said in isolation. Some sentences could appear the rather same way in more than one series. However, it is also about
- the combination of Several Sentence Sequences
- the situation
- the intonation
- the conversation's context, e.g. what has been said directly before it
- several other factors

A gang member: "Yo, dragon face! It's that guy. You know, the one with the hockey mask."

This is Gang Talk, and if one would take a deeper look at the whole context, one could see that it is about Gang Talk being done by a gang invented [by those who made this cartoon] for the purpose of being opponents of the turtles, rather than another gang like any of those:
- The one of Ali Baba and the forty thieves (not kidding)
- A gang appearing in a cartoon about New York subculture which would be somehow comparable to the Italian mafia
- the real-world Japanese Yakuza

Black-haired girl: "You know, super stuff."

Master Splinter, for example, doesn't talk like this at all. And even if this sentence, possibly, could be said by one of the turtles (other than the purple mask turtle, I guess) in some maybe rare cases, the overall context still would be very different.

Red mask turtle: "Nice fall Raphael. Just come on back if you want some more of that."

Blonde girl [said with a very girlish voice]: "Oh my gosh! It's always so exciting!"

There is some difference between these two sayings, and I suppose that it could be clear even without additional explanations.

Master Splinter: "How many times have I told you not to sneak up to the surface? [...] It is dangerous for you to go out openly in the world above. You cannot simply walk amongst the humans. They will not accept who and what you are."

The girls' father (?): "Girls, thank goodness you're at home."

Again, there are same major differences. Although Master Splinter considers the turtles his children, and they consider him their father, he doesn't talk to them like any usual father would do it. He also teaches them some Ninja techniques, and they do not call him "master" for no reason. He is, in some aspects, comparable to a Japanese Ninja (or even Samurai) teaching his students, which also is backed up by the fact that he himself previously received such teachings by someone called Master Yoshi or similar.

Purple mask turtle: "Where's the power source for this room? I don't see any wires."

This is the way of speech that a certain turtle who is Deeply Into All Things Technology has been repeating all the time. He also answered a certain question asked by Master Splinter ("how many times did I tell you [something]?") by simply saying "512 times, to be exact". Now this fully is in accordance with that turtle's overall personality.

This is because 512 is a Very Major Computer Number. As it is well-known, computers are all about bits. Zero or one. Like a light bulb. It either is off (0) or on (1). Now it's time for some basic mathematics.

2^8=256.

2^9=512.

If we have nine light bulbs that can either be on or off, there are exactly 512 possibilities.

Some examples:

0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0

0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1

0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0

[... ... ... ...]

1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1

And that turtle knows that very well. Because of that, he said 512 rather than 500, which would be much more common.

This was just one out of many examples of that particular turtle really being into All Things Technology. In fact, he has a much greater insight in many of them than some other, real-world, persons would have. As for me for example, at the time I still was watching cartoons for language-related purposes (not doing it anymore, nor recommending it), I realized that there was a large number of Technology Related Observations made by him that I either was only able to partially comprehend, or I didn't understand anything at all.

Red-head girl: "Imaaagine what we could learn from them! The maasters :)"

The purple mask turtle wouldn't talk like this at all. Not even the Turtle's red-head women would speak in that very girlish and possibly also somewhat childish way.
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