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Should we simplify spelling? (with English subtitles) | Karina Galperin

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(Full English subtitles are available for this talk -- click the CC button in the bottom right of your screen to turn subtitles on.) How much energy and brain power do we devote to learning how to spell? Language evolves over time, and with it the way we spell -- is it worth it to spend so much time memorizing rules that are filled with endless exceptions? Literary scholar Karina Galperin suggests that it may be time for an update in the way we think about and record language. The TED Talks channel features the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design -- plus science, business, global issues, the arts and more. Follow TED on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/TEDTalks Like TED on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TED Subscribe to our channel: https://www.youtube.com/TED
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Text Comments (436)
Naman Solanki (6 days ago)
Looking forward for such changes in all the languages of the world
Naman Solanki (6 days ago)
Excellent , wow really such changes will be adorable
John Doe (7 days ago)
E Spenish-spiiking wumen sedjested simplifaing Ingglish speling. (A Spanish-speaking woman suggested simplifying English spelling.)
IsaidwhatisaidPERIOD (4 months ago)
Tbh I don’t know why she’s complaining about Spanish spelling like it’s not hard at all it only took me two weeks to learn it lmao but I’d get why an English speaker would complain about English spelling lmao.
Maria Christ (1 year ago)
Ghostneedle1 (1 year ago)
I came to into this talk practically scoffing but came away with some food for thought.
m lacus (1 year ago)
Minuto 2 primer error. En castellano zara cara y sara tres letras y tres sonidos. No hace falta decir nada más.
Lou H (2 years ago)
Beautiful demonstration. I strongly believe in this in Spanish and in French too – bit more complicated in English that has moved so, so far away from its pronunciation.
Robert Nielsen (2 years ago)
Why is the title in English if the video is in Spanish?
Reinfred Addo (2 years ago)
What about our nation's precious spelling bees‽ Each contest would drag on for days, plus I would miss the satisfaction of watching some overconfident twerp lose the final round to a humble lad, by a single letter.
SilvanaDil (2 years ago)
This lady would commit suicide in China.
Yevhenii Kripak (2 years ago)
I find it very ironic that those people in the comments who oppose the simplification the most have the poorest grammar.
loveitorhateit127 (2 years ago)
I have a better title for this video: ¿Debemos simplificar la ortografía?
Ken Lenoir (2 years ago)
Let's build a super language that the whole world can use.
MedEighty (2 years ago)
I would go a step further and recommend that – as we're in a globalised and socially networked world – all languages replace their alphabets with the International Phonetic Alphabet and spell their words phonetically with it. This will make it so much easier to read and write text in different languages. However, we will definitely lose the etymological links between words in different languages and that may make it a little more difficult, in some cases, to learn other languages. For example, many languages that share the same root (e.g. Latin-based languages) currently spell many words in the same way (more or less), but pronounce them differently. With purely phonetic spellings, the same words would look completely different in these languages and this would increase the time taken by someone, who speaks one language, to learn another (at least as far as reading and comprehension are concerned). The benefits of phonetic spelling, however, may outweigh such an issue.
John Doe (7 days ago)
@Vishal 1. I’d suggest using the current English alphabet instead of using IPA. Unless if we want to reset much of modern computer architecture. 2. I’d suggest standardizing ‘phonetic spelling’ to British Received Pronunciation. It’s the clearest pronunciation of English. 3. I’d suggest the introduction of formal spelling and phonetic spelling. The kwik braun foks djamped ouve the leizi dog. (The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.)
Vishal (10 months ago)
English would split into different dialects then: IPA for Kiwi, Canadian, British and Scottish English would differ wildly and would even become incomprehensible to fellow Anglophones.
Steven Niedermeyer (2 years ago)
I wonder if removing the gender of words would help simplify grammar.
Alan Ortiz (2 years ago)
Okay, I agree that simplifying English would be helpful, but, talking about Spanish, which I think has one of the best pronunciation systems around.
