Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

For the discussion of language mechanics, grammar, vocabulary, trends, and other such linguistic topics, in english and other languages.

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SpitValve
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Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby SpitValve » Fri May 30, 2008 6:29 pm UTC

A more specific version of the Post Your Voice thread (or whatever we called it) in General.

I thought it'd be interesting to put together a few fairly diagnostic sentences and then get you guys to post yourselves reading them out.

Suggested post format:

My location:
Where my accent's from (if different):
[Link to audio file]
Comments on pronunciation.

Here's the sentences:
"My aunts aren't ants."
"Mary married merrily."
"Let's talk about torque."
"Seeing the Ford, some were awed, others thought it was odd." (previously didn't have "Seeing the Ford")
"The fish'n'chips are about six or seven dollars."
"If you dance to trance you can't romance if you dance like you have ants in your pants."
"I would rather not lather with Father's soap."
"Holding a beer in his bare arms, he fought a bear."
"Transplant the graph, please." (also new)
"It's not about a water-boat, it's about a boot" - (newerer)
"I skated and played on the ice, gliding about proudly" - (newest)
"The Radical Radiator Raid" - (newest)

Why I chose those sentences: (don't look if you think it'll spoil your "natural" recording)
Spoiler:
"Aunts" is "ants" in the US and sometimes in Canada, and "ahnts" in many other places. Some places (e.g. NZ) drop the "r" in "aren't" making it sound very similar to "aunt".
"Mary", "marry" and "merry" - all sorts of crazy stuff happens here. Different ones sound the same for different people.
"talk", "torque" - sound very similar in NZ. Also "about" is distinctive in Canada.
"awed", "odd" - in my native accent are very distinct, but seem to be quite similar in North America. My "awed" rhymes with "Ford" however...
"fish'n'chips" - for distinguishing between kiwis and aussies. "six" and "seven" are also quite distinctive.
"dance"/"pants" etc - Don't rhyme in "British" type accents, but do rhyme in "North American" type accents
"lather"/"rather"/"father" - 2 out of 3 of them rhyme. Which one doesn't depends on your location...
"beer"/"bare"/"bear" - always similar sounding, but sometimes actually identical.
"transplant" and "graph" - checking out short versus long "a"s.
About/boat/boot - for Canadians
"water" - does the "t" become a "d"? do you keep the "r"? & subtle differences in the "a"
"I skated and played on the ice, gliding about proudly" - apparently another US/Canada differentiator? "proud" is definitely different
"Radical radiator" - "rad" or "raid" ?


(yes, I'm aware there's a bit of NZ bias in what I chose... feel free to suggest a few more and I'll add them to the list)

Edit: Added another one.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby beastie » Fri May 30, 2008 7:14 pm UTC

Here goes!

My location: London. Yes it says Manchester on the left but I didn't pick up the local accent. No comments on pronunciation, I just found the sentences a bit strange :) And I sound like I have a very high-pitched voice which I don't in real life.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby ZLVT » Sat May 31, 2008 3:29 am UTC

SpitValve wrote:Here's the sentences:


Here're the sentences. A pet peeve. I have no audio thingy. i have a mic. Is there some site you can upload audio to and it makes a file and keeps it?
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby ave_matthew » Sat May 31, 2008 7:00 pm UTC

Here you go,
Southern Manitoba, Canada, near winnipeg.
accent-southern-manitoba-canada.mp3
my accent in mp3
(548.98 KiB) Downloaded 331 times

accent-southern-manitoba-canada.ogg
my accent in Ogg
(495.6 KiB) Downloaded 119 times
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Out of the Blue » Thu Jun 05, 2008 5:38 am UTC

I'm from Northern California (Sacramento area), US
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accent recording.mp3
(400.49 KiB) Downloaded 326 times

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beastie
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby beastie » Sat Jun 07, 2008 9:59 am UTC

It sometimes amazes me how different some accents sound although we're all speaking English :)

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby ozalba » Sat Jun 07, 2008 2:39 pm UTC

I always fancied travelling Britain with a recorder, getting people to speak a short passage.

