https://www.duolingo.com/breadroll04

What's your Unpopular Language Opinions?

Questions in the title, what opinions about language learning that might start a heated debate :) for example: Benny Lewis is a fake polyglot , French isn't easy, you can't learn Japanese from anime...

1 week ago

249 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/Songve
Songve
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Vietnamese is so difficult, it is impossible. Even Vietnamese themselves say that. There are 6 tones and crazy consonants.

On the other hands: no genders, no "a" and "the" articles, no plurals, no goofy verb endings as it is 100% non-inflective (no word changes form), tenses can be learned in just a few minutes, you can skip words if context gives you meaning, same alphabet as here, spelling consistent and not crazy like English, you don't need no stinkin' grammar and vocabulary highly logical.

I have read and have been told you can become fluent in 3 months. In a couple of weeks I am going to test that by giving myself an additional 3 months for a total of 6 months living in Vietnam with locals. During that time I will trade in 1 Duolingo and a handful of helpful people in sentence discussions for 95 million Vietnamese who will be my teachers 24/7.

BTW, despite all my complaining about inconsistencies and errors of the Vietnamese course here, local Vietnamese that I hang around with in Central Florida have remarked that my Vietnamese has improved a lot for the past few months. Duolingo is an important tool in my Language Toolbox.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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I am considering moving to Vietnam and will want to learn the language if I do. I figure my pronunciation will probably be terrible, but I'll carry around a pad and paper and write down what I need to say if it gets too bad!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Songve
Songve
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You could easily get by without learning the language but then you would miss a large part of the experience. Lonely Planet puts out a useful pocket phrasebook that can get you started.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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I could never move to a country without at least trying to learn the language. It would violate my personal ethic.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Songve
Songve
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Learning about the history is an essential component. I suggest reading the Declaration of Independence that starts with "All men are created equal. They are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness"

Did I make a mistake by quoting the US Declaration of Independence? Nope. This is how the Vietnam Declaration of Independence starts. It is an interesting historical document as is the circumstances surrounding it. Most people don't know Ho Chi Minh was supported, trained and financed by the US during WWII.

http://www.unc.edu/courses/2009fall/hist/140/006/Documents/VietnameseDocs.pdf

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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It's not entirely true that no word changes form, consider một/mốt, bốn/tư and năm/lăm. Also, there is grammar, it's just so insanely complicated you can't see it half the time. It's why tôi bị ghét bạn and tôi bị bạn ghét mean completely different things (the former meaning that I used to like you, but over time I came to hate you, the latter that I'm hated by you. The reason that I use hate is that it's apparently the only verb in the whole language that allows the former construction). Ah, have they taught you cute language yet? Rất hó nhóe

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/phopkins1
phopkins1
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While I love KPop,listening to it will not improve your Korean grammar at all no matter how ARMY you are

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/breadroll04

True i'm a kpop fan and I think the Kpop Korean learning community is toxic, what's your opinion on Anime fans learning Japanese from anime

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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My opinion on that is that the Korea lovers have replaced the "otaku" of my generation as the dominant Asiaphile, so we won't have to ask that question much longer.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Djedida
Djedida
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I think choice of Asian language is mostly gendered: more males go for Japanese due to anime, more females go for Korean due to Kpop and Kdrama.

There's definitely an overlap of people who consume both media though.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

kpop is amazing wonderful and i love it soooo much yet im only learning chinese not korean what is happening

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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what is "otaku"?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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"Otaku" is a slur for anime fans. The ninety's and early 2000's in America had a lot of children's and teen entertainment imported from Japan, making a generation of people in love with everything Japan, and something derogatory was needed for guys like teenage me who dialed it to eleven.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SpaceDoggi
SpaceDoggi
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I'm responsible for teaching my children two katakana characters: ト and ロ.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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Camilla-danesa, they're "to" and "ro", the two katakana characters/letters/syllables needed to write "totoro"

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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Ah, I see now..yes it is very much same in Canada where I live..We still have LOTs of Japanese anime fans..mostly very young people.. Thank you for explaining!:-)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Camilla-danesa
Camilla-danesa
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SpaceDoggi, what do those two characters mean?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SpaceDoggi
SpaceDoggi
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carbsrule has it. Those two characters appear in the opening credits to "My Neighbor Totoro". Why not teach them?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/phopkins1
phopkins1
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Otaku is a new term, for me.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/phopkins1
phopkins1
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@breadroll04, Anime is the only way to learn japanese imo

Anime grammar for begginers Memrise Course

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dcharcos

true. I'm a kpop fan who is amazed on th amount of toxic fans.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DragonPolyglot
DragonPolyglot
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At least expand your music horizons if you want to get really good at Korean. And don’t focus only on music. Try to read Korean and watch Korean TV too.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Emma_L_a
Emma_L_a
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Or improve your pronunciation, or make you Korean in anyway. Upvote!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ryanaissance

Sometimes I think I'm the only one with an interest in Korean and Japanese that doesn't like (rather never heard) kpop nor Japanese comic books/anime.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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You're not alone. K-Pop is kinda fun in small doses but I'm not particularly interested in manga/anime (long term Japanese learner, also started learning Korean 9 years ago but haven't really put any effort in).

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

I LOVE KPOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! do you know bts?! i love bts!!!!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

Don't know if this is unpopular, but "Every child should have the opportunity to study at least one foreign language to near fluency at school (ie for free)". As a corollary, learning lists such as numbers, colours, or animals is NOT learning a language.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Merakiulus
Merakiulus
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My 10 Unpopular Opinions

  1. Russian and Ukrainian are as beautiful as Spanish, French, Italian etc.

  2. My native languages; English and Irish are interesting but really hideous languages.

  3. German sounds very intelligent.

  4. Asian languages are easy (in comparision to most other languages)

  5. Pimsleur and Babble are awful

  6. People who only speak English are lazy.

  7. Flashcards are effective but the novelty wears off very quickly.

  8. I don't like the sound of most Bantu languages.

  9. Most variants of Arabic are beautiful, Hebrew and Moroccan sound meh.

  10. Learning similar languages at once works well, but only over time and practice.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaurianaB
LaurianaB
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Merakiulus

I agree with you 100 percent! Especially on the first one. Slavic languages are so lyrical...

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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  1. Slavic languages sound nice to me, too!

  2. English is wonderful and the more I study other languages and teach it to other people the more I fall in love with my native tongue. That being said... I don't recommend other people study it. I think we should let it retreat back to it's native community and allow something more consistent to take it's place.

  3. which asian languages. I hear Khmer, Tagalog, and Bahasa Indonesia aren't too bad, but Korean and Chinese (pick one) are rough.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Merakiulus
Merakiulus
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Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese. I haven't come across a far east Asian language that apart from pronunciation/spelling (i.e. the very basics) seems difficult.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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That's great for you, honestly! I wish it was the same for most other people, because I put two years into Japanese in college and I've been living in Korea for several years and I can't say much in either language.

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

"apart from pronunciation/spelling" - so you cannot speak or write the language - but otherwise it is "easy"? Actually I loved learning and writing Mandarin characters (which originally were NOT spoken) but the pain of the tones drove me from class.

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Elda_Mengisto
Elda_Mengisto
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  1. That is a fact, darling!

  2. Never thought about it that way. English I'm so exposed to that I don't know the intricacies of it and how hard it would be to learn. Irish sounds interesting, however.

  3. Kind of, depends on the speaker.

  4. Depends on the language. Based on my experience in Mandarin, the learning curve is initially rough, but the grammar is quite easy, once you get over how many ways you use 了 (a particle used to indicate completion).

5, 7, and 8: No opinion on either of them.

  1. I would like to say that, but that really depends on how one grew up. Is it because they aren't interested in languages in general, or do they not expect to work internationally? I agree that the United States needs to improve foreign language education in schools, but what could move people to start learning even though they may not work abroad.

  2. Agree with Arabic being beautiful, noooo to Hebrew sounding meh. That is something I cannot get behind.--it's really nice.

  3. I'm learning French and Romanian right now on Duolingo; they are different enough so I don't get confused, but I could sense the similarities here and there.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

English is very hideous and a complete nightmare to learn, it's hard for natives like me, even. Asian languages are VERY hard though, especially Chinese. And people who are only interested in English are close-minded.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sencez
Sencez
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The thing is you can mess up English a lot and it still makes sense (I.e using the wrong tense or conjugating to the tense wrong) however the spelling I don’t like

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Emma_L_a
Emma_L_a
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Very true.

For example;

Correct Answer:

During class, Cole and I were talking about Melanie.

