1. Sato Moughalian says

    That was a very funny piece in The New York Times today–thank you! However, it is one generation behind the curve. Equally funny, if not more so, because of the added incompetence of the beta aspect, are the “auto corrections” that Siri makes while attempting to take our dictation. I hope you will give us the pleasure of joshing on those some time. See how many variations she finds on the word “rehearsal.” “Reversal,” “her thistle,” “her girdle,” “her turtle,” “remorseful”…it starts to get very meta…especially if one is a musician.

  2. Birgitta Hybinette says

    Haha! What a funny article. And how terrible. (First of all: the mistakes I will make are entirely my own, English is not my mother tongue) Above all I feel bewildered about the fact that very few people take notice of what is happening. Bad schools here and there in the Western world, what the heck! You can’t just suddenly decide to “improve” school when the whole society around it does not give a damn about the language (among other skills). Funny in an era where “communication” equals God.
    In my country (Sweden) there is also a habit of speaking in some kind of directly-translated English – taking away all the Swedish idiomatic expressions and replacing them with not-proper-soundning sentences. Well, at least it won’t be a problem to Google-translate between our two languages. It will sound strange to old people though and it will not enable young Swedes to read texts in their own language that are just a few decades old.

    I am so happy to read an intelligent and witty text about this huge problem. It is sort of the tower of Babel, only the other way around. This time we won’t understand althoug we will be speaking one language. A useless one.

  3. gleick says

    The examples keep coming, and I can’t keep up, but I particularly love this one:

    she texted yesyesyes into her device and it wooshed off as hesitates.

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