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Thread: First Language?

  1. #1
    Raymott's Avatar
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    First Language?

    Hi Red, et al.

    Have you considered changing the "First Language" profile field to "Native Language"? There's been a huge increase in the number of obviously non-native English speakers who write "English", perhaps under the misapprehension that that's the first foreign language they are learning; or just as likely they have emigrated to US from Asia, and say their first language is now "English".
    This leads to problems with interpreting questions (Why on earth are you asking a question like that if you're a native English speaker?).
    In many cases, it would be far easier to give a useful answer if one knew the person's L1.
    Of course, no one is obliged to give that information (on this site) and can write whatever nonsense they like. (A note on why their native language is important would be useful too).
    I think the question is ambiguous and should be changed; or a note added ("if you speak another language better than English, please put this language").

    Thank you for considering this matter, which is causing annoyances at the coalface.

  2. #2
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
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    Re: First Language?

    I support Ray's suggestion.

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    Re: First Language?

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    Hi Red, et al.

    Have you considered changing the "First Language" profile field to "Native Language"? There's been a huge increase in the number of obviously non-native English speakers who write "English", perhaps under the misapprehension that that's the first foreign language they are learning; or just as likely they have emigrated to US from Asia, and say their first language is now "English".
    This leads to problems with interpreting questions (Why on earth are you asking a question like that if you're a native English speaker?).
    In many cases, it would be far easier to give a useful answer if one knew the person's L1.
    Of course, no one is obliged to give that information (on this site) and can write whatever nonsense they like. (A note on why their native language is important would be useful too).
    I think the question is ambiguous and should be changed; or a note added ("if you speak another language better than English, please put this language").

    Thank you for considering this matter, which is causing annoyances at the coalface.
    I agree with you. Forum Host, please change the "First Language" to "Native Language".....

  4. #4
    hanky is offline Key Member
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    Re: First Language?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    I support Ray's suggestion.
    I am with Anglika's agreement.

  5. #5
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    Re: First Language?

    I agree with you!

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    Searching for language is offline Senior Member
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    Re: First Language?

    I will just throw another monkey wrench into this. My first language, the language of my birth is German. I came to Canada at age 11, so English is definitely my "best language".

    However, native language is fine too. I have also felt that many people seem to think first language as first "foreign language"

  7. #7
    Trance Freak's Avatar
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    Cool Re: First Language?

    What if I were bilingual or even trilingual?
    What would my answer be?

  8. #8
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    Re: First Language?

    Quote Originally Posted by Trance Freak View Post
    What if I were bilingual or even trilingual?
    What would my answer be?
    You wouldn't have to change yours. My suggestion was for people who think they are following the guidelines, but aren't.

  9. #9
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    Re: First Language?

    What's a coalface?

  10. #10
    Kondorosi is offline Banned
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    Re: First Language?

    Quote Originally Posted by RonBee View Post
    What's a coalface?
    It is this:



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