Words you choose to mispronounce

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby ZLVT » Mon Nov 21, 2011 10:18 am UTC

I appreciate the difference between broad and narrow, and also in the range of dialects in English, however this doesn't explain why they use characters, which even in their loose interpretations don't exist in English and why they would use pairs of symbols which relative to each other are the reverse of the sounds they represent.

I have no beef with the english <r> being represented as <ɹ> and not <r> in true IPA. I've always viewed a trilled or tapped r as the default value for that letter (it being a likely pronunciation by the romans who invented the script), but using the trilled symbol <r> for the [ɹ] phone(me) is just bad form. Granted, there is some degree of variation among the r phonemes of English, and in each dialect there is officially only 1, meaning this is one convention which, while wrong, is probably completely unambiguious in context, but it's still a bad idea to use such major substitutions for sounds. Especially when dialects like mine DO make use of [ɾ] (often for intervocallic t or d), it would make the jump from broad to narrow more confusing when you started off with <r> in broad and wound up with <ɹ> and <ɾ> in narrow.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Derek » Mon Nov 21, 2011 11:18 am UTC

ZLVT wrote:It's also wrong. Wikipedia's IPA standard for english uses conventions which are weird. [r] doesn't exist in the vast majority of English dialects, same with final (and in some cases intitial) [l]. The use of [u:] for the oo sound was even worse as that's closer to [ʉʊ]. [eɪ] is another pet peeve. To me at least, it's obvious that the bay sound starts off more open than the bet sound, so why transcribe it with a vowel that's more closed, and [oʊ] go similarly begins on a more open central vowel than [o] (which even wiki recognises, like [e], is not an English sound)

/r/ for /ɹ/ is largely a matter of typing convenience, since /r/ never otherwise appears in English (/r/ is actually pronounced as [r] in Scottish English though, and likely in Old/Middle English).

/l/ is used to cover for both [l] and [ɫ] because the two are allophones/dialectical variations. [l] is generally considered the "standard" form of the allophone, so it's used for the phoneme (and it's also easier to type).

/u:/ again because of dialectical variation, I'm pretty sure [u:] was the actual pronunciation in fairly recent (less than 100 years? I may be pulling this number out of my ass.) historical accents. Many accents still use [u:]

/eɪ/ same as above. In my accent I perceive the first sound as closer to [e] than [ɛ].

/oʊ/ same as above. Again, in my accent (and most/all American accents, I think), [o] is accurate.

If the motivation for using innacurate symbols is ease of typing, they should use [o] for aural, and [əʊ] for go, since o is easy to type and ə is pretty important in English transcription.

Except that [ɔ] is quite different from [o], and both are used for very different sounds in English transcriptions into IPA. In fact, [o] is much closer to [oʊ] than [ɔ], so it would be confusing to write /o/ for [ɔ].


You seem to be trying to wanting the phonemic transcriptions to favor your own accent. Of course, transcriptions will always tend to favor the accent of the transcriber, so an American will probably write /oʊ/ where a Brit would write /əʊ/, but the more you favor one accent, the more confusing it gets for readers of other accents. On the other hand, there is generally no desire to avoid confusing non-native speakers (unless they are being specifically targeted for some reason). So people generally agree on standard representations for phonemic transcriptions that are somewhat arbitrary, but try to act as a compromise between the many different accents.

You also seem to think that just because a vowel doesn't occur as a monophthong, it can't occur in a diphthong ("[o]...like [e], is not an English sound"). This is just not true.

yurell wrote:annoyed at people in the video pronouncing things objectively wrong (blasted rhotic accents!),

I actually did find a lot of things in that video objectively wrong, regardless of accent:
-Using "what" as an example of /w/ and "when" as an example of /ʍ/, while pronouncing them both as /w/. This is wrong not only because he failed to correctly pronounce /ʍ/, but also because if /ʍ/ exists in an accent, that accent will almost certainly use it for both "what" and "when" (note that they both are spelled with a "wh").
-Syllabic nasals were included separately, but the examples that were used ("when" and "umbrella") are definitely non-syllabic.
-Likewise, syllabic /l/ was included, but the example was "really".
-Both aspirated and unaspirated stops were included. "Park" was given as an example for [kh], which seemed odd but I can except it. But then "like" was given as an example for [k].
-This is the least significant gripe, but "your" was given as the example for syllabic /r/. Again, I would normally be okay with this if that's how he pronounced it, but then he goes and pronounces "your" as /jɔːɹ/. He seems to think that "syllabic" means "in the coda" (although even that isn't true for "really").

