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  #1  
Old November 25, 2008, 07:50 AM
Sandi Bowman
 
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Default If your product/site is international, consider this...

First a disclaimer: I know that language differs from one culture to another and ordinarily have no problem with that fact. Here's the exception:

When one is producing a product for others around the world to use as their own it might be useful if that product reflected standard (as in general worldwide) usage in the language instead of local shortcuts. An example that came in the email today is that of 'spelt' versus 'spelled'. Most Americans (and some others) would not use the term spelt for spelled. Spelt is a food product in the USA so some of their readers wouldn't know what was meant by it if used in another context.

It might be wise, when trying to appeal to a broader audience, to consider how language might affect the appeal of your product to them. A small thing but, if I were looking for a non-PLR product that was to be represented as 'mine', I would not be inclined to purchase said product if the language would confuse my readers.

Sandi Bowman
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  #2  
Old November 25, 2008, 01:52 PM
Pete Egeler
 
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Default You're "Kind of" right.

SPELT when used as a noun is a form of ancient wheat.

SPELT when used as a verb is the past participle of spell.

Merriam-Webster: Spelt. verb. "British past and past participle of spell"

So you see, you just "might" have received an email from an occupant of the British Isles, someone who does in fact speak "real" English.

The "American" version of English is what throws people around the world for a loop.

Pete
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  #3  
Old November 25, 2008, 03:04 PM
MichaelRoss
 
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Default You mean, if you're product is Not American...

Hey Sandi,

How 'bout idioms? Those words we All use daily in our general chit chat. The ones that may or may not have a clear cut meaning to someone new to the language. Such as these Aussie-used terms...

Bonza / Bonzer

Bugger

Fair Dinkum

She's Apples

Map of Tassie

Ute

Mad as a cut snake

Mob

Cockie

Biff

And so on and so forth. There's Heaps of Aussie Idioms. Some can be figured by Context. But others, as they sit here, you've got buckley's unless you've spent a good deal of time here. Spending time with the banana benders and mexicans and the taswegians - while the blowies have nothing to offer. Just avoid anyone going berko and specially at a barbie as they might try to beat around the bush even though you don't want a bar of it. And when at the rellies they might think it's a pearler while you think they're a bunch of tossers. But then you say, let's go Anna and she says bloody oath even though they're all ridgie didge and the rockmelon isn't bad but she's not one to chuck a wobbly. And your whole trip was a dog's breakfast. And you hop back on the plane thinking about all the drongos you met and can't wait to get back to the old cheese. And you take the advice to stay off the turps, avoid going troppo and remember to put your daks on before your thongs.

Now Sandi. The above is clearly understood by an Australian - frightening hey?. But I'd hazard a guess to say, you don't have the foggiest of what most of that means. And you Could figure out some of it while thinking about it, but us Aussies don't need to think about it. It's instantly clear to us.

As the book so aptly says, we're a weird mob.

Michael Ross
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  #4  
Old November 25, 2008, 03:47 PM
Sandi Bowman
 
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Default Re: If your product/site is international, consider this...

Like I said, Pete, it's Brit, not American English. I threw a few brit terms in my newsletter when I returned from jolly ol' England etc and I got all kinds of flak for it so...if it comes from me, with my name as author (which I ordinarily wouldn't do as author but as provided by) it better be AmEnglish .

Michael, caught it, Mate. A couple flew by the windshield but didn't tuck the baby much. I COULD give you a bunch of language oddities of the American Language as it's spoken in various parts of the country but time crunched now with our holiday and all. Perhaps another time.

I'm gonna fly the coop and catch a buzzer with papado.

Sandi Bowman
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  #5  
Old November 25, 2008, 06:04 PM
Pete Egeler
 
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Default Re: If your product/site is international, consider this...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandi Bowman View Post
Like I said, Pete, it's Brit, not American English. I threw a few brit terms in my newsletter when I returned from jolly ol' England etc and I got all kinds of flak for it so...if it comes from me, with my name as author (which I ordinarily wouldn't do as author but as provided by) it better be AmEnglish .

Sandi,

Sorry to burst your bubble, but Brit English IS English.

OURS (American) is a "knock off" built upon years of adding new words to the dictionary.

And.. "I threw a few brit terms in my newsletter when I returned from jolly ol' England etc and I got all kinds of flak for it..."

I can understand that. You're NOT British.

Pete

Last edited by Dien Rice : November 25, 2008 at 06:25 PM. Reason: fixed formatting
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  #6  
Old November 25, 2008, 07:15 PM
Sandi Bowman
 
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Default Re: If your product/site is international, consider this...

So, Pete, I can't use any Brit terms because I'm an American? Strange...

Well, Brits can believe what they wish but their English is not a pure language either...it's a conglomeration of Latin, French and a bunch of other imports and native to the Isles languages.

As for being British, well, my mother was born in Scotland of Scotch parentage that goes back to the original Alpine Clan. I can count Mary Queen of Scots among my ancestors so...I'm not so far removed from being British. My Dad was, as he always put it, a mongrel. That mongrel included Scotch, Duch, Irish, English and American. I'm as close to being a Brit as you can get without being born there but I'm proud to be an American nonetheless.

Sandi Bowman
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  #7  
Old November 25, 2008, 10:38 PM
Pete Egeler
 
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Default Re: If your product/site is international, consider this...

"So, Pete, I can't use any Brit terms because I'm an American? Strange.."

I'm betting that because you ARE American, your use of the British terms may have set some folks off. (Wish I could "talk with my hands here")

It's like me.. Being from TN, I probably wouldn't get many "YaHoo's" if I decided to throw some Aussie slang into my emails.

There would probably be some thinking "what???", while others maybe really put off by my attempts.

Pete
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  #8  
Old November 26, 2008, 01:15 AM
Sandi Bowman
 
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Default Re: If your product/site is international, consider this...

T'weren't quite like that, Pete, but I'll bet your TN accent is charming!

Actually it's a much smaller world than one would imagine. A lot of the terms that Michael posted were used in my home when I was a child...but it sort of figures, I guess, if you look at history, hmmm? Kinda fun to recall how it was.

Have a great week,whether you're celebrating Thanksgiving or not, folks!

Sandi Bowman

Last edited by Sandi Bowman : November 26, 2008 at 01:18 AM. Reason: typo
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