How most people say it (yet still makes sense):

During class, Cole and I was talking about Melanie.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DragonPolyglot
DragonPolyglot
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  1. I'm not impressed when people learn all the major Romance and/or Germanic and/or Slavic languages at a conversational level just so they can claim to speak more than 4 languages. (the "cheap polyglot", because they want to save time by learning similar languages). However, I think it's pretty cool if you are actually very passionate about the language family and you want to/can speak 3+ of the languages in the family fluently, or add rarer languages in the mix.

  2. The Arabic and Hebrew scripts are easy to learn! They just don't bother with vowels in daily life and have some different pronunciations.

  3. Esperanto is one of the hardest languages I have tried to learn! Like seriously, there is so many grammar rules that are allowed you need to learn quite a bit to be C1 in the language. Plus all the non-universal sounds!

  4. Bilinguals and trilinguals can be considered as polyglots. Probably "low tier" polyglots but they still speak more than one language (one or two many more than monolinguals.)

  5. Languages with different grammar systems aren't hard conceptually. Once you understand the grammar, every thing else is easier. Words are harder, haha... (me with Indonesian)

Debate away.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/dinnernugget
dinnernugget
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Especially when the person who speaks French, Italian, and Portuguese is a native Spanish speaker (for example). Speaking three other near-dialects of your native language plus the universal language of English is really not impressive. My goal of being reasonably fluent in at least one Romance, Germanic, and Slavic language was inspired by this. And I'm almost there! Then, on to an Asian one to REALLY challenge myself like never before.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Vannaty

I don't see why those that learn similar languages should be degraded? I hope to learn Spanish and Portuguese and French. It won't be as difficult as learning radically different languages but it will still open the door to new skills, and cultures. It is still far more effort than the average native English speaker puts in. I would think it is still impressive, even if it isn't as impressive as learning Hebrew and Spanish.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DragonPolyglot
DragonPolyglot
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Like I said, if people actually love the language family, I don’t think it’s a bad thing if they want to learn multiple languages of the same family to a high level. However, it is a common trend for so-called “Internet polyglots” to learn all the major Romance and Germanic languages to just a high enough level to make a video speaking a basic paragraph or two in each language. If you watch many of these videos, it becomes apparent that most of the people learn the basics of as many easier languages as possible and have a harder time expanding beyond that. Learning any language well is hard, but it’s easy to get started in multiple languages that are very similar, which is why I think it’s more impressive to learn fewer languages well than more languages to a lower level.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

I agree about the Arabic script (providing we aren't talking handwriting or art lettering). Very logical and easy to remember the morphing. Knowing what vowels should go in to pronounce the words however takes a bit longer!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpells
MissSpells
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The Hebrew alphabet is really easy too! (easier than Arabic from what I have read). Actually, I think Hebrew in general is easy and its difficulty is way overated.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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Poly means many. Would you say that a person with two apples has 'many apples'?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DragonPolyglot
DragonPolyglot
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A Warlpiri person would say “yes”.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nomadic.
nomadic.
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all indo-europan languages are difficult as hell and i feel like master yoda when i start to talk

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Djedida
Djedida
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-Esperantists are zealots and their claims on benefits and uses of Esperanto are mostly dogma.

-Difficulty of Slavic languages is greatly exaggerated.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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"Esperantists are zealots" is not an unpopular opinion.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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"I agree," isn't enough. Take many lingots while I find something between, "I full heartedly agree," and "Will you marry me?"

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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a big LOL ..to your comment..:-)))

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaurianaB
LaurianaB
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Difficulty of Slavic languages is greatly exaggerated.

Yup. I learned to curse in Slovak in under a week and have been mistaken for a native more than once (EDIT: in what I can actually say, for pronunciation reasons, and from hearing it constantly).

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

And how long before you could discuss (say) politics or review a play - using full sentences (with or without swearing). If you ask someone what they think of the current laws on (say) homosexuality - can you understand their answer? And can you read and write? All of these would need to be ticked off in my mind before I would consider someone able to be "mistaken for a native".

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaurianaB
LaurianaB
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Ahahaa, Judit....I don't intend to be fluent in Slovak (at least for now), and there is nothing wrong with having fun or mastering basics, which I have done in an upwards of 10 languages.....well, lepšia je hodinka na rozmýšľanie, ako rok na banovanie. But I estimate that I would be able to converse about the subjects you mentioned in a year or two, given that it has a lot of mutual intelligibility with languages I have already experienced/experimented with. I can listen to it in a conversation and understand 60-70 percent of what's going on. Same with Bosnian, etc.
I can't really tell how triggered you are, LOL.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

Try things out is great. Go for it. And I am happy your pronunciation is good - that is a gift. But I don't think I over reacted assuming "mistaken for a native" is close to saying "fluent". Why is this a problem? Because the new learners come in assuming if you can become fluent in weeks so can they. Not only is it unrealistic but they may then blame themselves if they cannot achieve it - and give up.

Actually DL, does its own version of this upping the levels very fast at the start. You can get onto level 4 in under an hour - then it gets harder and harder to earn the next level.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaurianaB
LaurianaB
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Ahhh Judit....I totally agree, to be honest. And yet I don't think being mistaken for a native is synonymous with being fluent....it depends on how much the other person heard before they made an assumption. For example, I fired off a few short phrases in conversational Slovak with a relaxed attitude, but I save the "vocal waterfall" and "akkkhhhh" sound between words and stalling for my dearest friends...the things I have practiced to accuracy, though, I can say automatically.

In severe concurance with you, I detest and resent when a program acts as if you can be hanging with the native speakers incognito in a week. And personally, I get offended when someone buys into that concept. As someone who (frankly) worked their @$$ off to become a true Spanish speaker, I don't appreciate know-it-alls spouting off something to me....better approach it as a full and progressive experience around me or I will blow one's head sideways in Spanish explaining that they really don't have all the secrets.... And well...that's actually okay....as long as you don't overestimate yourself. I hope to follow the same path in Russian as Spanish, so one day I can truly be mistaken for fluent....because I will be!

Good luck to you! <3

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Multi0Lingual4
Multi0Lingual4
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Interesting on your second point. What slavic languages have you studied/speak? I am currently learning Slovak and the spelling is a nightmare, and I have heard the same about other Slavic languages...

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaurianaB
LaurianaB
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Multi0Lingual4,

You are learning Slovak? My ex is Slovak, ahahah. It is very easy IMO if you have any experience with Czech, Russian....I can read it easily, though the pronunciation takes a bit of work. It's quite lyrical, and I hear it on a weekly basis at least..... Čas a trpelivosť ruže donáša. Keep learning and best of luck :)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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I have heard that about Polish but Slovak spelling doesn’t seem like a nightmare at all. It’s very phonetical apart from its nedeľas but even that has a fairly clearly defined rule.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Multi0Lingual4
Multi0Lingual4
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The reason I say nightmare is because there are too many strange consonants next to each other. I need vowels.

But I'm sure it'll be easier as time goes on.

1 day ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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Are you saying that Esperanto isn't easy to learn? Or what's the dogma?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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I believe he is saying that how helpful it is is the dogma. And "what it could do for the world" is surely conjecture at best.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sens44

I think German is easier than Romance languages. I once said that here and people got rabidly angry at me, foaming at the mouth and pounding their keyboard because they thought German was hard so I was "obviously wrong". But really - German grammar never gave me anywhere the amount of fits as French grammar has, and even Italian sometimes. French makes no sense at all in my opinion. German is way more logical than either of them.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rewjeo
Rewjeo
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I agree wholeheartedly. Does German have a lot of rules? Sure. But then you just follow them, and really they're mostly pretty simple.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Djedida
Djedida
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I think Germanic languages in general are easier (Frisian, Afrikaans, Scandinavian languages), but German is entirely on a level of its own and a beast to tame.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Carrhae

It probably also depends on what those people their native language is. Italians probably have an easier time learning French than German, whilst Dutch speakers probably have an easier time learning German than French (Generally speaking).

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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what is easier about German than Romance languages?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sencez
Sencez
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People always say German starts out easy and gets hard as you actually learn.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rewjeo
Rewjeo
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I've actually heard the exact opposite - the rules are intimidating, but once you learn them, you can speak German. As opposed to English, where the rules are really simple... until you realize that the rules hardly ever apply and then you're just memorizing a bunch of one-off exceptions.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Emma_L_a
Emma_L_a
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Is it bad, as a native, that I actually don't at least consciously know any rules and it's like "this is what everyone says it like and what i gathered from half-paying attention in class: this is how i say it." The only rule I really know it that i before e except after c but... science? conscience? not following rule?

and there's also the rule about names in sentences. It's supposed to be (for example) Lilly and I but at the end of a sentence it's me but most people just say me and Lilly.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

As I noted somewhere else in this post, the "i before e except after c" rule only works (reliably) if the vowel sound is "eee" ("i" in Europe). It is sigh-ance not see-ance so it is spelt "ie".