Here's my effort:

Location: NSW, Australia
Accent from Glasgow, Scotland (moderated by time in Edinburgh)
accent.mp3
(176.25 KiB) Downloaded 292 times


I love the way accents affect people's impressions of how words should be spelt. For example, I recently saw "court" written, when the person meant "caught"; it's like they are thinking "we don't pronounce our 'r' here, but I probably have to put one in." I have noticed this on other occasions Down Under, such as with sought/sort. It's most amusing, but sad at the same time.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Kizyr » Sat Jun 07, 2008 5:46 pm UTC

Location: Arlington, Virginia, USA (Northern Virginia)
Accent: partly Southern, partly neutral American (I grew up in Nashville, Tennessee, before moving for college)

Sorry if the filesize is a bit larger... I usually use variable bitrate. KF
accent-northernvirginia-usa.mp3
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby eternal luna » Sun Jun 08, 2008 9:11 am UTC

Location: Sydney, Australia
Accent hails from: no effing idea. People keep commenting on it, but I can't pick out anything different.
Accent recording

@beastie: Wow, I could barely understand what you were saying without reading the lines at the same time.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Mmmm, Pi » Sun Jun 08, 2008 10:40 am UTC

My location: Birmingham, UK
Where my accent's from (if different): Well, I'm actually from Cambridge, UK, but my mum's from Liverpool and I've picked up all kinds of stuff from people at uni, so I've no idea really.
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accent.mp3
(435.14 KiB) Downloaded 348 times
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby SpitValve » Sun Jun 08, 2008 5:52 pm UTC

eternal luna wrote:Location: Sydney, Australia
Accent hails from: no effing idea. People keep commenting on it, but I can't pick out anything different.
Accent recording


You sound partially North American and partially Australian to me...

The way you say "odd" sounds very Aussie, but you pronounce your "r"s like a North American, so "aren't" and "dollars" etc do not sound Australian at all.

You are an enigma :) Did you go to an international school or something?

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby 4=5 » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:48 pm UTC

pacific northwest
my dad spoke in all kinds of weird accents when I was a kid and I do strange stuff with "t"s
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accent.mp3
(662.37 KiB) Downloaded 277 times

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Mat
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Mat » Sun Jun 08, 2008 8:00 pm UTC

Here's mine. I'm from brighton (south of england)

I kinda started giggling half way through cause I sounded pretty ridiculous :oops:
zomgaccent.ogg
(373.14 KiB) Downloaded 185 times

I think my accent is more exaggerated here cause I'm talking to myself and trying to pronounce everything clearly, but maybe it just sounds strange cause I'm not used to hearing recordings of myself.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby bencoder » Sun Jun 08, 2008 8:35 pm UTC

My location: Reading, UK (go to uni here and may have picked up some mash of accents)
Where my accent's from (if different): Brighton UK
accents.mp3
(252.04 KiB) Downloaded 234 times

I think I was trying to pronounce everything "properly" so it may not have actually come out like that if I was talking normally (but those aren't exactly normal sentences that one would say)

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby 4=5 » Sun Jun 08, 2008 11:00 pm UTC

that would explain why it sounded so odd,
it seemed slightly stilted

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby ave_matthew » Mon Jun 09, 2008 9:44 pm UTC

4=5, did you say floored or ford? I heard floored?
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Mmmm, Pi » Mon Jun 09, 2008 10:14 pm UTC

bencoder wrote:My location: Reading, UK (go to uni here and may have picked up some mash of accents)
Where my accent's from (if different): Brighton UK
accents.mp3

I think I was trying to pronounce everything "properly" so it may not have actually come out like that if I was talking normally (but those aren't exactly normal sentences that one would say)

That really does sound stilted. By the sound of it you'd be perfectly understandable if you talked normally. Then again, I would have said that about everybody who'd posted their voice here.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby cypherspace » Mon Jun 09, 2008 11:22 pm UTC

Another UK'er, but I have done two...

I'm from London (Harrow, precisely) originally so the first one is in that accent, which is still how I talk. I've also lived in Wales for several years now so I've done one in a typical South Wales accent, which I think is pretty accurate.
accent.mp3
(183.82 KiB) Downloaded 156 times

accentwelsh.mp3
(188.58 KiB) Downloaded 167 times
"It was like five in the morning and he said he'd show me his hamster"

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby 4=5 » Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:32 am UTC

ave_matthew wrote:4=5, did you say floored or ford? I heard floored?

I said ford but the vowel is the same as floored without the "l"

I really liked the welsh accent :)
Last edited by 4=5 on Wed Jun 11, 2008 1:51 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby bencoder » Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:47 am UTC

Mmmm, Pi wrote:That really does sound stilted. By the sound of it you'd be perfectly understandable if you talked normally. Then again, I would have said that about everybody who'd posted their voice here.


You're right, here we go, I redid it:
accents2.mp3
(210.07 KiB) Downloaded 140 times

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Sungura » Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:10 pm UTC

Edited within:
SpitValve wrote:
My location: Southeast Michigan, USA
Where my accent's from (if different): Midwest
[Link to audio file] - uh...no can do
Comments on pronunciation.

