That there is a primo example of a headline that’s not very accurate. The article specifically discusses the English spoken in London, England. The native English are apparently being replaced by non-natives, with the result that:
Already Estuary English – a hybrid of Cockney and received pronunciation (RP) which is prevalent in the South East – is being replaced by Multicultural London English (MLE) which is heavily influenced by Caribbean, West African and Asian Communities.
The conclusion being drawn is that the English language of London will become a dumbed-down, linguistically simplified gibberish with fewer consonants because the speakers won’t be able to distinguish between ’em. I gather that it will sound like a combination of “ghetto” and the “chav/yob/pikey/whatever-the-hell-they’re-called” indecipherable mush that you can hear in the movies “Attack the Block ” and “Harry Brown.”
Interestingly, we’re living in a time when English *should* be able to remain stable. Centuries ago it’d change because, well, languages drift. But we now have more than a century of audio recording s of *proper* English, widespread literacy and ready access to decent educations. But it seems that English is mutating faster than ever. Some of it is good and natural… the more words for the more concepts, the better. As James Nicoll pointed out:
The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don’t just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and riffle their pockets for new vocabulary.
But dumbing it down? I believe George Orwell wrote a book a little while back about efforts to dumb down English into “Newspeak.” If you limit a persons ability to communicate, you limit their ability to conceptualize. You limit their horizons.
And people said I was mad when I decided to base the late 21st century of Earth in my Zaneverse stories on a combination of “Idiocracy” and “Elysium.”