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Ideas sleep furiously. » Tue Nov 22, 2011 1:31 pm UTC

Cashe, I pronounce like you would pronounce cafe, as opposed to 'kash'.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby ZLVT » Tue Nov 22, 2011 3:28 pm UTC

you mean cache? And yes I do that too. Though less since I found out about the proper pronunciation.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby yurell » Tue Nov 22, 2011 11:29 pm UTC

I don't know if I'm using the right symbols, but I've only ever heard it pronounced /keɪʃ/ (hard 'k', the '-ay' sound from 'bay' and then the standard 'sh' sound) when referring to computers, and like the word 'cash' when not.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Euler » Tue Nov 22, 2011 11:44 pm UTC

^ +1
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby skullturf » Wed Nov 23, 2011 12:00 am UTC

Interesting. I'm pretty sure I've never heard "cache" pronounced with the "bay" vowel in any context. I'm only aware of ever hearing the "cash" pronunciation.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Lazar » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:45 am UTC

Likewise - until now I didn't know that anyone pronounced "cache" differently from "cash".
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Derek » Wed Nov 23, 2011 1:54 am UTC

I've heard /kæʃ/ and /kæʃeɪ/, but never /keɪʃ/.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Anonymously Famous » Wed Nov 23, 2011 2:42 pm UTC

I think I've heard it pronounced the same as "catch" sometimes...

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby gmalivuk » Wed Nov 23, 2011 4:16 pm UTC

yurell wrote:I don't know if I'm using the right symbols, but I've only ever heard it pronounced /keɪʃ/ (hard 'k', the '-ay' sound from 'bay' and then the standard 'sh' sound) when referring to computers, and like the word 'cash' when not.
Yeah, I likewise have never heard it pronounced that way, nor ever seen a dictionary with that pronunciation listed.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby yurell » Wed Nov 23, 2011 9:13 pm UTC

Must be a regional thing then.
cemper93 wrote:Dude, I just presented an elaborate multiple fraction in Comic Sans. Who are you to question me?


Pronouns: Feminine pronouns please!

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby ZLVT » Fri Nov 25, 2011 3:37 am UTC

While we're on the topic, does anyone pronounce the n in government normally? [gʌvn̩mn̩t] vs [gʌvəmn̩t]
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby PM 2Ring » Fri Nov 25, 2011 4:05 am UTC

ZLVT wrote:While we're on the topic, does anyone pronounce the n in government normally? [gʌvn̩mn̩t] vs [gʌvəmn̩t]

Certainly.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Astrognash » Fri Nov 25, 2011 9:10 pm UTC

I always pronounce Connecticut as "Cə-neck-tə-cut".
I also tend to pronounce "syrup" as "sərp" instead of "sear-up". This is done solely to annoy my mom, who is from Pennsylvania and hates the way all those around us (us being in North Carolina) pronounce syrup.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby raike » Fri Nov 25, 2011 11:41 pm UTC

I tend to pronounce 'biology' as ['bi:ɑləd͡ʒi] (bee-aw-luh-ji, in case my IPA is completely wrong). I'm not quite sure why I do this, and I get odd looks whenever I say it this way.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Iulus Cofield » Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:25 am UTC

I pronounce it that way and so does the fellow standing next to me. What's the preferred pronunciation in your region?

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby UniqueScreenname » Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:26 am UTC

My friend and I played this as a game once until it started making me physically ill, since I actually am sort of a grammar freak. The best ones were jeopardy pronounced "gee-o-pardy," Juan pronounced "Jew-an," and telephone pronounced "tee-lee-puh-ho-nee." That last one was what made me so sick.

It absolutely kills me when people pronounce pronunciation wrong. That's the one that people will do around me just to annoy me. My friend will also say cacophony "ca-co-fo-nee."

The only one I say wrong in daily conversation is Wednesday (Wed-nes-day). That's how I learned how to spell it when I was little, so that's how I still say it.
Last edited by UniqueScreenname on Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:36 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby yurell » Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:33 am UTC

Iulus Cofield wrote:I pronounce it that way and so does the fellow standing next to me. What's the preferred pronunciation in your region?


