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  1. Anonymous
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    #1

    British English or American accent?

    I am a student in China. Because of the Hollywood movies, American songs and much more frequent contact with US than that of UK, American accent seems more popular.

    However, the college teachers suggest that British accent is more acceptable in the world, especially in the world outside US. Is it true?

    I want to know how would UKers react to American accent speaking callers and vice versa.

    Do Americans like British accent on the phone when it is a sales call, for example?

    I want opinions from only native English speakers, mainly UK and US citizens. Please state your nationality and your feelings about the accents.

    Thanks.

  2. Anonymous
    Guest
    #2
    One accent should not be regarded as being better than another.

    One accent is not more acceptable than the other.

    Generally speaking, people whose first language is English appreciate the different speaking styles that English speakers from different English speaking countries have. I don't think anyone can say that he or she doesn't like the way an American sounds or a British accent sounds.

    Keep in mind also that there are Australian accents, Scottish accents, Irish accents, South African accents, New Zealand accents etc. There are many types of "accents" in the English language. One is not better than the other. The main focus is usually on American and British Accents.

    Most people whose second language is English have an accent, but it is usually their own accent.

    Unless someone is living in an English speaking country, it would be very difficult to not speak with an accent.

    Speak in the way that you feel the most comfortable with. The most important thing is correct pronunciation and that people understand you when you speak.


    I'm from the U.S.

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    #3
    However, there are certainly issues to do with pronunciation that would make the difference between being acceptable or not.
    I'm not a teacher, so please consider any advice I give in that context.

  3. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: British or American accent?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wong
    I am a student in China. Because of the Hollywood movies, American songs and much more frequent contact with US than that of UK, American accent seems more popular.

    However, the college teachers suggest that British accent is more acceptable in the world, especially in the world outside US. Is it true?

    I want to know how would UKers react to American accent speaking callers and vice versa.

    Do Americans like British accent on the phone when it is a sales call, for example?

    I want opinions from only native English speakers, mainly UK and US citizens. Please state your nationality and your feelings about the accents.

    Thanks.
    In my opinion, the accent doesn't matter. Diction and correct rponunciation matter in either dialect. --USA

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    #5
    I'm from the UK and I really couldn't care less about the accent as long as it's comprehensible. BE speakers have few if any difficulties understanding AE, so it wouldn't bother me at all. 8)

  4. Kathryn
    Guest
    #6

    English Accents

    I am an American who grew up on the West Coast of the United States and have what I consider to be a very plain accent. British English comes across to me as polished, fluid and calming. I also feel there is something "upper crust" and refined about the sound of an English accent.

    Personally, I think that American English is easier to understand (of course, I'm biased) but lacks the aesthetic, phonetic appeal of the English accent.

    In the United States, I also prefer a Southern American accent (Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, etc.) to accents used in other parts of the country as well as accents primarily used on television and in movies.

    Alas, the grass is always greener on the other side...

  5. HPRoxMySox
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    #7
    I'm from America and I personally like how British accents sound more than American one's. I think they sound a lot more proper and sophisticated. I think American accents are easier to understand though, seeing as I grew up here.

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    #8
    I'm not sure you'd say that about all British accents.


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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    I'm not sure you'd say that about all British accents.


    I'm from Britain, and I don't think it matters which kind of English you speak. I always tell my students planning to go abroad; you will hear many kinds of English when you go to (insert country here); so don't rely on just one accent.

    Incidentally, we have two teachers from New Zealand, and recently one was "fired" from a school he was sent to teach at, due to him having "poor English" (he has a rather strong Kiwi accent) :(

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    #10
    That's hard- I can't see anything wrong with a Kiwi accent. ;-(

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