"Lilly and I" or "Lilly and me" depends on whether the two of you are the object or subject of the sentence. "Lilly and I go into town" - this is the subject (nominative case). If Lilly wasn't there you'd say "I go into town". "She gave a present to Lilly and me" - in this case it is the object. Dropping Lilly you get "She gave a present to me".

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ria___
Ria___
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As a native English speaker, I've never thought about the rules surrounding "and I" and "and me" before. I've always just used them correctly (I hope) by habit. I'm a little bit mindblown after reading your second paragraph. Why did that never occur to me before?! lol

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaurianaB
LaurianaB
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Here go my most offensive "unpopular" opinions (take them with a grain of salt...). Let 'er rip:

Monolingualism is a disease and the main symptom is cultural unawareness that can only be cured by languages

Russian is not hard. Everyone quit quitting on Russian.

German does not sound "harsh." Quit hating on this beautiful language.

French does not sound romantic (to me). Quit swooning over French. It's just another language.

Serbo-Croatian is really sexy. Shoot me.

Polish accents are some of the best.

Korean sounds like Mongolian.

Dead languages are dead.

Portuguese is Spanish spoken with a Russian accent.

Chinese at high pitches can cause brain damage.

People should quit experimenting with 10 or 12 languages all the time and set some goals. Otherwise in 5 years they will complain that they aren't fluent in everything. There is beauty in a one-track mind.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GedacktBourdon

Haha I agree with all of this. Portuguese DOES sound like Spanish spoken with a Russian accent! I can literally read most Portuguese on text without ever having studied it because of my Spanish abilities, but spoken I can't. And honestly yeah, I think monolingualism among people who have the means to learn another language is a cultural disease, plain and simple.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Emma_L_a
Emma_L_a
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Oh my gods, yes.

Many people who speak Cantonese, yelling is like talking at normal volume then screaming is like shouting for them.

I should know, my mom speaks Cantonese (her original dialect, she's from Hong Kong which is Cantonese hub)

Now imagine that high-pitched?

Gods, I think I would be deaf by now.

Also as someone who has many asian relatives, you must not listen to either Korean/Mongolian a lot? Korean sounds nothing like it...

And I agree with your last point. How are you to focus on them if you're learning them all at the same time? Not how you become a polyglot

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ppelk
ppelk
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Here's a controversial one: Languages are mainly de facto borders between people. Humanity would be better of if we all spoke the same language.

Imagine that the starting point would be that all people would speak the same language initially. Then some nutter cult-leader would come and say, "We're going to exclude our clan so well from the others that we're going to invent our own language that no-one else understands!". It's an idea in the same ballpark as setting the calendar to year zero.

I think the statement is true in many ways. I still like the linguistic diversity of say, Europe, and enjoy learning languages.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/phopkins1
phopkins1
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I hear ya but sometimes I think people might get along better if nonone spoke, LOL!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/headache_booth

Then some nutter cult-leader would come and say, "We're going to exclude our clan so well from the others that we're going to invent our own language that no-one else understands!".

The Church of Latter-day Saints did something similar at some point on a small scale with the Deseret writing system. It wasn't a different language, but it was done so Mormons couldn't read things that they weren't allowed to read for one reason or another, essentially. That's a kind of dulled-down explanation, though, I think.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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That's the goal of IALs (including but not limited to Esperanto): to provide a language that's easy for everyone to learn as a second language.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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The deep state invented Russian so that they could scare Americans into supporting war in Jamaica and every time you learn it the beaches of Tajikistan grow dirtier! Just kidding, I don't believe that, nor do I understand the question. What could really be a controversial opinion on this one?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/breadroll04

for example: Benny Lewis is a fake polyglot , French isn't easy, you can't learn Japanese from anime...

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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very interesting..I always found that French was considered by most NOT easy..So your example in this case is not controversial or unpopular ,just the opposite...:-)) French is a very difficult language..not like Russian or Hungarian, but still harder than Spanish and Italian from same language group.. French grammar is super difficult for foreigners and French pronunciation and writing is even more challenging for many.. As for Benny Lewis..and Japanese from anime, I simply do not know enough about these subjects.. interesting post though..thank you..!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/antonmo
antonmo
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I know people studying it 6-7 years and still saying they are not comfortable with it. But here on Duolingo where people are good at languages, I believe French is thought of as relatively easy.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

Weird. I always thought French was pretty easy. In the third year at school we were reading simple books (easy - but not kids' books or cartoons) and we often spoke it instead of English outside of class (mostly to annoy non-French speakers). Not saying it was perfect but after not studying it for four years with a short brush up I was able to use it in Europe.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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French grammar is not harder than Spanish grammar and in many parts even easier (for example there's no ser/estar or por/para)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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French is very easy, far easier for me than Spanish or Italian, significantly so. If you speak like most of the cool Shonen characters I imagine you would be laughed at even if you could learn Japanese from anime. And Benny Lewis is not somebody I know exists, therefore he is fake in general. The last one is a joke, but these are my genuine beliefs on language learning.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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It is good for you if you find French easy, then you are like me..(for me French is very easy..I am from French ancestry and studied it..) but for many people it is not. French is not phonetic, like Spanish or Italian..and French conjugations and word forms as well as pronunciation are a lot more complex.. but it is all a matter of opinion of course..and I certainly respect yours..:-)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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I have Cajun family, and while they sadly don't speak it, I sort of used their accent as a crutch to teach myself the nasal sounds at the ends of words. And once you're over the pronunciation hump, I've found the grammar pretty easy. I would love a further break down to see past my own biases though, because that's how we learn awesome things.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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Cajun background-wow that is very interesting..you are very fortunate, that is quite rare.. Good for you, once again!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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Are you from the state of Louisiana , then? Isn't that where most Cajun French population settled? They have such an interesting history, and originally they came from Canada, only from the Eastern parts..from former Acadia..

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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@Giovanna-Louise I am from Ohio, my family were pretty actively travelling trappers, and moved up to the mountains to catch squirrels, skunks, and possums. The distance from Louisiana is likely why I am the family's first French speaker in like, four generations. I have some family still in the South, but I haven't met any of the ones in Louisiana, nor do I know if they are still there.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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Andrealphus , your family history is fascinating, and i admire that you returned to your French roots like this being a new generation.. That is awesome , I wish you best of luck on your language journey..

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Keikou_
Keikou_
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I don't think languages are an exciting,life-changing journey.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Songve
Songve
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"If you live in (insert country) then you should only speak (that language). " Unfortunately, I hear that a lot in the enlightened country I live in. And plenty of examples in media of people going Full Nut Brain on people in public places speaking a different language.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/antonmo
antonmo
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the whole world is racist. despite all the laws against it and the stigma, racism is practically everywhere. It is like a blind spot, because if they acknowledge the racism it might get popular, and if they don't they let it continue. The latest developments in the world, with extreme right wing parties success in Europe, and now the following of Trump witnesses that it has even got more and more popular. What was shameful a decade ago is spoken out loud. We might even be getting back to a fascist era soon if this continues.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Songve
Songve
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This is the stuff of revolutions and war. I've been through one and would hate to see more.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

you know, you're not wrong...

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ryanaissance

Just because you feel your country is getting too crowded and they're cutting down the forests you grew up in to accommodate more and more people moving here (locals aren't having all the kids for sure) and you are thus pro-reduced-immigration, does not equate with racism.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/antonmo
antonmo
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yeah blame it all on the foreigners

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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I actually didn't know this opinion existed.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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:-)) ..then why do you study them? :-) почему так грустно?(why so sad? ) :-)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Keikou_
Keikou_
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Because 1. my mom speaks Russian and I don't always understand what she says, I just nod and smile, and 2. I need good grades lol. It's basically just a lot of tedious repititon and embarrassing mistakes until you are fluent.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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Hmm..I see..What you need then ,is to find a language and a reason to study is that you would be personally very passionate about..Whatever that reason might be! I found studying English very tedious and unmotivating chore while growing up, because my parents forced me to it.. But as an adult I discovered that this language connected me to the whole world and to many subjects that I was passionate about

All of a sudden I had a huge motivation to remaster English..and now I am at the native speaker level in it..

