Sunday, September 03, 2006

The sad truth about cow dialects

Well, the big glacier of publicity on 'cow dialects' in the UK (here's the CNN version) has melted away faster than real glaciers are going today.

Linguists had to figure something was wrong when they quoted renowned phonetician John Wells as endorsing the idea. The good folks at Language Log (actually, Mark Liberman, in this case) call attention to what really happened ... sounds like some remarkably bad journalism.

What a shame that it's not true. The just-started Wisconsin Englishes project could surely have landed some grants to pursue non-human linguistic variation in America's Dairy State.

No comments: