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  1. #41
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    Default Re: British English or American accent?

    Wong wrote:
    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.
    It is, but at certain levels of strata within the society. There's no absolute here. Some people prefer one over the other. In Asia, preference is related to business, which is tied to education. That is, it's a matter of who you deem as the best language educator and who you deem you can make more money from once you're educated.

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

    Well, history is the answer there: the British have set up store in a few more countries than the Americans have, so I guess one could assume or suggest BE is more acceptable outside the US because the Brits have had a few more years 'educating the natives' than have the Yanks. However that may be, that was the past and this is the present. We are now living in the age of Media (tell your college teachers), and the US, I believe, leads the international market. Who needs English classes when a video will do? Tell your college teachers.

    Wong wrote:
    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?
    Your question borders on the absurd. Money's money. If you want someone's business you find a way to communicate irrespective of accent. As a corporate trainer, I have had opportunity to sit in on many sales meetings via phone conferences, and let me tell you, no one person can be said to speak BE or AE. Chinese-English, Japanese-English, Tiawanese-English, and so on, are the norm. No one sales person focuses on accent; they focus on the business at hand. I believe it's called professionalism.

    Wong wrote:
    I want opinions from only native English speakers, mainly UK and US citizens. Please state your nationality and your feelings about the accents.
    Oh I'm Canadian, eh? :D

  2. #42
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    Default Re: British English or American accent?

    I'll adopt you.

    :wink:

  3. #43
    Samantha Guest

    Default Re: British English or American accent?

    I agree with most of the Americans that have replied saying that they enjoy the sound a British accent (or at least what we think is British) but find our own accents easier to understand. We always enjoy the more exotic. I personally prefer the "small town america" accent that a lot of people associate with cowboys.

    I also fully agree with the statement that as long as you use proper grammar and are clear, I could care less. I called a company to order something I *needed* and was so disgusted with the operator's improper grammar, rude manner, and totally incoherent english (yes, he was from the US, I went to school with kids that spoke the way he did) that I was inches away from canceling my order.

    I have heard that when you're traveling, and you have an American accent, it's better to say that you're from Canada. I'm not sure how true this is because I've never done much traveling. But Canada's neutrality might be admired by some and disliked by others.

  4. #44
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    Default Re: British English or American accent?

    This American doesn't really have a preference. Every once in a while I see a British reporter on my telly, and I have no trouble understanding him.

    One more thing:

    Welcome to our friendly forum!



    English idioms
    http://www.usingenglish.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1697

    Brief Verse (Couplets)
    http://www.usingenglish.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1579

    :D

  5. #45
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    Very interesting topic. Being English and living in Belgium, I can tell you that while the kids at school are taught both Americn and English words, for instance car parts, the bonnet being the hood, the boot being the trunk etc. they are very discouraged from speaking with an American accent, it is really frowned upon. The problem is of course, the teenagers pick up the american accent form music, so once they have it, it is hard to lose. Of course there are also many differnt English accents and American accents too, but sorry, I am one of those, who really isn't keen on the American accent. Also someone mentioned it is very difficult to sepak antoher language with no trace of an accent, if you don't live in the country. Well, my husband is Belgian and has no trace of a Flemish accent when speaking English, in fact it often gives him problems at customs as they don't believe he is Belgian!! PEople here also thought I was the Belgian and that he was the English man, but maybe that is to do with his red hair!!!!!!! :D My kids all have different accents, the youngest sounds cockney, the middle one had a definate Flemish accent when speaking English and the eldest speaks very "nice English" Do we say the Queens English?

  6. #46
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    I think the contrast is between American English and British English. I wouldn't use English accent, since the language itself is English.

    The expression is indeed the Queen's English.

    :)

  7. #47
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    You could say English eccent to distinguish it from a Scottish accent or other variety within the UK. Other than that, I'd use British English.

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    You could say English eccent to distinguish it from a Scottish accent or other variety within the UK. Other than that, I'd use British English.
    I agree.

    :D

  9. #49
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    An English Accent in a film would generally be soemthing like David Niven's to me.

  10. #50
    Samantha Guest

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    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    An English Accent in a film would generally be soemthing like David Niven's to me.
    What type of accent does David Niven have, then? I've seen a few of his movies and it would be neat to put an accent name to a specific sound. :D

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