How often do you use English?

mjd   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 05:49 GMT
This question is addressed to non-native speakers of English on the forum. How often do you use English in your daily life? Do you use if for your job, while surfing the net, with any friends? Does anyone only practice their English in this forum? (I'm not included in this question since I'm a native speaker).

I participate in this forum because of my interest in languages, I enjoy assisting others with their English if they so desire, and to get different viewpoints from around the world. Discussions regarding the English language also interest me, and while it's the purpose of this site, here on the forum talking about English seems to have gone the way of the dodo.
mjd   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 06:47 GMT
Oh, one more question. I was reading in another thread about the assumption some make that all young people in Europe speak English these days. How accurate would you say this is? I know a great many do, but does anyone have any estimates on the percentage of fluency among young Europeans?
cmhiv   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 07:05 GMT
Well, I am native English speaker, but I felt compelled to reply on this thread.

I use English about 85% in my daily life. With most people I speak in English, but I do a lot of conversing in Spanish and French (and then German on the computer). Also, I try to surf the internet in French so as to practice French.
Valentin Cognito   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 14:19 GMT
Hi mjd and cmhiv !

As a French, I guess I can answer this question !
First, I have to say that I'm not representative of other people since English is some kind of "passion" for me.
Those days, I'm spending a lot of time on this forum, chatting, or reading articles on the Internet. I would say that I use English about 60% or 70%. But that's an exception.
I also try to watch television, ie The Simpsons or South Park. I prefer watching cartoons because films are too difficult to understand (Once, I watched Seven and I only caught a few words...). English is also used a lot with computers, and as for me, I don't especially try to find a French version of a software.
Even if my written English is quite good (?), my understanding and especially my spoken English are rather poor, even if I have been learning English for 15 years now.

When you're at school (after 14 years old), you have to spend between 1 and 6/7 hours a week learning English, depending on what studies you do, but you also have the choice between English, German and Spanish.

English is now a requirement if you want to have a good job nowadays in France. But I think that English level of French students are not very good.

Just another thing : I did a work placement in London for 2 months and I think it helped me a lot.

I hope I answered your question, and I hope I improved a little bit the quality of this forum...


PS : cmhiv, whenever you want I can help you with your French, or just chat in French if you want.
all the sheep   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 14:28 GMT
when i put a post in this forum.

I hope I answered your question, and I hope I improved a little bit the quality of this forum...

Jean   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 14:37 GMT
I have to say that I only speak really English in this Forum or in computer-games over the internet ....

In school we are learning English ... but not on a very high level !
YES of course ... we learn it not bad in the school ... but it is not enough to explain everything in English and to show all your minds in that language !

Another problem is that in Germany everything is from the English world is prepared for German speakers ... that means for example that movies from the USA or the UK a only in the German language ... also without English subtitles !

English speaking video games are often full translated into German !

But we Germans use some English words in our German language cause of the influence of American culture !

I know that some universities try to have English lessons and English programs ... but all in all I think that it is not enough !

The TV is as I said full in German ... you only can watch English channels if you watch for example English news programs like CNN !
Jean   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 14:40 GMT
... but we Germans like English speaking music very much ... especially from England (my opinion) !

But German speaking music especially of the 80ties is very cool !
Valentin Cognito   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 18:17 GMT
I forgot one thing :
DVD are a real great invention !
When I buy one, I usually watch it first in French, then in english (I put the English subtitles on, so I can listen, and then read...)
Jean to Valentin Cognito   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 18:48 GMT
Yeah of course ... I forgot about that !!!
My last DVD movie was Resident Evil in German and in English :)
Tomomi   Sunday, April 06, 2003, 18:49 GMT
I use english every day!!! It's very popular in japan! I use with friends, internet, and see many many signs with english!
cmhiv   Monday, April 07, 2003, 01:02 GMT
Valentin, j'adorais si tu veux m'aider ! J'aime parler pour pratiquer le fran├žais.

D'ou viet-tu? La France ? Je viens des Etats Unis, en Californie. Et toi?
mjd   Monday, April 07, 2003, 06:57 GMT
Valentin Cognito,

"Seven" is one of my favorite movies; what did you find difficult about the dialogue?
phlauran   Monday, April 07, 2003, 07:26 GMT
I use for my studies ( all the documentations are in english ) , and for games ( english version are realesed before french one )
The level at school is not very hard
valentin > yes , it's a good thing
I often watch movies in english , to improve my level
phlauran to mjd   Monday, April 07, 2003, 07:30 GMT
it's hard , but it's still possible to understand
IF you can , try to watch "snatch" , firstly because it's a great film, secondly because brad pitt use a amzaing way to speak
I don't understand him ,whereas i watch the film in french ( which is my native language )
mjd   Monday, April 07, 2003, 07:34 GMT

Yeah, I've seen "Snatch" and while it's a good movie, Brad Pitt is extremely difficult to understand at times...even to me a native speaker of English. He is speaking in a kind of gypsy (pikey I believe) accent and using all sorts of slang that is alien to me as an American.

Brad Pitt in "Seven" should be much easier to understand than in "Snatch."