As my regular readers will know, I am fascinated by languages, so I have noticed a strange shift in the BBC’s reporting.
When I was a student of the USSR and Russian in the seventies, we talked about THE Ukraine, THE Caucasus et cetera. Now, as a Russian language speaker, I know that Russian does not have articles (a, an the), so when I heard them dropped in reference to the recent troubles there, it was a surprise more than a shock.
However, last night, I heard a UK BBC reporter refer to THE United Kingdom as ‘United Kingdom’.
Is this a new trend or just sloppiness?
To my mind, WE, in English, have articles, if you want to be taken seriously, bloody well use them, plonkers!
** Update: I just heard a reporter referring to ‘Muslim Brotherhood’ not ‘THE Muslim Brotherhood’, yet he used articles correctly elsewhere in his report. It’s catching on! **
On a different subject, I want to promote the advertising power of this website, I cannot believe that so few people have picked up on it.
Anyway, 90% of readers are American, that means 70k page views a month, and the next best are UK at 17,788 and France at 17,648 per month.
Today, the sixteenth, Google has sniffed around 3,846 times and the average for a human visitor has been 359 secs a visit, which is high. It translates to 22.34 pages a visit.
I was just talking to ‘my daughter’, sorry, I still don’t know what to call her even after ten years, although I’ve heard she calls me ‘Dad’ generally, but Owen to my face. We will iron that one out tomorrow.
Anyway, I told her that her English was worse than it had ever been even after three years in university. She said that the reason was that she was scared of making mistakes and people laughing at her now that she was older.
This is the root cause of intelligent Thais not getting on – it’s a national tragedy!
They are scared that people will laugh at them.
It reveals a high level of national insecurity.
‘Asian Shorts’ is now 100% full and I have pencilled in ‘Paranormal Shorts’ for next month, so if you have a story for it, send it as soon as you like, or start writing one if you haven’t.
Get a free copy of the Asian Shorts audiobook here: Asian Shorts free audiobook
All the best,
PS: if you like linguistics, listen to this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b05tl3jm
Podcast: Linguistic Sloppiness