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rdlk10
Rdlk10
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That Swedish is an easy language. It has a lot of exceptions and the spelling is very illogical.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ArpsTnd
ArpsTnd
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Filipino is different from Tagalog. Change my mind.
North Korean is [a bit] different from South Korean. Fight me.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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I don’t see why the second one would be controversial. There are dialects in every language (though perhaps not living ones if the language has less than 10 speakers).

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/headache_booth

North Korean seems to be more than just a bit different from South Korean to me because of how difficult it is for defectors from the North to understand and speak to speakers from the South at first.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/phopkins1
phopkins1
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yes, i think north korean is quite a bit different. the ttmik folks did a video about it

edit: here is the ttmik vid https://youtu.be/MtnX2b6qjnY

the folks at korean from zero did ont too if i recall?

edit: here it is https://youtu.be/WNEaGvSPXFw

these are both fun vids to watch, imo. and I have all the korean from zero books but people have criticized them, i like them???

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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Filipino should've been different from Tagalog. It was meant to be a hybrid language, taking elements from all the many languages of the Philippines, to put all the diverse peoples on an equal footing and give everyone a common language which would be equally easy to learn for all of them. Unfortunately, the project was hijacked by Tagalog nationalists, and as any honest Filipino will tell you, Tagalog and Filipino are 99% identical.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Solfyr
Solfyr
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  1. Anime Japanese and classroom Japanese are still fundamentally the same language and there is nothing wrong with treating them that way. If anime motivates you to learn the language better than flashcards and vocabulary lists do, that's perfectly okay.

  2. Learning a language that is already near mutually intelligible with your native language is not something to brag about. (That's for you, Spanish and Portuguese.)

  3. Foreigners are weirdly obsessed with monolingualism in the US when 90% of Americans would have no practical use for a second language. I have to wonder how many of those people actually took optional, non-English language classes themselves.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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  1. Yeahhhhhhhhh dude, informal language like, so kawaii, go talk lik dat in ya job interview bruh
1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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Esperanto isn't a real language

there's no need to save dying languages

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ionasky
ionasky
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Haha... well done, yeah those count as controversial all right (or more properly just plain silly) Esperanto is used (spoken/written/read) by plenty of people, ( hundreds of thousands if not millions) Far more than those who use some other well known minority languages and has been for well over a century, as long as modern hebrew... of course is a language.

And as for the preservation of dying languages... failing to preserve them if you can is the same as saying art and history have no place in the modern world... as dumb an idea as i have encountered in a while.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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Esperanto can have all of the speakers in the world, it doesn't really compare culturally to any of the languages that aren't constructed, and that may be what was meant. It is backed by nothing.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpells
MissSpells
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Esperanto as old as Hebrew? Hebrew is thousands of years old and modern Hebrew does not differ than much from ancient Hebrew (another unpopular opinion of mine I suppose, modern Hebrew is not a separate language from biblical Hebrew)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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MissSpells..I politely disagree.I happen to be a person who studied and spoke Hebrew fluently in the past a part of my languages studies.I lived and worked in Israel for some time too. Modern Hebrew is VERY different from Old biblical Hebrew. Yes one can read Bible and recognise the words but the language has been reconstructed and it is an amazing feat..

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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https://qr.ae/TUhFC0 https://qr.ae/TUhFFy Is word order completely different. Cannot be considered they the same language. Is Modern Hebrew an extremely Germanified version of Biblical Hebrew, at best.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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none of these people have Esperanto as their native language and usually people speak it "just for fun"

and I didn't say it's not a language but that it's not a real language

and can you explain the second point? does art not exist anymore because the language of the people who did it has died?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/qqqqqqqqzzzqqqqq

Actually there are about a thousand people do have Esperanto as a native language:

https://www.ethnologue.com/language/epo

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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LICA98 Actually you are incorrect..There are over a thousand people today, if not more ,because by now there are more children in those families, who are fully native Esperanto speakers from birth. I 've seen videos of these people and their interviews, and being a linguist myself that impressed me, they are naturally fluid and fully fluent in Esperanto and they do not sound robotic or artificial..they are vibrant and intelligent young people who often speak few languages in addition to their native Esperanto. Also I must object that people do not study Esperanto just for fun... I ve seen hundreds of comments on utube and on the internet written by esperantists and they are very dedicated and thoughtful and even though i do not know the language i can see that they are proficient in how they use it..(i am a linguist like i said, and Esperanto has elements of languages that I am familiar with)..i think those people who choose to follow through with Esperanto do it for it's ideology/philosophy..and it is not up to us to judge them..unless we make an effort to study or understand their language better.. It is certainly not like Klingon or other conlangs..which are mostly for fun..

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpells
MissSpells
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This is a nice comparison by Langfocus. While I am less knowledgable about Hebrew, I studied it casually for most of my childhood and pretty much agree with his summary. https://langfocus.com/language-features/how-different-are-modern-hebrew-and-biblical-hebrew/. The main reason I see them as the same language is anyone fluent in Hebrew can read the bible no problem. I also studied both for years, though at a beginner level, and never felt like there was a big difference. As far as I understand, it is a bit like reading Shakespeare, sure, it is sometimes tricky even if you are fluent in English, but not a separate language. I have never met an Israeli who has problems reading the bible. Anyways, like I said, I know my opinion is not the popular one. This could probably be a whole other discussion. Because Hebrew was revived, I actually think it changed less over time.. than other languages, like English, that changed with common use. Anyways, I agree to disagree.. but I do think equating the age of 'modern hebrew' to esperanto is ridiculous.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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Actually I fully agree with your last point..Hebrew came from ages old tradition and a very solid language/culture that already existed for milennia.. and was simply revived and modified to suit the modern reality of those in Israel.. Esperanto was created anew based on elements of multiple languages.. Langfocus videos are always superinteresting..i love them..thank you for the link..

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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Define "real language" and "need" and that will determine whether or not a lot of people will agree or disagree.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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not constructed

if a language is dying it is often because the people themselves don't teach it to their kids and prefer to speak some other language

so if they themselves don't view the language as important why should anyone else do anything about it?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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Not constructed is kind of an arbitrary condition. I mean, I live in a skyscraper. Definitely constructed, definitely real. But if that's how you're defining it, I won't argue with your definitions, because there's no point. That's not a very unpopular opinion, though.

Many people avoid teaching their children their native language because they don't want them to be victims of ethnic persecution. In many cases children are taught the language of their ancestors and are then openly punished for speaking it anywhere outside of the home. I don't think conforming to a dominant culture as a victim of prejudice counts as consensual behavior.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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All languages are constructed to some degree. It's just a question of whether one is aware of what's going on.

I guess you're unfamiliar with linguacide, and have never looked at studies on what happens to groups that relearn their dying languages.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sencez
Sencez
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I agree with the dying languages. Everyone thought a Navajo course would challange them or help make duolingo 'better' however it seems hardly anyone is rushing to learn it like they thought, just judging by the low levels of the language and how the majority of people rather learn Hawaiian.

Plus those who do learn Navajo but never even plan on using outside of Duolingo, in my opinion, are helping nothing, like they think.

However I am a hypocrite since I want to learn some Uralic languages that are endangered and a great motivation for me is the fact they are endangered.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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Speaking for myself, one of the reasons that I'm not learning Navajo or Hawaiian is how short the courses are. If I can't actually learn the language from Duolingo, and since the courses seem to be mainly publicity stunts (I don't trust them when they say that more will be added later, I've seen plenty of courses abandoned before) why bother at all?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Vannaty

I actually do want to study Navajo, I think it is incredible that they have added it. Unfortunately, I am so new to learning languages, only started Spanish at the start of August, that I started Navajo and felt like it would be to great of a hinderance until I got more Spanish practice out of the way.

I have real life goals with the languages I hope to learn, Spanish, Portuguese, and French. I want to use them in my career path. Unfortunately this means I need to prioritize them until I can comfortably practice other languages. I doubt I am the only one in a situation like this. Navajo was literally just added, and is not very conductive for learning yet. But I have been collecting information on resources that have been introduced in the forums, to start when I can. I am sure there are many others that will try it once it is more formed, or it fits into their goals, and plans. But Navajo was introduced suddenly, it was not something the average learner had accomodated into their schedule.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/EthanGrey314
EthanGrey314
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Minority languages are mostly useless.

