Discuss the positive and negative impacts of having English as global language
Over the last decades English has played an important role around the world as common language for economic, education, scientific and entertainment exchange between nations and in particular between people. The positive aspect is that English language open doors in terms of global communication and business, because this language has become a powerful tool in terms of improving productivity and driving growth where it is used . However, there are also a number of significant negative aspects such as English dominance and loss of languages mainly driven by globalization. Therefore, this essay will argue the negative impacts of having English as a global language because of the way English language affects young people’s linguistic skills and behaviour through mass media.
Using English as an international language has some benefits in people’s lives. Firstly, the major positive effect is global communication due to the widespread coverage recognized and understood by people everywhere. One example of how English has helped to improve communication in the world is given by Crystal (2002) English language was implemented in aviation field after the second world war, when the International Aviation Organisation agreed with the objective of traffic control safety. This is important because having one common worldwide language is in a very real sense the final safety net. Additionally, English is the widespread language in education due to the great influence of English in several fields, where communication is the key in order to improve development and knowledge (Weil and Pullin 2011).
In fact, today this language is used to normal medium instruction in higher education for many countries, including several where the language has no official status. What is more, it is that English has had positive impact in business because it is an important tool in terms of driving growth and international development. There are some significant examples in multinational corporations such as Siemens which is the largest electricalengineering companies in the world located in Germany. Since 2002 the corporate language is English (Fredricksson, Barner-Rasmussen & Piekkari 2006). It is clear that companies use English not only for productivity but also for integrating people at work. Allied to this another case is in Deutsche Bank which implemented English as a common language for meetings, in order to achieve efficiency (Rogerson-Revel 2006). It can be seen then that English language has positive effects in people’s lives not only in everyday life but also in specific fields such as aviation, education and business.
However, if one looks closely to the situation of minority languages there are a number of negative aspects of having English as a worldwide tongue. One of these is English dominance. Actually, language plays an important role in terms of influencing people’s behaviour through mass media such as movies, satellite TV and DVDs which can be viewed almost universally, examples of this such as Hollywood Films, TV Series and CNN news (Morris 2002). The effect of mass media does not stop when the movie or program ends. This lingering effect might just be the cause of behavioural changes in people.
Another example of the English media dominance is given by Kaul (2011) who argues that most language’s scholars think that the television companies especially from the US have created a variety of programs such as Bloomberg, MTV music television and National Geographic in order to cover different audiences and as a result influences on people’s thinking. It is clear that English has negative consequences on people through mass media communications due to the influence on their mentality. Language loss is another negative effect of English as global language. Actually, according to Whalen (cited by Gibbs 2002), in the United Kingdom there is some dialect Irish Gaelic, where people started seeing their language as inferior to the dominant language, then people ceased speaking it for everyday life.
Thus, if their children stopped speaking their own language as a result the language inevitable will vanish. Another case related to this issue is in the United States where some languages are into extinction such as Shoshone which is the language of native indigenous community, this tongue has been taught for generations carrying the identity of their people. However, due to the pressure of English language and American culture, Shoshone will extinct inevitably (Krauss 2003). This is because Shoshone speakers have been influenced inevitably by American society. It can be seen that, there are significant examples of languages loss this issue is driven by English as worldwide language.
Therefore, although English as a global language can have some positive effects in fields such as education aviation and business communication arguably has more adverse effects. Young people have been facing serious problems in their linguistic identity due to English media influences . This aspect continually changes with the individual development, according to the environment and situations in daily life, where English is a powerful tool of communication. One example of this case is given by Kaul (2011) who states that global western brands such as Disney, well known in terms of influencing children’s behaviour through communication and shopping experience. This means that, The US export western perception of entertainment to the children under its consumer strategy with significant consequences in their lives.
Another example of English Media dominance in young people is in television such as cartoon network programs which have become a negative influence in terms of linguistic expressions (Hassan & Daniyal 2013). It is clear that, English language through mass media is affecting negatively behaviour and linguistic skills in young people. Another aspect that it is important to take into account is linguistic Culture loss. A recent study of a group of undergraduate students in selected private and public universities from Malaysia, found that being proficient in English is viewed as superior, higher status and elite social interaction than the local language. (Kim, Siong, Fei & Ya’acob 2010). The implication here is the detriment of the mother tongue and as a result the linguistic culture.
According to Keebe (2003) regarding indigenous linguistic loss is not only an issue in terms of linguistic concern but also in terms of preserving culture. It is clear that, as global language English is responsible for some damages in linguistic culture in some communities. This situation causes that minorities gradually move the language from the mother tongue to the foreign language with consequences in terms of culture identity. It can be seen then that there are some significant evidences to show that English language as a worldwide tongue can have negative effects in minority communities such as language loss and rejection of their own language.