Tidycats (2 years ago)
Oh ya, that pesky grammar and spelling really takes up hours of my day. Lol, I can't watch the video because of the liberal garbage you've been spewing lately. Professionalism is a key component of a successful life, and grammar/spelling is a major component of a professional appearance. Language and spelling is culture based, and yes, internet culture is a thing.
cheeseman (2 years ago)
I was gonna say something about it being a first world problem no one cares about but then it was in spanish so I had to look up where Argentina is and it is apparently a third world country which makes this a third world problem no one cares about.
Srdan1el (2 years ago)
The lady is talking about the spanish, english is almost perfect (i speak both), the think is that in spanish we have a lot of stupid rules that have stupid exceptions and things that we dont really need, and we spend a lot of time learning them, when we can be learning something else.
gregotox (2 years ago)
what she said: lets simplify language by removing useless leters that have no use in pronunciation whatsoever in order to upgrade our efficiency and speed when writing. what the comment section understood: "Lets speak in emojis".
Minty Cold (2 years ago)
its too late. Everyone would have to update a lot of things or have "misspellings" everywhere. Removing letters may affect the layout of the keyboard you use. If you were to try to get people to sign a petition for this they probably wouldn't want to, they would have to learn alot. Silent letters were once pronounced say kuh-night instead of just knight but over time people stopped using it. Convincing people to throw away some letters will be very hard. I also think that she is mostly focusing on her own country and not others. Though i do see the problem as some words taken from english and put into other languages sound similar. also written words can be easily identified.
Sandy Nagy (2 years ago)
I find it very misleading to have the description in English yet the entire talk is in Spanish. I don't mind subtitles and I think all languages are wonderful but I like to do housework and stuff while listening to Ted Talks and that's not possible here as I have to read subtitles. have the description in Spanish so I can watch it at another time with subtitles on.
MedEighty (2 years ago)
And if the title was in Spanish and you didn't know Spanish, you'd complain that you couldn't read the title.
Ricardo Z. G. (2 years ago)
"La utilidad de la neolengua" "Usefulness of newspeech"
Travis Grant (2 years ago)
Visit unspell at blogspot, it clarifies this topic of spelling.
Winding Light (2 years ago)
Complaining about spelling in Spanish... 😂
Dushyant Goel (2 years ago)
meanwhile, we indic people have a phonetic script. Thank you Panini .
Rafael Marfil (2 years ago)
De acuerdo!
Axphey007 (2 years ago)
Would have enjoyed, if that wasn't in Spanish version. Disliked !!
RitalUP (2 years ago)
I love the idea and I completely agree with it! but I notice a real issue.. As a French listening an Argentinian with English subtitles I also realise that orthographe is very useful to understand an other language. Most of the time it's tank's to the etymology that I understand the meaning of a word that I encounter for the first time.. And even in a language that i don't know. It can be the "h" that will guide me to the meaning of this word..
Kalle Lellacévej (10 months ago)
They have French subtitles now. 😉
RitalUP (2 years ago)
I want to add that in some languages most of the letters are silents.. In Spanish the word for 'cost' is 'costó' it's very similar. In French cost is 'coût', it's still close but we pronoun it like 'cu'.. It will then be harder for a Spanish to understand the word "cu" in a French text than 'coût' because the silence T will be missing.. I'm sure people understand my point..
newbin (2 years ago)
simplify spelling. By those who can't spell
Will R (2 years ago)
I'm an English teacher and I totally agree with this. Waste too much time working on obscene spellings. Take something like "manoeuvre". There is no way to justify a spelling that stupid.
Extys (2 years ago)
How about no?