Over here we go for /baɪˈɒlədʒi/ (bye-oll-oh-jee)
cemper93 wrote:Dude, I just presented an elaborate multiple fraction in Comic Sans. Who are you to question me?


Pronouns: Feminine pronouns please!

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Iulus Cofield » Sat Nov 26, 2011 12:34 am UTC

Oh derp. I was reading /bi:/ as /baɪ/ for some reason.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby raike » Sat Nov 26, 2011 2:55 am UTC

yurell wrote:
Iulus Cofield wrote:I pronounce it that way and so does the fellow standing next to me. What's the preferred pronunciation in your region?


Over here we go for /baɪˈɒlədʒi/ (bye-oll-oh-jee)


What he she said ;).
Last edited by raike on Sat Nov 26, 2011 3:19 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby yurell » Sat Nov 26, 2011 3:03 am UTC

There's another ... over here we pronounce it 'she' :wink:
cemper93 wrote:Dude, I just presented an elaborate multiple fraction in Comic Sans. Who are you to question me?


Pronouns: Feminine pronouns please!

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby raike » Sat Nov 26, 2011 3:19 am UTC

yurell wrote:There's another ... over here we pronounce it 'she' :wink:


:oops: Corrected now - sorry!
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby eaglewings51 » Fri Dec 02, 2011 8:38 am UTC

I pronounce a lot of Spanish words correctly while most people don't so I guess that could be considered mis-pronounced since I usually get weird looks. It's usually country names and city names like Bogota, Ecuador, Peru, Chile, Argentina, and Guatemala. It's very similar to how Americans pronounce them but slightly different with accents in different places or slightly different pronunciation of certain vowels or letters.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Anonymously Famous » Fri Dec 02, 2011 2:43 pm UTC

I do the same thing. There's a street a few blocks away called "Calle Principal." Most of the people here call it "Cally Principal," while I pronounce it in Spanish. I'll repeat myself using the local pronunciation if I'm not understood, though.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Kick » Fri Dec 02, 2011 3:24 pm UTC

UniqueScreenname wrote:The only one I say wrong in daily conversation is Wednesday (Wed-nes-day). That's how I learned how to spell it when I was little, so that's how I still say it.

I, too, say Wednesday like that.

I learned a lot of these slightly-off pronunciations from my father though, and sometimes I'll randomly say words like "controversy" with the emphasis on the -oversy part as seems more common in the UK (and more recently, due to watching a lot of the older seasons of Top Gear (UK) I've begun calling coupe's "coop-ays").
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Oflick » Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:21 am UTC

Kick wrote:
UniqueScreenname wrote:The only one I say wrong in daily conversation is Wednesday (Wed-nes-day). That's how I learned how to spell it when I was little, so that's how I still say it.

I, too, say Wednesday like that.

I learned a lot of these slightly-off pronunciations from my father though, and sometimes I'll randomly say words like "controversy" with the emphasis on the -oversy part as seems more common in the UK (and more recently, due to watching a lot of the older seasons of Top Gear (UK) I've begun calling coupe's "coop-ays").


I'll apologise it advance before I ask a question without IPA, but how are you meant to pronounce Controversy? Is it "Con-tro-versy" (the way I say it), or "Con-trov-ersy"? Are both acceptable? Are both wrong even?

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Kick » Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:47 am UTC

Oflick wrote:
Kick wrote:
UniqueScreenname wrote:The only one I say wrong in daily conversation is Wednesday (Wed-nes-day). That's how I learned how to spell it when I was little, so that's how I still say it.

I, too, say Wednesday like that.

I learned a lot of these slightly-off pronunciations from my father though, and sometimes I'll randomly say words like "controversy" with the emphasis on the -oversy part as seems more common in the UK (and more recently, due to watching a lot of the older seasons of Top Gear (UK) I've begun calling coupe's "coop-ays").


I'll apologise it advance before I ask a question without IPA, but how are you meant to pronounce Controversy? Is it "Con-tro-versy" (the way I say it), or "Con-trov-ersy"? Are both acceptable? Are both wrong even?

I am not familiar with IPA, but I was simply mentioning that I sometimes catch myself placing the emphasis in a different place than others in my area do (probably from watching a lot of British shows on Netflix). I attempted to write the different pronunciations that I've heard, but as I do not know or understand IPA, I felt that it would have been in vain and made me look like an idiot (I was trying to use bold and brackets...it was not pretty).