Here's the sentences:
"My aunts aren't ants." - aunts and ants pronounced the same (as ants)
"Mary married merrily." - mary and the first part of married is the same, merrily is different
"Let's talk about torque." - Talk has a long a, torque rhymes with pork
"Seeing the Ford, some were awed, others thought it was odd." awed sounds like the tool (the same a sound as "ahhh"), and odd is, well totally different because it's an o not an a! odd rhymes with pod.
"The fish'n'chips are about six or seven dollars." - "fishinchips"
"If you dance to trance you can't romance if you dance like you have ants in your pants." - rhyme (dance/trance and ants/pants)
"I would rather not lather with Father's soap." - rather and lather the same "ather"
"Holding a beer in his bare arms, he fought a bear." - beer has long ee sound, bare is short a, bear is longer a (they all are different)
"Transplant the graph, please." (also new) - yeah, short vs long a.


Personally, I think those of us from the midwest are the ones who speak English properly! If I listen online to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, their pronunciations sound like ours. I know how different accents can be though - our radiator broke in Minnesota - called all around, no one did radiator repairs! Then my uncle walks in - "oh, you mean raaaadiator" rad pronounced as in the measurement for radiation. Called back the same places, all of a sudden they had them! haha.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby cypherspace » Tue Jun 10, 2008 2:55 pm UTC

amysrabbitranch wrote:Personally, I think those of us from the midwest are the ones who speak English properly! If I listen online to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, their pronunciations sound like ours. I know how different accents can be though - our radiator broke in Minnesota - called all around, no one did radiator repairs! Then my uncle walks in - "oh, you mean raaaadiator" rad pronounced as in the measurement for radiation. Called back the same places, all of a sudden they had them! haha.

Well yeah, it's an American publication. You don't think, perhaps, the English might be the ones who speak English "properly"? It being their language and all...

Also... how do you pronounce radiator then? Because, y'know, it's called that because it radiates heat. Like radiation.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby JayDee » Wed Jun 11, 2008 2:15 am UTC

amysrabbitranch wrote:"oh, you mean raaaadiator" rad pronounced as in the measurement for radiation.
I would pronounce 'rad' different to the first syllable of radiation, too.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby steewi » Wed Jun 11, 2008 2:18 am UTC

Interesting. Bencoder's Brighton accent could pass for a cultured Australian accent. When I get my hands on a microphone, I'll record my Aussie accent (although I'm slightly cultured, so it's nowhere near Croc Dundee or Steve Irwin).

The first vowel of radiator, for me, definitely is the same vowel as fade, table and radiation.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Vox Imperatoris » Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:26 am UTC

I'm from Alabama, but I try not to talk with a southern drawl. However, this may just be self-delusion, since people generally can't identify their own accents. (Sorry about the bad stereo effect, I just hacked it together in Audacity.)

ETA: Beastie, you sound just like how I remember my preschool teacher sounding. (In a good way.) She was from England and was responsible for my pronouncing "world" as "weld" for a while, which was pretty funny.
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Alabama_accent.mp3
My accent
(429.82 KiB) Downloaded 362 times
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby eternal luna » Wed Jun 11, 2008 9:04 am UTC

SpitValve wrote:You are an enigma Did you go to an international school or something?
Not at all, I've lived in Sydney my entire life. That being said, my mother has a Russian accent and my father a Bengali one. Not sure if that's affected it any.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby 4=5 » Wed Jun 11, 2008 4:38 pm UTC

cypherspace wrote:
amysrabbitranch wrote:Personally, I think those of us from the midwest are the ones who speak English properly! If I listen online to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, their pronunciations sound like ours. I know how different accents can be though - our radiator broke in Minnesota - called all around, no one did radiator repairs! Then my uncle walks in - "oh, you mean raaaadiator" rad pronounced as in the measurement for radiation. Called back the same places, all of a sudden they had them! haha.

Well yeah, it's an American publication. You don't think, perhaps, the English might be the ones who speak English "properly"? It being their language and all...

Also... how do you pronounce radiator then? Because, y'know, it's called that because it radiates heat. Like radiation.

no they've done really really funky things to it within the last few hundred years

and of course it's pronounced r"A""D""A"ter it's where all the rays radiate from

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby zahlman » Wed Jun 11, 2008 5:32 pm UTC

amysrabbitranch wrote:Personally, I think those of us from the midwest are the ones who speak English properly! If I listen online to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, their pronunciations sound like ours.


Yes, nearly everyone thinks of him/herself / his/her people as the one(s) with no accent. It's likely that the people who did the recordings are simply from your neck of the woods. Alternately, some committee decided that your accent is "representative" of American speech somehow.