Toby Peers (2 years ago)
THIS TALK IS ABOUT SPANISH Wê lost a lot uv tîmè at scħöòl lèàŕniñg spelliñg. Kidś ārè still löśiñg a lot uv tîmè at scħöòl wiτħ spelliñg. τħat's wħŷ Î want-wont tó ŝħãŕè a qυesţìòn wiτħ yöù Dö wê nêèd nëw spelliñg rülèś? Î bėlïèvè τħat yes, wê dö. Ør êvén bettèŕ, Î thiñk wê nêèd tó simplífŷ τħé ones-wunz wê ålreàdý havè. Nêìτħèŕ τħé qυesţìòn nør τħé answèŕ ārè nëw in τħé Spaniŝħ lañgυáĝè. τħey havè bėèn bõùnçiñg árõùnd fróm çentûrý tó çentûrý sinçè , wħen in τħé fìŕst grammàŕ gùîdè uv τħé Spaniŝħ lañgυáĝè, Antônïô dé Nebrija, set a clėàŕ and simple prinçíplè før õùŕ spelliñg "... τħus, wê havè tó wrîtè wòŕdś aś wê prónõùnçè τħem, and prónõùnçè wòŕdś aś wê wrîtè τħem." Êàĉħ sõùnd was-woś tó cørréspond tó one-wun lettèŕ, êàĉħ lettèŕ was-woś tó reprėśent a siñglè sõùnd, and τħôśè wħiĉħ did not reprėśent ãný sõùnd ŝħōùld bê rėmövèd. τħis ápprôàĉħ, τħé þħónetic ápprôàĉħ, wħiĉħ sãyś wê havè tó wrîtè wòŕdś aś wê prónõùnçè τħem, bôth iś and iśn't at τħé röòt uv spelliñg aś wê practiçè it tódây. THIS TALK IS ABOUT SPANISH
Cinek (2 years ago)
well there is one common simplified language - Esperanto.
Tripp1n_ (2 years ago)
This whole comment section is really conservative. To be honest I totally agree to everything she says. I have been learning Spanish for about 5 years now and I have gotten to the point where I could understand most of this video, but probably not context, without subtitels. After 5 years of training, our teachers are still introducing new grammatical rules, new exeptions. These changes, in spanish but also other langurages, won't just make it easier for everyday use from the native speakers but also easyer to forein speakers. It would make the langruage more welcomming and make it less likely to die out. (Not that spanish is in danger but smaller languages with only some speakers might be.)
ProfPepper58 (2 years ago)
The reason comment sections are sometimes turned off is because the Ted audience cannot be trusted to undertake quality discourse. They see something with a few words buzzwords they don't like in it and it's instantly invalidated.
Travis Wald (2 years ago)
If you asked me what languages needed simplification, Spanish would the last on my list...
npinero1 (2 years ago)
I am not sure I completely agree, given that I know both languages, Spanish and English. Some of these simplifications may hamper translations among separate languages. Although phonetics may reserve some translations, spelling some words differently may drive those on the edge of comprehension apart. To what degree? I am not certain. In a world where the same social networks have brought us a little closer together, this approach may pull us apart.
ツStefan (2 years ago)
Vuk Stefanović Karadžić has already achieved this with Serbian language. - [" Write as you speak and read as it is written. " It's that simple. (google the phrase and see for yourself)]
IkarusKommt (2 years ago)
BCS language has 4 different tones but they are not written, and it is impossible to read words if you don't know how they are pronounced. It is not "read as it is written", by far.
Stefan Nikola (2 years ago)
Brava! Her talk was just brilliant. English is in desperate need of spelling reform, also.
Trendy Lyrix (2 years ago)
but she's talking in spanish
anticosmopolitan (2 years ago)
I thought 'progress' was all about making things more complex and sophisticated; yet the 'progressives' always try to bring things down to the lowest common denominator... The more education there is in the world, the more it needs to be dumbed down. Hmm...
harrypagetflashman1 (2 years ago)
anticosmopolitan no progress is about making complex things become simple eg. modern word processor vs. Gutenberg's movable type...
leadfoot9x (2 years ago)
I just realized that I could've watched this with subtitles if I wanted. Nah.
Dude Swood (2 years ago)
Read the English subtitles, I don't agree.
For all English speakers: she is talking about a reform in Spanish, not in English. There was never a mention to reform other languages.
ExWhiteWolf (2 years ago)
César Gerardo González Bañuelos This is true however an argument can be made for any language.
Agnaye Ochani (2 years ago)
If you're like me and you don't understand Spanish, hit that cc button for English subtitles, thanks.
