What sort of spelling could be user frendly
for everyone -
readers, writers, learners and internationaly?
The future for English
The time is ripe to bring it up to date
The present time of unfetterd public experiment on the Internet is
the greatest oportunity for internationl testing and introduction of
a more consistent and simpl English spelling system. It may not last
if the freedom becomes fetterd, so make the most of it now.
No drastic initial transition.
Transition is a bridging period of public acceptance of more
alternativ spellings with the sevral thousand alredy acceptd in
dictionries. It can include Faster Spelling used as an initial
lerning spelling for present spelling. Alternativ solutions to
problems can be tested and improved in the popular arena. Bad
Spelling' on the Net shows trends and problems that spelling
improvers can take into account. Because it is a clean-up of existing
spelling, features of Faster Spelling can be pickd up at difrent
rates for popular personl, Internet, email, film and TV subtitling,
and comercial uses. At first there wil be inconsistencies and lapses,
as demonstrated in this articl. Features can be masterd a few at a
time in coming to understand the total system.
SurplusCut Spelling can be taken up first for popular use
and then be acceptd in schools - a common sequence for inovations in
A list of the 100 worst Spelling Demons with alternativ Faster
Spellings can introduce Faster Spelling for popular use.
An Internationl English organisation is needed to monitor
and evaluate developments and to supervise oficial implementation of
outcomes, both acompanying and following this extensiv practicl
trialing and testing.
Spelling reformrs who hav gon strait for pure and sweeping
sound-symbol correspondence may seek drastic changes to be imposed by
fiat and schools, but sweeping changes in other cuntries hav required
dictatorships and/or an iliterat majority. Most successful Western
spelling reforms as in the Netherlands and Germany hav been updatings
used imediatly in the marketplace.
'What the market wil bear'
Decisions on this are mor art than sience. How far
reform can go varies with audience. Observation shows that when
most peple read print that they want to read or must read, they
take litl or no notice of SurplusCut changes that are not
disruptiv. Aclimatisation is most posibl thru exposure to text
that hey are sure to read, as in TV subtitles. When there is no
motiv to make peple want to read something, they make decisions
whether to read on from first sampling the text. Obtrusiv spelling
changes can be the deciding factor against reading furthr. For
that reason, this Personal Vew has used miniml Surplus-Cut
spelling, with most changes located towards the endings of words
and sentences - that is, what reserch so far indicates most people
can tolerate or not even notice. If the concept of spelling
simplifcation this way then interests readers, they are free to
explor it themselvs and to take it as far as they like, as in
personl writing like letrs, and where concise text is an advantaj,
as in hedings and labels (hedngs and làbls).
Transfer to Faster Spelling in print and electronic
Today it is a simpl matr to customise spellings for house-styls,
spel-chekrs and computer-printing for new and reprintd publications.
Most of SurplusCut and Faster Spelling can be produced from surplus
spelling by algorithms.
Gimiks and gajets to popularise reform
- The authr's 1971 'Poket Gide
to Instant Spelling' was a small card to be carried in
the poket, to help poor spelrs and othrs to use consistent
'sensibl spelling'. Now the Internet could dispense its own Poket
Gide, revised as public testing indicated. At first there might be
as many gides put up as there are spelling reformrs, but th test
of public aproval and use would eventualy sort them out. A redily
updatabl Gide to Principls of Spelling could become the preferrd
dictionry for the Web.
- International Spelling Day
on October 9 to coincide with Korea's Great Spelling
- Spelling Games for media puzl pages
and schools, Spelling Calendars and greetings cards,
scrabl as a way to play Scrabble, a Design-your-own-Spelling
computer game, reformd spelling trialed in film and TV
- Design your own English spelling
system' is also a useful school and puzl-page exercise
to understand the English spelling system. All oponents of
spelling reform can be askd to try this.
- Reformd spelling as pronunciation
keys in dictionaries, and set in facing pages as cribs
to help lernrs read pajes in present spelling.
Further developments can include:
Improved letrs and numbrs for easy lerning and
ii) Replace keybord caractrs Q and X
with new vowel letrs. C
might be used for /tsh/ as in Indonesian. But re-using
obsolete caractrs would confuse internationly as wel as in
compatibility with present spelling.
iii). Gramr and language changes
to help to promote English as the world's internationl
language, and reduce the burdn on children to lern its
irregularities, e.g. with reduction of irregular verbs such as
BRING/BRINGD TEACH/ TEACHD.
In the future - a breakthru to a
writing system that can cross languages, like Chinese
but without its dificulties; as breakthrus revolutionise other
comunications tecnology. Until then, reform requires compatibility
with international English spelling as it is at present, and its
heritage of print, just as developments in comunications tecnology
must be backwards compatibl for a period.
The prime criteria for spelling reform are imediat usefulness and
future potential. Faster Spelling deservs attention, investigation
and research on all these grounds.
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