This post contains a selection of links related to language and words in the news. These can be items from the latest news, blog posts or interesting websites related to global English, language change, education in general, and language learning and teaching in particular.
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On Tony Blair’s ‘look’
David Crystal on the use of ‘look…’ or ‘well look…’ by politicians.
Mullered and 61 other words for beaten at sport
With England crashing out of the World Cup, lexicographer Jonathon Green helpfully comes up with a myriad ways of saying ‘defeat’.
The Man Behind the Dialect Quiz
Just before the end of 2013 the New York Times published a quiz designed to pinpoint the quiz taker’s exact region of origin. Here’s an interview with the linguist who designed it.
Are employers really worried about Britain’s language skills?
Does it matter that Brits are so bad at languages other than English?
Why You’re Not Fluent Yet – And What To Do About It
And if it does, here are some ideas that might help remedy the situation.
Why everyone is stealing your stuff
Since the day the first photocopier was delivered to a private language school, ELT materials have been widely and very openly pirated.
Books, science, dictionaries, words and language
As I Walked Out One Midsummer Morning
Yesterday would have been the 100th birthday of the Gloucestershire-born author Laurie Lee. Fellow walker Robert Macfarlane offers an appreciation of Lee’s account of walking through Spain on the eve of the Spanish civil war.
A Midsummer Night’s Sweven
With Midsummer’s Day just behind us, Wordlady Katherine Barber considers the etymology of dream.
How to Write 225 Words Per Minute With a Pen
Journalist Dennis Hollier explains how he combines the newest technology with traditional shorthand.
What language does soccer speak?
Audiences around the world often struggle to find World Cup commentary in their native tongue.
What makes a word “real”?
Who decides which words go into dictionaries? And how? This entertaining TED talk by Anne Curzan sheds some light.