Kassidar (2 years ago)
There are huge logistic problems with trying to go to a phonetic system as recommended here. Ignoring the fact that there are sounds that are have to letter for them in English such as SHe, aSIa, THink, THis, there are even less solvable problems like the fact that there are only 5 vowels a,e,i,o,u,.. and y, yet there are well over 11 different pronunciations for these vowels off the top of my head. All this is to say that if you want a new alphabet (which you must if you want a phonetic system) then you must either; change every keyboard, every book, every document in existence since before that change, or render them obsolete. And that's doable. Problem inducing, but simple enough to go about actually doing. The real issue when going from the current system to a phonetic system is that it will change HOW we read these words. See, in Eglnsih, as an exmlape language lagnague we olny need the frsit and lsat wrod to be in pclae and the inbetewen lteres penrset to raed the wrod. This is precisely because we cant phonetically sound out the word so during our learning to read our brains overcomes this issue by learning the whole word and reading the whole word in one go. We recognise English's (and other non-phonetic languages') words with similar speed and in a similar way as we recognise faces. This reading method significantly increases our reading speed. Secondarily: Having archaic spelling not only tells you about the origin of a word but also its relation to other words that do Not sound like they're related. eg; only, once, alone, All have the *ON* in common and all share the same root idea of "ONe". "Singularity". This helps your brain build relation connections when you learn them whether you consciously realise it at some point or never at all. Thirdly: having non-phonetic spelling makes homophones distinct to the reader There They're Their All sound similar (or identical depending on your pronunciation of "they're") but having them spelt differently makes the meaning clear before you've parsed the sentence and in doing so also speeds up the parsing of the sentence more the earlier in the sentence it come. English is spoken in such geographically separate areas that different accents, and consequent phonetic spelling, would render their scripts illegible to each other. **FUNNY HOW THE BIGGEST PROBLEM TAKES THE LEAST TIME TO EXPLAIN* She says that you cant express your individuality in spelling like you can in speech and punctuation by changing your pitch, rhythm, ect and that in spelling "it's either Right or Wrong". But did I not, in this very text, spell things incorrectly explaining how we read whole words in ONe go to express myself. Next; you already can spell things "incorrectly" to convey a meaning. I happen to be dissatisfied with the ambiguity of the word "so". Its proper meaning when referring to an amount is to specify an aforementioned or specific amount;[ _to ride you must be so high_] but there is a second newer use which is to signify extent: [_he was so tall_]. I therefor spell the 2nd version like so "SOO" in the same way that "TO" and "TOO" are different, since "TOO" also carries the idea of excessive extent: [_he was too tall_]. If you really wanted to write conveying individuality ect. you'd have to write on musical sheet paper anyway. Again, doable but not very practical. And besides, you can already do that if you want And simply spelling phonetically as she suggest wouldn't accomplish that conveyance goal. This whole suggestion to simplify spelling strikes me as: "learning languages is hard :( The system I'm familiar and grew up with works and is easier.". Nowhere is the case of non-phonetic spelling making communication clearer more apparent than in Japanese where they have an entire system separate to their phonetic system which they CHOOSE to write in for clarity's sake. Not because using the Phonetic system is "wrong". This is because there are many cases where the phonics alone would cause confusion due to lack of disambiguation (less of a problem when speaking as there is situational context and pitch stress to clarify homophones). But then again I don't expect this speaker to be much of a linguist considering she's giving her talk in her own language: the one which is already simplified to the point of being a phonetic system with anomalies. If she were a linguist or at least had done her research you'd think she'd give the speech in the language most renowned around the world for it's ridiculously inconsistent spelling rules: English. Which is of course the main language of TED, the platform she's speaking from.
MrID36 (2 years ago)
SImply put, no. Unlike Spanish, it would be impossible to simplify English spelling due to the many various accents that the English language has. Who is to decide which is the authoritative spelling? At the end of the day, English spelling and grammar is a cultural ordeal which is to be preserved as much as possible.
Francis Albrecht (2 years ago)
Why is the title and description in english but the video in spanish? There should be different channels for different languages.
Vic Rattlehead (2 years ago)
how about not naming the video in english if the video is not in english?dislike
Joshua Hilbig (2 years ago)
This is funny, because Spanish is one of the simplest languages to spell in the world. I won a spelling competition in Ecuador when I was 8.
Joshua Hilbig (2 years ago)
That could be, IkarusKommt. I also think it's because I've always been an avid reader.
