https://www.duolingo.com/cazort

Japanese Consistently Mispronouncing Certain Kanji in Isolation, like 中

The Japanese course is consistently mispronouncing certain Kanji in isolation. For example, it reads 中 as 「なか」 but then makes you match it with 「ちゅう」。

This seems like a basic oversight that would be easy to fix...just have some extra field in the database behind the scenes and have it use that other field for pronunciation, and then specify the desired reading of the Kanji.

I've reported this whenever it comes, as the "audio being wrong, but I'm a little puzzled as to how and why this course launched and is officially out of Beta, when some of the very first lessons have this problem.

Japanese is hard and this sort of thing confuses beginners. I understand how a course could get through beta while still having a few misreadings of Kanji in the more advanced lessons...but while people are still learning basics of pronunciation, early on?

I really want DuoLingo to make it a priority to fix these misreadings ASAP. If not, I think it would be fairer to users to mark the course as "Beta", as this is the sort of bug or oversight that I think is more characteristic of a beta test than an actual full launch, and I think to not label this as a beta is misleading to learners.

October 11, 2017

6 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/JOAT2B

The audio isn't exactly wrong; it's just wrong for that exercise. Kanji have multiple pronunciations, so what you're hearing is one and what you're matching it with in hiragana is another (I don't know the names of the pronunciation sets but there are two of them I'm aware of). It would be nice for them to match, but the truth is that it's not being mispronounced at all.

October 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/cazort

I know this. But it's wrong with respect to what the exercise is trying to teach.

And actually, while we're at it, the audio goes even further, wrongly pronouncing 「ちゅう」as 「なか」. This is absolutely, totally, egregiously wrong and utterly bizarre.

October 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/JOAT2B

That's what I said: "wrong for that exercise". And that kanji IS pronounced naka... sometimes. That's what I was trying to tell you: it's not "absolutely, totally, egregiously wrong"; it's just wrong for that exercise. They should have matched them up better to avoid this confusion, especially since it was released on mobile first so there were no hints.

October 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/testmoogle

I'm not sure what to think about that audio issue. I don't really understand why it plays any audio at all for those matching questions.

However, for me, the "add a new course" page and the incubator page both say the course is "released in beta" (= phase 2). Up until it released on web last night, it had been listed as "hatching" and as phase 1 (the "alpha" phase).

I haven't seen anywhere saying the course is "out of beta" (phase 3). The course is officially meant to have been in "beta" since 18th May 2017, where it was announced that the course had reached "beta" but only initially available on iOS. Then it became available on Android a few weeks later. And now, five months later, it has become available on web too.

It certainly isn't supposed to have changed from "beta" to the next phase (the final phase: phase 3 — "graduated from beta", the full "released" phase). ^^

https://incubator.duolingo.com/courses/ja/en/status

October 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/cazort

Update, it's now saying Beta for me, looks like that was a temporary glitch.

October 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/DoomBom

I have been puzzled with this one too. It is not only that 中 is pronounced inappropriately for certain exercise, I've seen ちゅう been pronounced as なか . It is not like it is a severe mistake, but definitely made me to wikipedia . So far it is in beta though, I hope they will fix it soon.

October 12, 2017
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