I hate that I have this opinion, but I can't help but think that learning a language like Galician is useless if I know Spanish, or that learning Hawaiian is better than studying French.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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In your life they likely are, but for guys like me who like to trace where languages come from, how they evolved, how they relate to one another, the minority languages can serve almost like missing links! Also, they are pretty important for social workers. There are plenty of indigenous and immigrant poor people who don't speak the majority language of the country. These languages are often pretty rare, and being the one who speaks them can make you a life saver.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GedacktBourdon

I highly disagree. Learning a language is not just based on utility. One can learn a language because of the passion they have for it. I do agree that one shouldn't learn a minority language if one has no opportunity to speak it, but if someone has the goal of going to a country to speak a minority language I applaud them for revitalizing the culture. The diversity of human languages is arguably the very core of what makes us appreciate the beauty of language. If everyone spoke the top 5 languages, it would be very boring. You need to realize that there are 7,000 estimated languages in the world and ALL of them have worth and all of them have a soul.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Djedida
Djedida
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Learning minority languages should be a personal, local endeavor. There's pretty much no point in learning Occitan, Galician, Venetian, etc as an American. However, if you live in France, Portugal/Spain, or Italy, those languages could be useful.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Carrhae

Even then you could ask yourself whether it's worth the hassle. Why waste time learning a language you can speak with the ten thousand people living in the nearby province, whilst you can learn for example Japanese to understand anime or better your English? Chances are those ten thousand people will probably learn for example French instead to communicate with you.

Only guys like maybe local merchants could have a use for it then. It's far more usefull for Spanish people to learn French or English than say Basque or Catalan even those living in border regions.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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yeah and probably everyone who speaks the minority languages also speaks the main language of the country

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Vannaty

I think it depends, I want to do nonprofit work, and I know that reaching out to target demographics in their language helps them tremendously. There are many minority languages I would like to study conversationally just to help build some bridges for oppressed individuals that need assistance.

But if you are not interacting with anyone of those languages, then it would be less worthwhile to you.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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There's a pervasive belief that if everyone is going to learn a language they should pick something like Chinese because 'it's useful in international business'. Well, not everyone works in international business, most of those who do won't need to understand everything said in Chinese (only one member of the team does), and not all international business is done with China.

Galician has 2.4 million speakers, about 10% of which are monolingual. Hawaiian has 2000 native speakers and 24,000 total fluent speakers. The average person knows (meaning, genuinely knows details of what's going on in their lives) about 300 people, and has only one or two truly close friends. Both Hawaiian and Galician have far more speakers than you can realistically meet, and as the saying goes 'speak to a man in a language he understands and you speak to his head, speak to a man in his own language and you speak to his heart'. Me encanta o galego por certo, é unha lingua fermosa.

I could tell you all about the proven economic benefits of minority languages, such as improved sales for products with text in minority languages (eg having Scots Gaelic on whiskey lends it an air of authenticity which attracts more customers), but I'll keep my argument simple instead, with the point that I initially made.

Ramo de froles parece

Muxía a das altas penas

con tanta rosa espallada

naquela branca ribeira,

con tanto caraveliño

que relose antra's areas,

con tanta xente que corre,

que corre e se sarandea

ó son das gaitas que tocan

e das bombas que rebentan,

uns que venden limoada,

outros augua que refresca,

aqueles dulce resolio

con rosquilliñas de almendra;

os de máis alá sandías

con sabrosas sirigüelas,

mentras tanto qu'algún cego

ó son da alegre pandeira,

toca un carto de guitarra

para que bailen as nenas.

¡Bendita a Virxe da Barca,

bendita por sempre sea!

¡mina Virxe milagrosa

en quen tantos se recrean!

Todos van por visitala,

todos alí van por vela

na súa barca dourada,

na súa barca pequena,

dond'están dous anxeliños,

dous anxeliños que reman.

Alí chegou milagrosa

nunha embarcaçón de pedra.

Alí, porque Dios o quixo,

sempre adoradores teña.

A pedra, bala que bala,

sírvelle de centinela

e mentras doormen os homes

ela adoraçón lle presta

con aquel son campanudo

qu'escoitar lonxe se deixa

e a quen o mar con bramidos

humildosos lle contesta.

Cando as campanas repican

e a música retumbea,

cal nun ceo, polas naves

da recollidiña igrexa;

cando os foguetes estalan

nos aires, e voces frescas

polo espaço cas gaitiñas

e cos tambores se mescran,

estonces a pedra bala

tan alegr'e tan contenta

qu'anqu'un cento de presoas

brinca e salta enriba dela,

coma si fose mociña,

máis que unha pruma lixeira,

alegre com'unhas pascuas

salta e rebrinca con elas.

Choven estonces presentes,

choven estonces ofertas

que lle traen os romeiros

en feitiñas carabelas

diante da Virxe bendita,

ós pés da sagrada Reina,

e por eso alí lle cantan

cando se despiden dela:

"Nosa Señora da Barca

ten o tellado de pedra;

ben o pudera ter d'ouro

mina Virxe si quixera".

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ryanaissance
  1. Cases in Finnish or Russian are actually pretty easy to learn. Just think of them as conjunctions with well defined-rules.

  2. Danish is the hardest European language to pronounce, and I've tried every one I've heard of. It's harder to pronounce than Arabic (I did a year of it formally), and in many ways its harder to pronounce than Chinese or Vietnamese, which are about as hard as it gets for an English speaker. It might just be me.

  3. Finnish ties with Persian as the most poetic languages. Calm down, Urdu.

  4. German is the master language.

  5. Venetian is the best Romance language.

  6. You can learn multiple similar languages at the same time without mixing them up. Just learn the sounds of each first.

  7. There are degrees of fluency, but to earn the title in my book you need to be able to think in the language as you can in your native language. Being conversational is not necessarily being fluent.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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Brilliant!..agree with last 2 points..right on!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpells
MissSpells
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No one will need to learn languages in the very near future thanks to translation technology and this translation technology is a wonderful thing for which we should all be grateful, as it may be the third best thing after sliced bread and the internet. Learning languages is just a hobby, it does not make anyone a better person. Also, being bilingual or multilingual is not a big deal, and does not make anyone a better person. I guess these opinions are somewhat tied. On the flip side... I think that learning Latin, Ancient Greek or High Valyrian is just as valuable as learning Spanish.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MasterZsword

It may be hard for people who aren't American to understand, but the point about multilinguals not being special may come from the fact that the monolingualism in America, particularly in English, is often shamed. I have been in many classroom settings where teachers would talk down Americans for only knowing English while foreigners are trying to learn other languages, including English. Therefore, for some of us (definitely not everyone), being multilingual is perceived as a special skill. And, that could equate to being a "better person" since monolingualism is often perceived here as the opposite. Oh yeah, and I guess that's where my unpopular opinion comes in: there is nothing wrong with being monolingual for your entire life.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpells
MissSpells
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Shaming is generally not a very inspiring teaching technique in general. I think everyone has different skills, abilities, and often especially what languages a person knows are the result of circumstances and luck. What matters whether someone knows one or one million languages is if they are kind and respect others.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rewjeo
Rewjeo
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On the other hand, I think learning another language (or, really, culture, but language gets at that) has the potential to really change a person for the better. It forces you to open your mind to new perspectives. My understanding of the world, and thus of people, is a lot deeper and more nuanced for knowing foreign languages.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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"No one will need to learn languages in the very near future thanks to translation technology" This is actually a very popular belief. People always try to tell me that I should just use Google Translate instead of learning any language. But my view is that we've been about 5 years away from perfecting machine translation for about 50 years.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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People were saying decades ago how translators would go obsolete, how computer translation would take over. It hasn't, and I have many stories about Google translate fails, such as when it translated 'a little lake of chocolate' as 'a chocolate lobster' (this for Spanish, for Vietnamese it's much worse). There was also the time that it translated 'hi, how are you?' in Arabic as 'I love you'. Even when a text is translated broadly correctly, it's usually very inelegant. There seems to be a lack of understanding among people who haven't reached a high level in multiple languages of how language is not just conveying technical documents, it's also puns, poetry, cultural references, and so many other things.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sencez
Sencez
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Someone once told me language is all input so for a long time I just consumed content but then when it came time to actually try and communicated (on a more working on something level, then a conversation) I found it real difficult to organise my thoughts, therefore I believe language is not just input and have even found more success with just output.

I also consider Serbian and Croatian the same language, don't even try debating with me on this.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LaurianaB
LaurianaB
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I also consider Serbian and Croatian the same language, don't even try debating with me on this.

That's why most people say Serbo-Croatian. And as someone who knows a heck ton of Bosnians, Serbs, and Croats, all I have heard is that "Serbian," "Croatian," and "Bosnian" are really all largely the same. The only reason people will balk at this is because of something political. So, when you are in Bosnia it is Bosnian, Croatian for Croatia, and so on :D

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/antonmo
antonmo
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before listening to someone doublecheck the facts. even if seemingly an expert tells you double or triplecheck it and not only once

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sencez
Sencez
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Many different polyglots had the idea and practice it. I wasn't going in blind.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Karmagith
Karmagith
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Learning grammar is not necessary to learn a language.