IkarusKommt (2 years ago)
It is because you already knew a language that makes all the phonetic distinctions that Spanish has only in the orthography. Native Ecuador children do not know other languages and it is not easy for them at all.
EroomYrrah (2 years ago)
Doctors that destroy health, lawyers that destroy justice, and teacher that destroy education. Welcome to Rockefeller's wild wild west.
El Lobo (2 years ago)
ゆい714 (2 years ago)
It's always great to pose arguments for these sorts of things. However, it really doesn't make sense. We learn English as children. For those learning English as a second language, it's a bit much to ask not only that culture to change their language for you but for the world to change for you. It's only English.. not exactly Japanese. Most aspects of our civilization are evolved, not designed. I generally agree that we should design civilization instead, however, language isn't one of those things.
TOMO (2 years ago)
ゆい714 good thing they were talking about Spain then! but it was an interesting idea on English language
Smartphone Phone (2 years ago)
I don't know Spanish. But the rule write it as you hear must be in the root of any language. In Russian the rule almost works, except some sounds that are very similar like 'и' and 'е', 'о' and 'а'.
100nitrog (2 years ago)
Don't even get me started on the cyrillic alphabet. The 'p' is a square n, the 'r' is a p, the 'z' is a 3...That's why they never made it to the moon. For the record, I'm joking.
xRockycherrYx (2 years ago)
How about we teach children a tittle about etymology instead? At least, when it comes to those words that the most difficult to spell. Anyway please let languages develop "naturally" with a few words beeing added or removed from common usage every ten years. Such a drastic change always erases history and traceability! Languages are mirrors that reflect all that makes up a culture (or a cluster of cultures), its past, its origin and even its mentality(/mentalities)! (Also, I'm sure that having to learn a language with difficult spelling strengthens your cognitive abilities!)
xRockycherrYx (2 years ago)
Well, of course not in those countries. I'm talking about the US, for example. But even in countries with limited resources, regular languages should be taught. I'm pretty sure it would lower the average IQ (anywhere) if children were to learn a simplified language, because the brain needs to be trained from an early age on. Besides, they wouldn't be able to communicate with people in other countries, when it comes to English (they would understand each other, but that's not the point). You can't teach children in the US (e.g.) a simplified language (because then you would be denying them the connection to the history of the language), but you also can't teach different forms of English in different countries, because that would inevitably cause people in the US to look down on people in countries with limited resources (even more than many already do).
Edwin Luciano (2 years ago)
"How about we teach children...about etymology instead?" Because in many countries resources are extremely limited. The less time and money spent in explaining how words were written in Latin can be used to teach Math and Science. *Better* spent, IMO.
Shirley Poppy (2 years ago)
So, I am Italian and we pronunciate words as we see them, letter by letter. Otherwise, we have a very difficult grammar and a very rich vocabulary. I like the complexity of all the languages, expecially the English one! The fact that you often have to pronunciate a word so different from the letters that compound it, it's simply splendid! I don't think we should change the rules perfected through ages. I know that a language that doesn't change forever it's a dead language too. But for now, let's change something else! :P By the way, if I did some (or lots :P) of errors in my comment, please feel free to tell me that kindly.
Shirley Poppy (2 years ago)
Edwin Luciano The "H" is always silent, but in the middle of a word. In that case it modify the syllable's​ sound. So yes, there is! ^-^
Edwin Luciano (2 years ago)
There is a silent H in Italian too.
satellite964 (2 years ago)
Idiocracy at full swing ladies and gentlemen.
Marianne (2 years ago)
Why is the title in English when the talk is in Spanish? I obviously wouldn't have bothered clicking if I knew it was in a language I don't speak or understand.
ExWhiteWolf (2 years ago)
Marianne Hovde There is this thing called subtitles.
Edwin Luciano (2 years ago)
"I obviously wouldn't have bothered clicking if I knew it was in a language I don't speak or understand." And since the more people click on the video the better, they made sure they put the title in English so that you and others would click on it!
Bonchops (2 years ago)
First came constant surveillance, then came alternative facts, and now Newspeak... Cheers, Orwell.
TOMO (2 years ago)
yeah it is in the title dude...
Edwin Luciano (2 years ago)
This video is not about changing the way people speak but the way people SPELL.