I know how different accents can be though - our radiator broke in Minnesota - called all around, no one did radiator repairs! Then my uncle walks in - "oh, you mean raaaadiator" rad pronounced as in the measurement for radiation. Called back the same places, all of a sudden they had them! haha.


Around here, if a difference that minor really caused you problems, you'd at best lose a lot of business, and probably be considered kinda culturally insensitive.

Also, I can think of accent characteristics that are pretty much dead giveaways to distinguish "typical Canadian" from "typical American", which the current list of phrases would completely fail to reveal. (Also, Canadians tend to have a much easier time imitating the American version of these than vice versa. 8) ) Also, "about" is not "distinctive" in Canada in the way that it's commonly thought of (although it does differ from American pronunciation) - unless you're from the Ottawa/Hull region (and possibly other isolated pockets) and not particularly well-to-do.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Mmmm, Pi » Wed Jun 11, 2008 6:11 pm UTC

bencoder wrote:
Mmmm, Pi wrote:That really does sound stilted. By the sound of it you'd be perfectly understandable if you talked normally. Then again, I would have said that about everybody who'd posted their voice here.


You're right, here we go, I redid it:
accents2.mp3

Yep, that sounds a lot more like it should do. Good example of a pretty standard southern accent there really.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby cypherspace » Wed Jun 11, 2008 6:32 pm UTC

JayDee wrote:
amysrabbitranch wrote:"oh, you mean raaaadiator" rad pronounced as in the measurement for radiation.
I would pronounce 'rad' different to the first syllable of radiation, too.

Sure, on its own. But why is rad-iator not pronounced like rad-iation? They have exactly the same origin. They radiate. Ray-dee-ate. Ray-dee-ate-or. Ray-dee-a-shone. It seems very strange to me to pronounce the two syllables differently. Like pronouncing the first syllable of "reading" and "reader" differently.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby beastie » Wed Jun 11, 2008 6:44 pm UTC

Oh, never realised I'd be that hard to understand. The recording might sound a bit awkward as I don't usually talk to myself so much but hey :)

I find the Welsh one few posts above quite accurate! And very different from the Harrow one

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Kizyr » Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:21 pm UTC

beastie wrote:Oh, never realised I'd be that hard to understand. The recording might sound a bit awkward as I don't usually talk to myself so much but hey :)

Hard? I thought your voice was pretty clear. Maybe a little nervous, but that's likely due to the awkwardness of talking to yourself.

Vox Imperatoris wrote:I'm from Alabama, but I try not to talk with a southern drawl. However, this may just be self-delusion, since people generally can't identify their own accents. (Sorry about the bad stereo effect, I just hacked it together in Audacity.)

You definitely have a southern accent, but it's really slight. You can tell mostly from the lead-up before the first sentence. It's not a bad thing of course; it's actually the accent I favor the most, and the one I feel most comfortable speaking in. Only, it tends to come out if I'm tired, and if it gets out too much it starts to sound like I'm mumbling.

Speaking of which, one thing that might be obfuscating the different accents here is the specified script. A lot of regional variation comes from vocabulary that's either specific to or more common in a particular area. Like, "rubbish" for "trash", "rotation" for "taking turns", "y'all" for "oi, you lot", etc.

I wonder if there's some way of coming up with a more non-specific script to get at those differences? It sort of depends on what you want to focus on: the specific pronunciation of letters and words, or that plus the choice of words. KF
Last edited by Kizyr on Thu Jun 12, 2008 1:21 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Mmmm, Pi » Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:40 pm UTC

beastie wrote:Oh, never realised I'd be that hard to understand. The recording might sound a bit awkward as I don't usually talk to myself so much but hey :)

I wouldn't have clocked you as from London, but you are easy enough to understand. I could understand why some of the USAians/Ozzies might have some problems with it though.

For some reason, almost everywhere apart from the UK seems to find my mum's accent very difficult to understand. I have no idea why, because it's pretty much standard Cambridge. It's very weird, esp when everybody can understand me find.
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby beastie » Wed Jun 11, 2008 9:05 pm UTC

I've picked them up from all over the place - boyfriend in Brumland, spending half my time in Manchest-hair and half in B'ham, less with friends from home.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Mmmm, Pi » Wed Jun 11, 2008 9:59 pm UTC

beastie wrote:I've picked them up from all over the place - boyfriend in Brumland, spending half my time in Manchest-hair and half in B'ham, less with friends from home.

My friend's girlfriend is from York and speaks pretty much exactly how you do, and you sound pretty like my Newcastle based sister as well.

Edit: Woo Brumland, even though I've actually seen bugger all of it.
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JayDee
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby JayDee » Thu Jun 12, 2008 6:33 am UTC

cypherspace wrote:Sure, on its own. But why is rad-iator not pronounced like rad-iation? They have exactly the same origin. They radiate. Ray-dee-ate. Ray-dee-ate-or. Ray-dee-a-shone. It seems very strange to me to pronounce the two syllables differently. Like pronouncing the first syllable of "reading" and "reader" differently.
Rad also has that same origin. I honestly couldn't tell you why they pronounce radiator that way in Minnesota, though.
Kizyr wrote:Speaking of which, one thing that might be obfuscating the different accents here is the specified script. A lot of regional variation comes from vocabulary that's either specific to or more common in a particular area. Like, "rubbish" for "trash", "rotation" for "taking turns", "y'all" for "oi, you lot", etc.
That is true, but then you are looking at dialect more than accent. There may be other pronunciation variations that aren't included in the script, but differing words is something else entirely.
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beastie
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby beastie » Thu Jun 12, 2008 8:17 am UTC

Hahah

And to think I'm from nowhere near those places :( I think I'm rubbish at recognising accents that are not prominent in one way or another. And then again it doesn't really make a difference...just a conversation starter in a pub sometimes

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Mr. Mack » Thu Jun 12, 2008 10:34 am UTC

I was thinking about doing this when it occurred to me that the way I speak completely changes depending on whether or not my Adderall is in effect.
For instance, on Adderall I:
    Over-enunciate in order to hide my accent.
    Speak in a more monotone manner.
    Talk in a lower pitch.
    Stop to think about what I'm going to say, and get annoyed if I have to repeat myself.
    Mumble.

Whereas when it's just me in all my brilliant ADHD glory:
    I make no attempts to hide my accent, I also adopt other accents for the duration of a single sentence (or less). A large portion of anything I say is delivered ironically.
    I corrupt words on purpose. Specifically, I'll skip and add letters in order to make words easier to say. I'll also make up words just for the fun of it, or mispronounce words for no reason.
    I vary my pitch greatly for emphasis or comedic effect.
    I'll occasionally repeat a word two or three times. Sometimes, I'll repeat an entire sentence, but with the words re-arranged. (kind of unhelpful, but it's too weird to ignore)
    I don't mumble, but sometimes I'll say the word "mumble" three times quickly and quietly.(also unhelpful, but it has a sibling in the previous list)

If I find my mic and get over feeling weird about talking to my computer, should I record naturally* or sedated? Of course, there's already two submissions from the Southern US, so maybe I wouldn't add enough to justify the recording?
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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby SpitValve » Thu Jun 12, 2008 2:42 pm UTC

^ You could record both and compare them if you want.

zahlman wrote:Also, "about" is not "distinctive" in Canada in the way that it's commonly thought of (although it does differ from American pronunciation) - unless you're from the Ottawa/Hull region (and possibly other isolated pockets) and not particularly well-to-do.


D'y'reckon? I mean, I'm living in Canada and I notice it all the time. The Nova Scotians have it quite strong, and my PEI flatmate does it too. My friends from Toronto don't think they do it, but it's still clearly Canadian - just not as strong. Some people clearly say "aboat", but it seems that everybody here does a slightly different diphthong than what is more common abroad. It seriously does sound like people are talking about a "coach" when they say "couch" sometimes. If you record your accent we can judge for ourselves :)

Also, some Canadians say "aunt" the English way (i.e. not "ant").

But mostly the reason why there's not that much there to distinguish between American and Canadian accents is because they actually pronounce things pretty similarly most of the time :) but if you have some good examples, I could add them to the list.

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Re: Recordings of Your Accent/Oral survey

Postby Kizyr » Thu Jun 12, 2008 6:15 pm UTC

JayDee wrote:
Kizyr wrote:Speaking of which, one thing that might be obfuscating the different accents here is the specified script. A lot of regional variation comes from vocabulary that's either specific to or more common in a particular area. Like, "rubbish" for "trash", "rotation" for "taking turns", "y'all" for "oi, you lot", etc.
That is true, but then you are looking at dialect more than accent. There may be other pronunciation variations that aren't included in the script, but differing words is something else entirely.

Oh, very true. I wasn't thinking about that distinction; you're right.

Although, I think having a script might still be hiding some aspects of the accent (now, I mean accent specifically and not dialect) that might otherwise be more apparent if you were to just hear dialogue that was more 'natural'. The obvious problem, then, is that there's not much of a basis for comparison.

Hm... one way, while not really perfect, would be to have one person say something more akin to natural speech in their own dialect+accent, and others try to repeat the same words in their own accent. And then the process repeat with the next person. ...not really sure what you might get out of that, however; just thinking out loud here. KF
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