Although, some argue that English as a common language may facilitate global communication, there are significant negative impacts in terms of misunderstandings between people. One of these is the pronunciation due to the different English accents around the world. There are some examples in aviation field one example of this was between members of the crew and a passenger in Air New Zealand flight, from London to Oakland, California where a young man passenger understood Oakland instead of Auckland. Therefore, was taken to Auckland, next day New Zealand airlines gave him a free-ticket to Oakland (Krivonos 2007). This example shows that misunderstanding can occur in any part of the flight whether landing or taking off stage.
Moreover, there are examples in terms of communication where English as a global language has changed its vocabulary due to the adaptations in different countries depending on the communicative needs such as words associated to traditions, rituals, cooking, recreation, habits, and many other aspects of daily life. For instance, in South Africa the expression ‘The bakkie had to stop at a red robot’ , people need to understand that the word bakkie means a truck and the word robot means traffic light (Crystal 2003). This means that English as a common language is exposed to several changes due to the language itself now belong to the world.
Moreover, while some authors claim that English as a worldwide language has positive impacts in terms of business WorldLingo (cited by Feely and Harzing 2003) has argued that there are several companies especially in China, South America and Middle East where the guideline is to speak same language as their customers. It is important to take into account that negotiations and legal documents are inevitable in mother tongue. This means that, for companies the priority is customer development needs. Thus, English in these situations does not have benefits for them. Further to this, according to Joshihara (cited by cited by Feely and Harzing 2003) he points out, in his studies that Japanese multinationals corporations most of the overseas offices are leading by Japanese people, this means that senior and medium management level prefer to carry on working in Japanese language.
This means that, the priority for several companies in Japan is to hire Japanese people in order to solve their language communication issues. It can be seen that even though there are some positive impacts on having English as a global language for global and business communication purposes, it can be argued that there are several evidences that English plays an important role in terms of misunderstandings and improvement opportunities in business communications whether aviation or multinational corporation
In conclusion, English as a global language clearly has a negative impacts on young people’s linguistic skills and behaviour through mass media. While , English has a positive effects in terms of global communications such as aviation, education and business, there are significant negative impacts on people due to the misunderstandings such as aviation field and business communication. Moreover, having English as a common language may affect negatively adults’ thinking through media due to the influences on mentality.
Additionally, English language plays an important role affecting young people’s behaviour and linguistic skills via mass media. Therefore, English as a worldwide tongue is influencing negatively local languages and by default its survival due to the pressure of the English language in daily life in the communities. Moreover, English language is responsible for damages in linguistic culture whether local communities or minorities in different countries. Therefore, governments and leaders should consider the adverse consequences of English as a global language when making decisions in mass media policies, and consider the importance of its impact on young people and minority communities in terms of linguistic and culture identity.
Crystal, D 2003 , Crystal, D 2003, English as a global language, Cambridge University Press, New York, New York, pp. 70,162.
Demont-Heinrich, C 2011,’Cultural imperialism versus globalisation of culture: Riding the structure-agency dialectic in global communication and media studies’, SOC4 Journal, Manuscript. 401, viewed February 2014, pp 3.
Feely, A & Harzing, A 2003,’ Language management in multinational companies’, Cross Cultural Management, vol 10, no. 2, pp. 46-47.
Fredriksson, R & Barner-Rasmussen, W & Piekkari, R 2006, ‘The multinational corporation as a multilingual organization’, viewed 3 February 2014, .
Gibbs, W 2002,’Saving Languages’, Scientific American, pp. 85. Hassan, A & Daniyal, M 2013,’ Carton network and its impact on behaviour of school going children’, International Journal of Management Economics and Social Sciences, Economics, pp. 8.
Kaul, V 2011,’Globalisation and media’, Mass communication and journalism, vol 1, pp.4, 5.
Kim, L & Siong, L & Fei, W & Ya’acob, A 2010,’ The English language and its impact on identities of multilingual Malaysian undergraduates’, Online Journal of language studies, vol 10, pp.95-96.
Krivonos, P 2007,’Communication in aviation safety:lessons learned and lesson required’, .
Majidi, A 2013,’ English as a global language; Threat or opportunity for minority languages?’, Mediterranean journal of social sciences, vol 4, np. 11, pp.34. Rogerson-Revell, P 2007, ‘Using English for international business a European case study’, English for specific purposes, vol 26, pp.104.