Maybe someone more well versed with IPA can lend us a hand. How does one pronounce "controversy"?

EDIT: Google is my very best friend. (Recording of the two different pronunciations of which I was referring.)
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:38 pm UTC

Oflick wrote:I'll apologise it advance before I ask a question without IPA, but how are you meant to pronounce Controversy? Is it "Con-tro-versy" (the way I say it), or "Con-trov-ersy"? Are both acceptable? Are both wrong even?
If you're not going to use IPA or even SAMPA, please at least capitalize the syllable you stress. As you have it now I don't know what's different between those two pronunciations.

I will say, though, that American English tends to stress the first syllable of controversy, while British English stresses the second.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Oflick » Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:44 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
Oflick wrote:I'll apologise it advance before I ask a question without IPA, but how are you meant to pronounce Controversy? Is it "Con-tro-versy" (the way I say it), or "Con-trov-ersy"? Are both acceptable? Are both wrong even?
If you're not going to use IPA or even SAMPA, please at least capitalize the syllable you stress. As you have it now I don't know what's different between those two pronunciations.

I will say, though, that American English tends to stress the first syllable of controversy, while British English stresses the second.


Sorry, how about this: "CON-tro-versy" or "Con-TROV-ersy". If that still doesn't help, don't worry about it.
Last edited by Oflick on Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:24 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby skullturf » Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:17 pm UTC

I think you meant "CON-tro-versy" vs "con-TROV-ersy".

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Oflick » Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:23 pm UTC

skullturf wrote:I think you meant "CON-tro-versy" vs "con-TROV-ersy".


You're right, I clearly wasn't thinking. Edited my post.

I'm learning IPA, will solve all these problems (maybe).

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Fire Brns » Thu Dec 08, 2011 3:33 pm UTC

trough (trow)
opossum (oppossum)

any instance of "u" being pronounced with a y, ex: The oonited States.

few more fun ones, can't remember.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Derek » Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:57 pm UTC

Fire Brns wrote:opossum (oppossum)

What's the difference here?

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby gmalivuk » Thu Dec 08, 2011 8:38 pm UTC

Whether or not to pronounce the initial "o".
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Fire Brns » Fri Dec 09, 2011 3:19 pm UTC

yes, I like to switch up articles so any instance that lets me use "an" instead of "a", I take advantage of.
For the oo unstead of u, think about it, the y is only there because of illiterate old timey people: "thee oonited" sounds to a passerby as "the younited".

"Wed-nes-day" on the previous page; I do that and expanded that to include tu-es-day or twez-day.
Last edited by Fire Brns on Mon Dec 12, 2011 8:21 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Dec 09, 2011 4:10 pm UTC

Fire Brns wrote:the y is only there because of illiterate olt timey people
[citation needed]
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby Derek » Fri Dec 09, 2011 6:32 pm UTC

Fire Brns wrote:For the oo unstead of u, think about it, the y is only there because of illiterate olt timey people: "thee oonited" sounds to a passerby as "the younited".

Not sure if serious, but actually the y is there because of the great vowel shift that turned /u:/ ("oo") into /ju:/ ("you").

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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby gmalivuk » Fri Dec 09, 2011 6:38 pm UTC

And of course evidence for this lies in the fact that we don't add [j] to the beginning of any of the other vowels that also cause a slight [j] to stick to the end of "the", such as "the apple" and "the orange" and "the onion". In addition, the "illiterate old-timers" explanation fails to account for all (or any) of the instances where [u] is preceded by [j] within a word instead of at the beginning.
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Re: Words you choose to mispronounce

Postby yurell » Sat Dec 10, 2011 12:19 am UTC

Derek wrote:
Fire Brns wrote:For the oo unstead of u, think about it, the y is only there because of illiterate olt timey people: "thee oonited" sounds to a passerby as "the younited".

Not sure if serious, but actually the y is there because of the great vowel shift that turned /u:/ ("oo") into /ju:/ ("you").


It feels odd when I hear someone use /u:/ instead of /ju:/ in a lot of words (like in YouTube, although hearing it pronounced with /t/ also throws me off, since I'm used to it being /tʃ/).
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Pronouns: Feminine pronouns please!


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