Singapore English or Singlish

An editorial in the Straits Times today slams Singaporeans, particularly those from the younger generation, who cling to the view that there’s no need for them to improve their English.

In blogs, Twitters, SMSes, Facebook and forums in cyberspace the bad English used by Singaporeans makes you wince.

Since Singapore is one of the few countries in Asia where English is the medium of instruction a much higher standard of spoken and written English is justifiably expected.

If Singaporeans want to be universally understood it’s imperative they speak and write standard English. We are no longer living in a kampung or village but in the age of the internet where with a click we can be connected to someone thousands of kilometers away.

All that Twitters is not good English avers the Straits Times.

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4 Responses to “Singapore English or Singlish”

  1. Even Singaporeans who are interviewed on television cannot express themselves in simple standard English. Why?

  2. My theory is that they are so used to speaking Singlish that it’s affected their ability to speak standard English.

  3. I think it has to do with the host also. Maybe they see Mediacorp or CNA, chin chye la. If they are interviewed by BBC or CNN foreign correspondent, they will try not to speak Singlish.

  4. You have a point there. Foreigners may think Singlish is our national language as it’s the lingua franca of Singaporeans.


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