Jakob Buck (2 years ago)
no people just need to be smarter
Leocram Vinci (2 years ago)
Totalmente de acuerdo... En alguna noche me quedé despierto pensando en un español simplificado y perfecto. También lo pensé en ingles y portugués... Las 3 necesitan estos cambios... Es más, en los 3 idiomas mencionados se desprecian letras que hacen un sonido único pero por alguna cuestión la representamos con la unión de 2 letras -ch, ll, rr- y que ni siquiera se incluyen comúnmente en el abecedario, ni idea porque. Esas y la ñ merecen más cariños, eliminar un par de letras y remplazar otras seria lo ideal. Por ejemplo que la K sea la única que tenga ese sonido y la C pase a ser la CH, solamente la S y la Z mantendrían sus sonidos. O se podría eliminar totalmente la C y se podría usar un símbolo del cirílico, ч, que tiene el mismo sonido de la CH, ya para darle novedad.
Edwin Luciano (2 years ago)
No se trata de simplificar el idioma sino de simplificar la ortografía.
Polly g (2 years ago)
ive always though in english most rules make no sense,silent letters who thought that was a good idea?
Alfredo Ornelas (2 years ago)
Hosam (2 years ago)
No hablo espanol
Op Mister (2 years ago)
This is why Trump wants to build a wall 😒
Edwin Luciano (2 years ago)
Does he? He says he does and it helped get him elected. But does he?
Feta Cheezz (2 years ago)
I came here just to click the dislike button without actually watching the video!
TOMO (2 years ago)
Feta Cheezz so you basically gave them profit and attention instead of giving them profit and attention?
Krunoslav Stifter (2 years ago)
WE should always try to make things more elegant and simpler but if you look at how the chat and social media generation is shaping language, its clear that we are getting faster way to send words over text but less information and less deep meaningful information is communicated. So I'm not sure that simpler spelling is the solution, more like deeper reading and communication even if you use sign language or Morse code is what is needed in my humble opinion. My collusion is that language is a living breathing thing, and works best when its left to evolve organically. You can't engineer it you see fit, as so many have tried. Last time it worked it was monarchy. I heard French was being spelled differently than its being read because that is the way to control who is educated and who is not, who has to go trough controlled education system and who does not. In case of my language Croatian we write and read the same way, but that didn't make us better communicators and language itself is missing a lot of words which it adopts from other Languages.
Krunoslav Stifter (2 years ago)
IkarusKommt (2 years ago)
You don't write and read in the same way. BCS language has 4 different tones which are never written but always read.
Krunoslav Stifter (2 years ago)
Thank you.
CScottyW (2 years ago)
Point well made!
CremeCrimson (2 years ago)
My favorite part of the English language is its versatility. If there's a language with a different alphabet--Chinese--Arabic--Russian, you can still write the words with the roman alphabet while keeping the phoneticism. Then, while writing words out from those languages rules can spark out, arabic, persian, and hebrew are well known for having the 'phlegm' throat sound in some words. you can do kh, gh, or whatever (this checks out in Farsi). English doesn't need to be simplified, words are their own art; The rules can allow every language operate in it. Literature would become stale. You need a large vocabulary for reading to be enjoyable. You can still speak English if you're an english learner, but there are different levels of being able to speak english. No one wants the skill curve to be droopy.
shud wee like english mo gud gud fo idoits
CScottyW (2 years ago)
The same to you! G'day!
My response is below, just mispelled: dljshskvksdhcjadviluashdvliasdlijdsfuckyoukljasdbnjadvljagsdlcgasdjvasldvgsal
CScottyW (2 years ago)
I don't know if you heard, but she didn't say to get rid of grammar.
David Alvarado (2 years ago)
why is this in spanish? ya me estaba preparando para escucharlo en inglés :V
crankdatstereo (2 years ago)
At least there is not thousands of characters to memorise. English could be harder.
airsoftfarmer (2 years ago)
hey ted, how about some real science for once?
CScottyW (2 years ago)
TED: Technology, Entertainment, and Design. It's not all about science.
