2008/7/13  <[log in to unmask]>:
>> [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of MacLeod Dave
>> > What you see happening linguistically is the laws of natural
>> > selection in action linguistically.  As the environment
> changes
>> > to favor a certain language, it will gain popularity.
> Certain
>> > locals languages may have some favor locally, but there is
> also
>> > an overriding trend toward globalization which is spreading
>> > English.  Therefore it is possible for English to grow along
>> > with certain local languages, but eventually there will come
> a
>> > time when the global language starts gaining favor over the
>> > local language.  It's really the same thing that has already
>> > happened during colonialization.  The indigenous languages
> of
>> > North America have been virtually wiped out.
>> I'm talking about languages with countries backing them
> though.
>> Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, all those. Tiny languages with
> no
>> official backing are of course probably going to die out.
> Large
>> languages are in no danger whatsoever though from a Euroclone
> IAL.
> No immediate dangers, but withing a few centuries they could be
> extinct or near extinction.  Those "countries" as we know them
> today could become little more than "administrative zones"
> belonging to some future world government.  By this time, people
> are relatively free to travel and relocate to other parts of the
> world.  The global language being very important to daily life
> for these mixed populations, the local languages become
> increasingly deprecated.  I'm sure the major languages you
> mention will be the ones to survive for a long time, and
> ultimately even contribute a lot to the the global variety of
> English.

Once again, total conjecture. If this theory were correct languages
like Estonian, Lithuanian, Hebrew, Welsh, and all the rest should be
on death's door now. It's also based on the idea that there is a kind
of concrete barrier between languages, that people learn one and then
suddenly stop learning them. A situation in which _everybody_ knows a
language and an IAL results in a much more language-friendly world
population, and I've shown the numbers where those who have learned
one language naturally start absorbing others.

>> Not going to happen. What actually happens is that small
> countries
>> with educated populations are most affected by this (Singapore
> for
>> example), and they go along with these trends. Countries with
> larger
>> populations like Japan and Korea though have a bubble of
> comfort in
>> which it doesn't matter what language is being used on the
> outside.
>> The Korean government is very keen on making its citizens
> proficient
>> in English, but what you really see here now is that most
> people don't
>> care enough to learn it; they're very comfortable doing what
> they're
>> doing and only those that actually have to deal with English
> people
>> want to learn the language. Most people would love to know
> English,
>> but there's no thirst for it. It's just something that would
> be nice
>> to have.
> Japan and Korea do have their *current* comfort zone.  The
> English skills in these area may be weak, but over a long period
> of time, as they becoming increasingly bombarded with
> English-language media and pop culture this will change.

No, it's the opposite. Korea didn't have a comfort zone for quite a
while and it looked like they were going to make English the official
language for a while in the late 90s and early 21st century, but
_after_ absorbing more western influence, culture and technology
they've found a comfort zone where the average person doesn't need

>> Now multiply that by five for Japan. Spanish probably even
> more so.
>> The cannibalistic language theory doesn't take into account
> what
>> happens when people reach a certain level of economic comfort.
> Comfort or not, what happens when there's massive cross
> migration of people?  We're already starting to see the world's
> major cities becoming small melting pots.  It's these melting
> pots that will have the greatest need for some type of lingua
> franca.  What's going to happen when Tokyo or Seoul become
> flooded with immigrants from a variety of different places?
> None of them speak Japanese, but all of them having picked up
> some English in school.

The ones that live long enough pick up Japanese and Korean because of
the advantage it offers in everyday life. The ones that don't
eventually leave because they don't like it.