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Friday, February 10, 2006

English speaking world becoming American speaking?

I have a problem. (No, not that kind of problem!) My problem is that a great percentage of the blog audience is American, and Americans spell... well, they spell American English. This is very different to the Queen's English, which most of the rest of the English speaking world speak. As a result of this, a Queen's English blog like mine is not going to be found as much as an American's English blog, due to the differences in the spelling of various search phrases.

For example, what if I write a post that uses a key word of 'organisation', as spelt with Queen's English. American English spells it as 'organization'. In fact, there are many words that the Americans use a z for, instead of an s.

If I do a search for 'organisation', Google finds 'only' 372 million results. However, if I search for 'organization', Google finds over 2 BILLION results. Therein lies the problem... the potential exists for a blog to be missed in a search simply because they use Queen's English instead of American English.

That's what I've been thinking about. In order to maximise the potential audience for your blog, it seems that you're going to have to start typing with American English.

Anyone else have any thoughts on this? Is anyone disappointed that they might have to change how they spell, in order to maximise their potential visitors? Or is it just me, who doesn't want to have to convert to 'Americanism'? *sigh*

Posted on 2/10/2006 10:40:00 AM Backlinks


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9 Comments:

Blogger Chancelucky said...

you'll just have to learn the civilized way. And why isn't it spelled New Sealand?

read a book many years ago about the importance of requisite variety in human language being every bit as important as biological requisite variety.

Went something like, language shapes thought, therefore if everyone thinks in only one language the possibilities become more limited or follow a certain shape.
Babel may have been a good thing.

2/10/2006 01:08:00 PM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

CiviliSed way? Considering that Queen's English came first, you could possibly say that American English is the UNciviliSed way. :-)

2/10/2006 01:23:00 PM  
Anonymous lee pletzers said...

I've been using US spelling for 8 years now and US grammar but only because I submit my work to US publishers. If I focused on the UK, I would probably switch back. Then again, UK grammar and NZ grammar is slightly different.

2/10/2006 01:56:00 PM  
Blogger NightFallTech said...

Just because Queens english came first, doesn't make it more civilised, Stone Age man came before the romans... (not that i support lazy american spelling :)

2/10/2006 05:38:00 PM  
Anonymous Sam said...

I'm Canadian,..I understand & agree. Thankfully in our schools (as my daughter recently learned) both spellings are accepted but the Queen's English is the primarily taught.

2/13/2006 01:00:00 PM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

Hi Sam, thanks for dropping by. Hope you continue to find interesting things here! :-)

2/13/2006 01:05:00 PM  
Anonymous Mik said...

Being a Brit in the US I have adopted the US spelling, well, except for aluminium instead of aluminum. Of course. When I say it I get funny looks because it is pronoucned so differently. I also still use "arse" instead of ass.

If I am writing to the folks back home I revert back to English spelling. Mum wil always be Mum and not Mom!

Mik

2/13/2006 01:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Karen Lee Field said...

Why should we change the way we spell? I strongly disagree with this, and won't be doing it.

In fact, I'll stop here before I offend someone.

2/14/2006 12:35:00 PM  
Blogger Alan Howard said...

You think offending anyone worries me on this blog? *grin* Be as offensive as you like on here. Unless, of course, you don't want to take the heat...

Besides, the question wasn't intended to say we NEED to change how we spell, it was more intended to show that changing our spelling to be more American English is likely to get more people visiting our sites.

2/14/2006 01:05:00 PM  

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