Gonzalo Calvo (2 years ago)
what is nueba?
memoryhero (2 years ago)
SMH - YouTube comment section, famous for misspelling everything under the sun, now in unified outrage over slackening of rigorous standards they never had.
ratamacue0 still, it's about comment section, not bout the video, I guess
ratamacue0 (2 years ago)
memoryhero decrying a video they didn't watch.
CM Speedster (2 years ago)
Why not universities are already turning out idiot snow flakes that can't deal with life. Why stop there just make thing easier for idiots!
Epifanio Melendez (2 years ago)
411 pple aren't educated enough to appreciate and understand a second language.
Juffruy Buruthuun (2 years ago)
why are the comments disabled on 'What young women believe about their own sexual pleasure | Peggy Orenstein'? That's a great video you should be proud of it
Exalted.Forest (2 years ago)
I guess TED watchers have become brainless keyboard warriors as well. If you can't read fucking subtitles you should get a book on ABCs; if you can't comprehend this is solely in reference to the Spanish language and it's conformities with foreign languages then you must have never attempted learning another language... Fucking morons the lot of you-who puts a fucking "H" in huevo to spell 'egg'.
Pipe2DevNull (2 years ago)
I have long appreciated the spelling of Spanish. It's much easier than English or French.
jAujAl1 (2 years ago)
What's wrong with the etymological approach ? It's logical, it helps connecting meaning between words of a same language, and, more importantly, between words of different languages. Every suggestion that is being made in this video would make it drastically harder for Spanish children to learn French for instance, who rely heavily on the silent H, the difference between Z, C and S, and between the B and the V. The learning of Italian would be affected as well. Such a gutting of the Spanish language would undoubtedly build a gap between the Spanish language and their neighbour's. Shouldn't we better the way we teach spelling instead of changing spelling itself ? Stop teaching vocabulary by heart but instead go back to learn why the vocabulary is built that way? It has the benefit of better understand the history of the language and to sharpen children's logical thinking while they learn a language.
dothedeed (2 years ago)
Aoccdrnig to rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be at the rghit pclae. The rset can be a toatl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe.
staffehn (2 years ago)
Astonishing how it is much easier to read this text really fast, rather than at a moderate/slow pace. ^^
Max Gorden (2 years ago)
No we shouldn't make it 'easier'. Just cause your language has so structure isn't our fault.
IkarusKommt (2 years ago)
How is it "fairly meaningless"?
dothedeed (2 years ago)
"ough" sometimes sounds like "uff" (tough) or "u" (through) or "o" (dough)
Zutaca (2 years ago)
silent k sometimes silent g sometimes silent e sometimes silent u sometimes silent h sometimes ei, a, ay, ai all make same sound as in cake x is sometimes the same as in xylophone and sometimes the same as in ox c is sometimes the same as in cat and sometimes the same as cease y is sometimes a consonant and sometimes a vowel i, y, ea, ee, and e sometimes all the same as in read i and y sometimes make the same sound as in why ea sometimes pronouned as in bread and sometimes as in wheat t sometimes same as c and sh as in pronunciation I could go on and on.
Oddsors (2 years ago)
English isn't much better. Just think of the wasted brainpower spent on learning the fairly meaningless ie-ei rule (deceive, believe).
fangorn23 (2 years ago)
YES FINALLY AN IDEA I CAN GET BEHIND. Mostly I just want the words in english that have no origin in the english language or in latin to be spelled like its pronounced. what in the F is the point of spelling words using english letters for a non-english word if I end up sounding like a jackass to the non-english speakers I learned the word from? Its disrespectful, and it defeats the purpose of anglicizing words in the first place of making them understandable to english speakers. Ironically, the speaker delivers the speech in spanish which at least as accent marks to give you a hint how the word is supposed to be pronounced. English should have kept those.
burn her with fire before she can reproduce
Kylin (2 years ago)
can't speak for Spanish, but completely unnecessary for English
TOMO (2 years ago)
Kibool that is why I find Chinese one the most creative and favourite languages of mine
dothedeed (2 years ago)
true- thanks for reminding me what the poem was about
Kylin (2 years ago)
dothedeed Mandarin Chinese has 4 tones. Cantonese however has more. The poem you're referring to is in fact about lions where every word is a different tone in "shi". However, I mentioned Chinese because its traditional writing, while beautiful, is tedious to learn. English writing is mainly phonetic while Chinese isn't. You must learn each character individually to know the language and in that case, simplication is necessary. English does not have that problem and can no way compare
dothedeed (2 years ago)
Isn't that because Chinese had tones? I remember hearing about some really long poem which only had 1 word but the meaning / tones changed? I think it was about a journey to find a lion / dragon or something.