Weil , M & Pullin, P 2011, ‘English as a lingua france in education- Internationalisation speaks English’, .
Whaley, L 2003,’The future of native languages’, viewed 5 February 2014, http://www.elsevier.com/locate/futures/
SUGAM THAPA 13 hours ago
Thanks of your essay
rock B 24 hours ago
I love english bca it is a good language
Saurav Acharya 2 days ago
I am from Nepal...Many assignments are still pending which are awaiting the english language........Our country hasnot given more priority to this language as it is difficult and funny language...................our political leaders when the arrive the foreign land as a official visit they are unable to negotiate with others leader without seeing any article......Mainly this site is for the childern as they are the successor of the nation....They will kvercome the tragic situation if they learnt enhlish....
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ayesha 4 days ago
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sonal singh 6 days ago
i dont thing so english is important for us because what our mother tongue gives relif it cant provide us
ABI shrestha 7 days ago
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Loka teja 8 days ago
fr7 8 days ago
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Rubab ilyas 10 days ago
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venujackson 11 days ago
I am not an English person, but in my country we use English as a second language. of course i love English very much. and this article motivated me to learn English forever...!! thank you very much for the nice article!! KEEP IT UP. WELL DONE!!!!
tasleem 11 days ago
no one can survive and establish his business in he world. He can't communicate at world level.
RoySo 13 days ago
I use it to teach my spanish students, about the importance of English around the world
mark freemon 2 weeks ago
English is awesome language. This article us also good. I got big knowlage. Thanks for your article.
Johne 2 weeks ago
English is importante
Su 2 weeks ago
English is the most beautiful language in the world!!
Sayani 3 weeks ago
English language is a important our life
sanjana 3 weeks ago
every person needs to learn english from primary level to become a sucessesful person...
sanjana 3 weeks ago
english language is very important in todays lifes....
sourjana 3 weeks ago
english is the key to sucess......
Nixa 3 weeks ago
I want to learn english
English is an wonderful language.A man with out English is equal to the man with out clothes 3 weeks ago
I like English
onwuka eunice 3 weeks ago
Teena kuriakose 3 weeks ago
In my opinion malayalam is our bread and english is our blood.if we are good in speaking in english we are always heros and without english we all are zeros
MD 3 weeks ago
It's very great ...the way you present your thoughts about English language.
Mahesh 3 weeks ago
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hi 4 weeks ago
hi English rules
Parvina 4 weeks ago
I like English very much. I liked these words and I enjoyed it.
I hope one day I'll be master of my English and travel to very
many english-speaking countries!!!
Ana Paula Pereira 4 weeks ago
devaraj 4 weeks ago
English language is the very useful of our lifa
Hassan khan 5 weeks ago
English is a sweet language as well☺
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afroz 6 weeks ago
In Pakistan 49% people speak English language?!
definitely English is very important 6 weeks ago
English is very important
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ziya 7 weeks ago
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Vaibhavi shinde 7 weeks ago
Yes English is going to advance in our life...✌️
Usama Aryan 8 weeks ago
Yes, it is right that English is necessary language but the progress of every country based on it's mother language. I agree with Hina which had post 4 days ago.
Mee Mee Swar Tay 8 weeks ago
I think englidh language. Is very important for everybody
Hina 2 months ago
It's true English is a international language through it we communicate with other foreign people but the progress of any country based on its mother tongue like China whose progress based on its language not borrow language.
Muneer Ahmed Khilji 2 months ago
In my think english is very important for any profession and its also international language and its need for every people because class nursery to university levels we use english books and also english is our major subject.
Nithya priya 2 months ago
Yeeva gurung 2 months ago
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As good to learn English language
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stanley kumara from sri lanka 3 months ago
this page is very useful me as a teacher. Now English is multi National, it is must , again thanks lot .
AMADU M. KOROMA 3 months ago
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eral mankard, from sri lanka 3 months ago
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Micheal G 3 months ago
The statistic for Thailand was really inaccurate. Someone need to update it.
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mıstefa ğışoğlu 3 months ago
I think,english is the more important language.on the world don't you?
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Yinluck69 4 months ago
The statistic for "List of Countries by English Speaking Population" is totally WRONG for Thailand.
According to the above list more than one in four persons in Thailand can speak English ! In reality very few Thais can speak English !! If you are living or have lived in their country you would realize that what I said is true.
Thank you 3 times !!!
Rueru 4 months ago
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Deep 4 months ago
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this is an good and valuable speech for students who learn english as well for elders i wold be thankful to owner of this essay 5 months ago
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