All languages are basically just as difficult to learn as each other if approached the right way when taking writing out of the equation. Writing systems can cause additional difficulties, however.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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I think you win for having the opinion that is actually the most unpopular and not just mean-spirited or controversial or something.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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Pretty sure this isn't controversial, largely just objectively wrong.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Karmagith
Karmagith
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Can you point to a language in which children take a longer time learning than others? I have not heard of such a thing.

Grammar instruction just fools people into thinking they are learning something concrete while not giving any aid to speaking the language. It is useful for editing, but that is a different thing.

I think explicit grammar instruction is what holds people back from learning languages they perceive as harder because of 'more complicated grammar rules.

I could be proven wrong of course, but there is nothing objectively right or wrong about language learning. People who study this sort of thing actually do differ on the grammar point so I would say it is very much controversial academically.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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Yes. English children lag up to 2 years behind their Italian counterparts in reading ability, because of the phonetic irregularity in English spelling. Don't get me started on how long it takes Japanese and Chinese kids to learn their respective writing systems.

If you're talking purely about speaking, I have no doubt that languages which use genders and cases (e.g. Russian) take longer for children to learn/absorb their rules than languages that don't. The same goes for irregular verb conjugation. Just today my son said "tooken", for instance. That kind of error simply doesn't exist in some languages. How could it not take more time to learn a language that has more complicated grammatical features?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Giovanna-Louise
Giovanna-Louise
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very good points..especially true about Chinese /Japanese kids and Russian..

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/betsys2003
betsys2003
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Who the heck says that "French is easy" and gets into fights about it?

There are people who apparently learn English from watching TV/movies, so I don't see why you couldn't do it the other way around with Japanese, though I've always thought that seemed unlikely without at least some base to start with.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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Have you ever spoken to people who learn English soley from watching American and British media? It is usually PRETTY ROUGH. You can definitely use those things to supplement though. A close friend of mine from Pakistan learned basic English at school, and then got his slang and expanded vocabulary from Supernatural, Naruto, Pokemon, and a lot of American and Canadian pop music. Sometimes he speaks in slang and it is super close to sounding natural, like he'll go for something smooth sounding and come off like the "almost integrated immigrants" in Family Guy.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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The problem with learning Japanese from anime is that the language used is childish and extremely informal. Imagine talking to everyone you meet in baby English

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ash.Purple

Scots is not a language. It's English with a terrible accent and slang.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/HerrArbo
HerrArbo
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If Swedish is a different language to Norwegian then Scots is a language.

On a side note, calling an accent that isn't your own terrible requires quite a bloated ego...

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sencez
Sencez
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As if one can judge their own accent.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rewjeo
Rewjeo
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I don't think it's terribly unpopular to say that Scots isn't a language anymore, having pretty well merged with English. Though, to be honest, it was probably always part of a dialect continuum with English, anyway.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Ryanaissance

On paper Scots is easy for a English speaker to understand. Spoken...very different story.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/SpaceDoggi
SpaceDoggi
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Oddly, I have an easier time understanding spoken Scots than written Scots.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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I surely can't understand what they're saying half the time when they are speaking English, unless they know they are addressing Americans or speaking in some official capacity, I am lost.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MacIomhair
MacIomhair
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English is just a dialect of Scots - a dialect whose speakers can't even spell their own dialect's name p Anglish.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/piguy3
piguy3
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The English subjunctive isn't rare.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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Technically true, it's just that most of the time the subjunctive and the indicative are the same

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/piguy3
piguy3
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Interesting take. I will go boldly on and submit that it's not rare even confined to the cases that it's distinct from the indicative.

4 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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That's basically just was/were though (Were I to go there, I'd meet that person, subjunctive)

3 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/piguy3
piguy3
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Well, that's the (oddly named depending on how you look at it) English past subjunctive. My original comment was preponderantly in regards to the English present subjunctive. I understand that its frequency varies between English dialects (see the article I linked), but since we're being controversialists in this thread, I just went with a broad phrasing :)

2 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

True - the subjunctive is quite common. However most English speakers have a very poor grasp of their own grammar and don't recognize the subjunctive.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/piguy3
piguy3
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I wonder how you would react to the second batch of examples here. It's sort of set up as a US vs. UK English exercise, but obviously those aren't the only kinds of English out there.

4 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/antonmo
antonmo
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I just noticed two of your flags are missing. Or are those the made up ones ?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rewjeo
Rewjeo
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Are they the last two, both level 8 (as of now, I guess)? They're Navajo and Hawaiian, which still seem to not show for some people.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/PeterPan173079

This is because the flag patterns are all on one picture file that maps different parts to the circles. When they added the languages, they just swapped that picture with a new version including the two new patterns without changing anything. That makes your computer think it's identical with the version in your cache so it will continue using the cached version. You can force a refresh of all the cached content on a page by doing a complete reload of it (shift-F5 instead of just F5). Seeing that there are still people browsing around with this "issue", maybe it's not a bad idea to post this as a separate discussion.

tl;dr: hit shift-F5 to turn the grey circles colourful

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/piguy3
piguy3
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Didn't work for me :( Any further thoughts?

4 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Arachnje
Arachnje
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I don't know if the problem has to do with your browser or your account, but I can see the Hawaiian and Navajo flag on your profile. They don't look like gray circles to me (Chrome 70.0.3538.77).

3 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/OmegaGmaster
OmegaGmaster
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Spanish is really lame.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/GedacktBourdon

Literally fight me.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/infinityhappycat

I don’t want to study Spanish myself, but I see no reason to call the language lame. That’s just mean-spirited. What if someone called your favorite language lame?

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Emma_L_a
Emma_L_a
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ARMYs; it doesn't matter if you learn Korean and move to Korea and become a k-pop idol, BTS still won't notice you or date you unless you are super great and fit their ideal type; most of you on here are too young for them anyways... And Jungkook likes girls who are older than them so I'm sorry but not gonna happen

Anime fans; I love anime too but learning Japanese doesn't automatically make you a famous manga artist or immediately make you eligible to become a voice actor for anime or for a japanese girl/guy to fall in love with you.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

Lol, I'm an ARMY. That was harsh, but you're 10000% nicer about it than kids at school

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/F.r.e.j.a.
F.r.e.j.a.
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I think I have a few fun things to contribute here. ;)

For voices with higher pitch I prefer the English accent but for voices with lower pitch I prefer the American accent. I don't know why.

Nordic languages are the greatest for music even though I really love Romance languages for that too. ❤︎

Slavic languages are frightening and nauseous to me. They sound and look like something evil witches and wizards would use in curses. Usch!

I love the simple grammar and vocabulary in Esperanto but it does not sound that nice to my ears. After learning some of it I will probably study one of its successors.

German has the potential to sound angry and severe but most of the time it does not sound that way.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Maughanster_
Maughanster_
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Nordic languages are the greatest for music

I so totally agree with this statement.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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Learning English for any reason other than the love of it is a waste of time.

There has to be a better way to promote international communication.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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I do not know anyone who learns English for the love of it. It’s always for practical reasons. But maybe my perspective is warped by the fact that English is pretty much a required school subject here.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Karmagith
Karmagith
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I think a much better reason than "the love of it" is the availability of interesting to do in English. I know several people who have learned English to be able to watch movies or play video games. In my opinion interest in things to do the language unlocks for you is more important than the love of the language.

I actually think the love of a language alone is a bad reason to learn any language.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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Fair and nuanced. Strong desire to use the language for personal reasons counts as a good enough motivation to learn the language even if you don't care much for it on its own.

I just encounter a lot of people who study English because they are made to or because they think they are supposed to. Their progress is very slow because they never dedicate free time to study, because it's a chore.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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Because Esperanto will help you land jobs across the world or open you up to more countries than any other? English is established. French was once established, and we've had and still have more pocketed lingua franca, but right now nothing touches English in spread.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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I didn't say anything about Esperanto.

English is "established" but still has less than 20% global penetration. There is a gap that has yet to be filled.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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Learning a major language for practical reasons is not pointless, is my point. It really can expand your horizons.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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It absolutely can if you get any good at it. What I've found, to further clarify my point, is that people who don't have any real interest in English will often not become any good at it even if they put in a lot time simply because their heart is not in it. I wrote my original post a bit more extremely, because it's how I feel and it would make it more unpopular ;)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

Jpop is all Anime openings and all ends up being Japanese rock music in the end

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/stephen_zissou
stephen_zissouPlus
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There is no such thing as an easy language. Sure, it's easier for a native English speaker to learn to ask for directions in Spanish than in Mandarin. But, to have a proper conversation with a friend in Spanish, about dreams/hopes/fears, is just as difficult as it is in Chinese.

Corollary: Almost all opinions about how easy a language is are incorrectly based upon very superficial characteristics. A novice thinks Spanish is easy because it uses the Roman alphabet in a phonetic way and there are lots of cognates to English, and the same novice thinks Chinese is hard because of tones and characters. But Chinese is not agglutinative or highly declined. And in Spanish you have to learn "si + imperfect subjunctive clause + conditional clause" as a very common structure!

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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https://www.effectivelanguagelearning.com/language-guide/language-difficulty

As someone who has actually gained fluency in Spanish (C1 level), and is struggling through Vietnamese, believe me that for a native English speaker absolutely every level of language learning is harder with, say, Chinese than it is for Spanish. Spanish has a massive number of cognates with English, which help enormously at every level of learning. With Vietnamese nothing comes easily, ever. You pick up some things over time which help a lot, but never to the same degree as Spanish. Having studied Vietnamese for approximately two years, I am finally able to see a word and pronounce it correctly 99.9% of the time. Yay me. At this point with Spanish I was living in Madrid (for a month) and communicating entirely in Spanish. There were things that I didn't understand, there were things that I said ungrammatically or haltingly, but I was functional in Spanish. If I went to Vietnam I could probably express most basic things if I pulled a face and spoke slowly, but I would likely understand next to nothing of what people around me said unless they either wrote it down or spoke really, unrealistically slowly.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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If everyone spent 3 months learning Esperanto, the world would be a better place

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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Or English or any other language for that matter, assuming your point was about cross-cultural understanding and not some inherent feature of Esperanto (which would be preposterous). At least English has a culture attached to it.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Rewjeo
Rewjeo
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There's been a study that showed that three months of Esperanto + nine months of French ended with people more capable in French than just twelve months of French. AFAIK there's only been one study, and it was fairly small scale, so it's not conclusive, but essentially the idea seems to be that Esperanto, being intentionally simple/easy, is a very effective way to teach people how learning a foreign language works. It's the whole idea that your third language is easier to learn than your second, but makes the second language a whole lot easier to learn.

Also, since we're only doing three months of it, we might as well go with an easy language. It's not like three months of learning English is going to give you any real ability to interact with its culture(s).

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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Learning any language for a period of time is going to help with the next language.

might as well go with an easy one

That’s why I specifically mentioned English. The grammar is over simplified, and even though people struggle with the pronunciation, there is so much media around that you can start to pick up patterns in three months.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

"Learning any language for a period of time is going to help with the next language." - if it is related. Learning French is unlikely to help with Hungarian or Arabic - unless in learning French you begin to understand the language of language "noun", "verb", "predicate" etc

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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If you begin to understand the language of language AND you learn how to learn a language.

If it’s related

True, that helps. But let’s not forget that the study mentioned earlier was made with Esperanto and French, which are essentially related languages and thus tells us nothing about how beneficial Esperanto would be for someone wanting to learn Arabic (other than the “language of language” and “learn to learn” aspects mentioned)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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I guess there are two inherent features that matter: 1. It's designed to be easy to learn, and it really is. 2. Because it's designed to bring diverse groups of people together, it usually attracts people who are interested in that. I guess I should qualify my initial statement by saying 'if everyone chose to learn Esperanto for 3 months'.

Also, there definitely is a culture, just not a national/ethnic one.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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No, there is a subculture, and I am very aware of it. And there is plenty of it that leans on national/ethnic culture, because a lot of it's spread relates back to people teaching it to Jews in the Holocaust, claiming it is Italian. And you have said all languages are constructed on some level, but it is just not the same. A language like, well, any natural language, is birthed from its culture and history. Esperanto can't compete with that.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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"A language like, well, any natural language, is birthed from its culture and history. Esperanto can't compete with that." True. But, why do you assume that's the competition that Esperanto is being entered in? The cleanest, healthiest, best horse in the world won't place very highly in a dog show.

Pardon me for the length of this quote, but: "An objection which is often raised against constructed languages is that they can never be as good as natural languages. It is true that our Interlanguage is not as rich as English, not as elegant as French, not as vigorous as German, not as beautiful as Italian, not as full of nuances as Russian, not as "homelike" as our mother-tongue. But note this well, that all these good qualities, which one appreciates and praises in the national languages, are found only when they are spoken or written by natives. And the Interlanguage may very well be richer than the English spoken by a Frenchman, more elegant than French as spoken by a Dane, more vigorous than the German of some Italians, more beautiful than the Italian of the English, more full of nuances than the Russian of Germans, and more homelike than my own tongue spoken by Russians. And as our language is an auxiliary language, it can only be compared fairly with natural languages as spoken by foreigners; and then neither Ido nor Novial need feel ashamed of itself." - Otto Jespersen

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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No need to apologize for the length of the quote, as it is a good quote. But I think that it, as many Esperanto arguments do, really underestimate the skills of a second language learner.

4 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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To answer somewhat flippantly: which second language learner are they underestimating? ;)

While plenty of people are capable of learning ESL to a point where they are fluent, although often still error-prone, many people try very hard and simply cannot. The point of a simplified grammar and vocabulary for an auxlang is to lower to level of language skill needed to communicate with the world at large. Plenty of people whose dominant skills lie in other areas are being stifled by the use of a natlang as a global language.

3 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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Or everybody would sound like robotic aliens during UN meetings and we would be engulfed by war.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sencez
Sencez
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I feel Esperanto is difficult for anyone who doesn't speak a Germanic or Romance language.

Sure the grammar is easy (as far as I have heard) but the vocab is still european.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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The vocabulary is a mishmash of European roots, but there are still simple strategies for building vocabulary very quickly from a few base roots.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Songve
Songve
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Good one. On the other hand, it is difficult to argue with someone who speaks a different language.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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Look, I voiced an unpopular opinion and I got downvoted. Who would have guessed? ;)

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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The only person more downvoted than you just went off on America and came off as an edgy teenager instead of saying something about language learning, so I think that you're winning, and this appears to be your real opinion. Congrats, I'm jealous!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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Thanks, I worked hard to reach this point ;)

Have a lingot!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

Thanks for lowering my self-esteem! JK, it's all good. You don't know how bad people have been beating me up. And this is not nearly as bad as my real life.... people hate me all the time this is normal

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Multi0Lingual4
Multi0Lingual4
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Instead of posting about it here, why don't you go get some help?

1 day ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

America is never going to be the best country on Earth. It isn't and hasn't ever been. Plus the language is basically downgraded Latin and makes legit no sense. "I before E except after C!" Then explain science and their. And why have both C AND K if they make the same sounds, then use them TOGETHER to make the exact same sound they each make individually.

Edit: yeah i know you all hate me and my comments, lol it is fine i hate me too;) i'll upvote myself so i feel better lol ugh pushing my depression deeper into a hole

Edit again: Hola, it's everybody's least favorite person back at it again. well here's a heated debate, lol! You guys have been beating me up pretty bad I will say, but you all are like 30000% nicer than people who know me in person, soooo

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sandlicker
Sandlicker
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"America is never going to be the best country on Earth." This is not a language opinion.

"the language is basically downgraded Latin and makes legit no sense." The language is a germanic-romance semi-creole and it must make some sense because you're doing just fine using it to express yourself.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

oh, honey, I'm sorry I can't have an opinion. I guess i can't feel some way about english/america and put it on a post for "unpopular language opinions" that says in the description "might start a heated debate". can you just keep it a little less...i dont know...CYNICAL?! i sound so sarcastic and rude, don't i? i do. so you know how i feel when you put "i must mean some sense because your using it to express yourself" or whatever. Being rude and having a debate are two different things. know your limits. It was rude and offended me.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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America is not a language, and your statements about English were addressed, not shot down, and the person in question was plenty polite. The point was also addressed quite well. If sense cannot be made of it, then one should be able to convey a point with it, as you did. This will sound like some Grammar Nazism, but try to follow my point. "oh, honey," "legit makes no sense," ""i must mean some sense because your," the lack of comma after yourself within quotation marks, failing to capitalize the k at the start of "know your limits," quite frankly I think that you can't see any beauty in English. You have decided that some other language or languages are superior, so you do not show the English language enough respect to really get to know it. Sandlicker isn't rude, but I am. Don't be insufferable from a position of ignorance.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rev._mother

Sandlicker isn’t rude, but I am.