Kylin (2 years ago)
dothedeed English has exceptions in spelling but really, this is nothing in comparison to Chinese.
Qu Bird (2 years ago)
Why do people go up this stage with crap like this in their minds?
Oliver B (2 years ago)
The reason English is written the way it is, is so that people can tell what something means regardless of how you say it. If everything was written entirely phonetically than we would have 20 variations of the written English language. English language is the same to everyone when it is written down. Some words may not be pronounced correctly but writing matters More than speech. If you don't know a word, you can also figure it out based on its spelling. Telephone is the best example. Tele- distance. phone-sound. These words originated from another language and we incorporated their meanings into new words.
100nitrog (2 years ago)
Overseer and supervisor mean the exact same thing, except they have Germanic and Latin roots respectively.
216trixie (2 years ago)
No. I read and was read to a lot early on. By second grade, I had a college level reading level. One day the teacher busted me for talking. To humiliate students, she made them walk to the front of the class and try and spell a hard word. She called me up, told me to spell "encyclopedia". I smiled, wrote it correctly on the chalkboard, and happily walked back to my seat. { I did get beaten up a lot in school though, hmm}
216trixie (2 years ago)
Why, are you a narcissist?
216trixie (2 years ago)
Sry. Nice try. I've got a lot of loving friends.
Bernardo Patiño (2 years ago)
100nitrog Your response gives me life
100nitrog (2 years ago)
Your peers didn't wail on you because you were smart. They did it because you seem insufferable even as an adult.
Rohan Panicker (2 years ago)
No, because when we learn words we remember the image of the written word, not the syllables, therefore it wouldn't make much of a difference if any.
Panay (2 years ago)
I oppose this simply because it makes life more uninteresting. I like the quirks of language; they make it much more complex, which isn't necessarily a bad thing Having a more complicated and harder to learn language surely encourages and prepares people for learning in other areas. By getting children to learn the intricacies of language, they are better prepared for learning the complexities of other things Also being able to spell makes me feel superior to people who can't... its a self-esteem thing...
rankemperor (2 years ago)
Writing is the problem. Having little symbols to convey communication is a 'great evil'. There are no pheremones; body language; in short, it doesn't relate to everyday life.
Patrick Starmie (2 years ago)
i wonder how she would act if someone was saying "Spanish is too hard, it's a waste of time to learn, we should simplify it"
JustOneAsbesto (2 years ago)
No, it helps you identify the stupid people.
Mothuzad (2 years ago)
Why not identify the stupid people with markers that have inherent value, and thus get twice as much value for that education time? Many rules of spelling have no inherent value, outside of being an extremely rough gauge of intellect. Mathematics is a better gauge and it has practical applications. So use that instead.
PEG2002 (2 years ago)
You really think i'm going to read the subtitles? I'm fucking dyslexic and besides the whole point i'm guessing is to simplify English and yet you use the complicated English to tell me that??? WTF!
fourZerglings (2 years ago)
Soviet government made a reform of Russian language, removing duplicating letters and simplyifing the rules. We are a lot closer to "pronounced as written" than other languages (there still are some weird cases remaining). It went fine, but I guess because prior the time peasants and workers did not have mass education.
MrNicoJac (2 years ago)
Saw all the dislikes, was like "oh this is interesting, I'll go in with an open mind and see if everyone is over-biased" Turns out it isn't in English. Top comment says: title in English -> video should be too. I agree completely. Does that make me biased too? Probably... but at least I'm like everyone else I guess ;p
Chode Master (2 years ago)
Isn't spelling easy enough? Simplify? I think she means dumbing down
puellanivis (2 years ago)
Warum nicht? Deutsch hat schon in 1996 solche gemacht.

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