XD love!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rev._mother

Take it easy, honey.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

oof, well sarcasm is the "beauty of English" isn't it, dear

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

The whole thing is "WHEN PRONOUCED "EEE", i before e except after c".

English spelling doesn't come from Latin as such. It was built on Old German and old Norse and the c/k thing happened when French got added to the mix post 1066. Some Latin got folded back in later but it is rather a thread from Indo-European root languages.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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Even with the sound bit added, that rule fails more often than it works.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Becky245205
Becky245205
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I found this about the mnemonic (i before e, Except after c, Or when sounded as "a," As in neighbour and weigh.) on Wiki, I thought it was interesting:

In 1932 Leonard B. Wheat examined the rules and word lists found in various American elementary school spelling books. He calculated that, of the 3,876 words listed, 128 had ei or ie in the spelling; of these, 83 conformed to I-before-E, 6 to except-after-C, and 12 to sounded-like-A. He found 14 words with i-e in separate syllables, and 2 with e-i in separate syllables. This left 11 "irregular" words: 3 with cie (ancient, conscience, efficiency) and 8 with ei (either, foreign, foreigner, height, leisure, neither, seize, their).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_before_E_except_after_C#History_of_the_mnemonic

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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As someone with a background in statistics, I question whether the sample chosen was representative. Also, one must consider that English has hundreds of thousands of words. I'd be interested to know if a more recent study has been done using computer analysis. Upvoted all the same

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Becky245205
Becky245205
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I agree, it sounds like the research was done to help elementary school age children learn so it seems mostly helpful for basic words that you would use when learning a language before expanding your vocabulary.

Once the speaker is at a basic level they may be able to expand their vocabulary without using these ‘rules’. My English teachers always used to say ‘the only rule that never fails in the English language is that there’s always an exception to the rule.’ :)

5 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

So by adding the "when sounds eee" - it is pretty accurate.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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Only for that sample. Yeah, it's like the joke about the engineer the physicist and the mathematician (they're travelling together on a train through Scotland and see a black sheep. The engineer says 'there are black sheep in Scotland', the physicist replies 'no, we can only say that there's at least one black sheep in Scotland', to which the Mathematician states 'no, we can only state that there is at least one sheep in Scotland, with at least one side of it black'). Still, 3,876 words is not many, and those words are likely to be chosen by certain criteria, thus it is unlikely to be a representative sample of the whole English language.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

THANK YOU @Roman_Huczok at least somebody has an open mind!!!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

Really? Can you give some examples? None of "either, foreign, foreigner, height, leisure, neither, seize, their" are pronounced "ee".

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/aloha_aroha

depends on how you pronounce "either"

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Multi0Lingual4
Multi0Lingual4
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That's for British, Judit. Leisure, neither, seize, and either are all pronounced long e. (in my accent, midwestern american.) I don't even know how you pronounce seize if not long e. Saize? Size?

1 day ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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So, I will not get into a political debate here, because I imagine that is all that a discussion about how great or otherwise America is would turn into. As for English, while I would never move to defend the bizarre pronunciation rules, or lack thereof. And Sandlicker did a pretty great job of explaining why it is not downgraded Latin.

I am more interested in listing reasons why English is a touch more impressive than you are giving it credit for.

  1. It is largely formed by the invasions of the British isles, and then added on to by England's long-running expansion. Due to this, you can find little bits and pieces of many languages from many families and parts of the Earth.

  2. Connected to the first reason, there's plenty of ways that English is helpful. The United Kingdoms, The United States, Canada, Australia, Ireland, India, Pakistan, so many countries use English as their primary or official language. It can open up a lot of doors as far as tourism, education, and employment.

  3. Some of the world's most iconic art has been created by the English speaking world! And yes, there is a huge point to be made that this is mostly driven by the buying power of the English speaking world, and media in most of the world has been painfully neglected by the international community. But great art to consume can breed more great art. Television, music, comics, novels, movies, and even if you're one of those who thinks nothing good is coming out anymore, the old stuff is wonderful to revisit.(Though if you think that the English speaking portions of Africa and the Caribbean aren't putting out some neat stuff, I have some suggestions for you.)

  4. All of those bizarre and poorly kept rules lead to English being great for humor and poetry. Puns, wordplay, fun reverse poetry similar to and including what Sincez posted recently, and a wide variety of accents that add to the music in unique ways.

p.s.: Depression online isn't rare. And that isn't me saying you aren't, it is me saying that we don't hate you, we are responding to your argument, and that if that is too much for you then I genuinely want you to go find something that makes you happy and use that to break up your time on forums. Language study is one of those things for me.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

Is there any other language you can do cryptic crosswords in? With an inflected language I imagine it would be all but impossible.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/scarcerer
scarcerer
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Sure you can. Here is one in Finnish. Now solving that is another matter.

3 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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I imagine that it could be done with any language, but the nonsense of ours surely makes it much easier! I now want to try to write French crosswords! Boy.... accents are not going to make that easy!

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Judit294350

Yes, the ambiguity of whether something is a verb or a noun - let alone its case - helps with cryptics.

1 week ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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  1. Yup, so are lots of languages. Spanish has a huge body of loan words from Arabic, Visigothic, and even many words here and there from languages such as Taíno and Nahuátl. English is in no way special in this regard. Vietnamese has about as many Chinese loan words as English has French and Latin (which are, frankly, two stages of the same language) combined, and absorbed over a much longer period of time.

  2. Yeah, Spanish and French too. If you're living in China, Chinese is always going to be more useful. If you're living in Japan, Japanese, if you're living in Malaysia, Malay, and so on. Any language can open doors for you in terms of employment.

  3. Are... Are you arguing that the same isn't true for other languages? Learn German and experience Freud in his original language. Learn Italian for Dante and Machiavelli. Chinese for Sun Tzu, Spanish for Cervantes, and these are just the ones you've probably heard of. Spanish can also give you excellent authors like Márquez, Vietnamese gives you Nguyễn Du and many others. I'm not much of a film buff, but French films like Tomboy, which I saw recently, are excellent. For Spanish I really enjoyed Perfume de Violetas, films that make one think long after watching them.

  4. If you think that other languages can't compete with English in those things then I cannot reason with you.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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  1. This is something to be loved about most languages that have had empires attached to them, if not all languages under those circumstances! Spanish is plenty fascinating and you'll see its flag next to my name! Though, English still has some very impressive spread!

  2. Of course I recognize that English is not the only useful language. I am arguing that English is a very useful one due to how wide spread it is. I assure you though, I am plenty aware that countries exist where English is not widely known. Nor do I feel these countries need to learn English.

  3. I am extremely insulted by your thinking that I don't think that is true of ALL languages. I am actually a huge fan of foreign film. Our only real disagreement on this point is that instead of Freud I'll be using my German skills for Kafka, who is my favorite author, and I kick myself regularly for not being able to spell the original title of "The Metamorphosis." I stated already that I think most art from most countries is not given as much attention as it should be.

  4. Japanese slays English in this regard. French pronunciation, a quirk I love about it, opens it up for plenty of spoken word play.

I am not arguing for, "English is the best language ever!" The person I am responding to has insulted English multiple times, and I gave reasons to like it. You can look at my other posts on this very thread to see how enthusiastic I am about learning languages, and what can be gotten out of even rare ones. I was just defending one of many languages I love.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Roman_Huczok
Roman_Huczok
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Fair cop then, I perhaps came on a little strong because I'm used to encountering people who genuinely believe in the superiority of English. You can see many posts on this very thread arguing for the abolition of all languages besides English (or Esperanto, Esperanto supremacists being even more obnoxious than English supremacists from my experience). Anyway, my apologies.

Ah, I'll quickly point out with 1. though that many languages which have never had empires have the same thing, Vietnamese being an example of such a language. I mentioned Freud for my girlfriend, a psychologist with all of Freud's books. She wants to learn German for him.

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/carbsrule
carbsrule
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I haven't met a single Esperanto speaker who wants to abolish other languages, and I both hope and expect that I never will. The whole point is that it's a simple, neutral bridge language that anyone can learn and use, while retaining their native language(s).

In my personal experience, most Esperanto speakers are either already trilingual or are interested in or actively learning other languages. For instance, I speak Japanese, have studied some Korean and Chinese, and am currently studying Russian (and to a lesser extent Spanish and Indonesian).

6 days ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Andrealphus
Andrealphus
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With languages that didn't have empires I would say that when they have that they were usually either touched by several empires or they were huge trade hubs, both tend to add to the culture well I'd say.

6 days ago
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