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sabretou sabretou December 4, 2017 at 12:57 PM December 4, 2017 at 12:57 PM link permalink

I want to resurrect an old idea that has been proposed in different ways over time.

Looking at sentences, I found sentence #1331462 "I don't work for nobody". While this sentence can certainly be found in English, it is a tricky sentence as it is slang and liable to confuse learners.

My thought is that certain tags should be designated as "Markers" that, once applied to a sentence, will show up to the right of the sentence itself. I might make a mock-up of this later when I have time.

Markers can help 'mark' sentences that are slang, vulgar, factually untrue or using a non-standard dialect that is otherwise not its own language. Language learners can then choose in their settings whether or not to show sentences that are slang, or a particular dialect, etc.

In practice, they will be Tags, only they will show up prominently next to the sentence itself, so that learners can easily identify them.

I wonder what the community thinks of this.

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Selena777 Selena777 December 4, 2017 at 5:47 PM December 4, 2017 at 5:47 PM link permalink

I completely agree. The main feature of it should be the possibility to display or ignore whole categories of sentences using user's settings.

I suggest such categories:
1) Standard: grammatically correct and natural sentences, which fit in official rules of the given language and are suitable for all learners.
2) Dialect: regional dialects of languages, which aren't known by most native speakers from other regions.
3) Archaic.
4) Non-standard: colloquial forms which don't fit in official rules. They're useful for communication, but it's better to avoid them on exams.
5) Vulgar and adult (could be two separate categories or one). Contains curse words and/or adult content, might be not appropriate for children.
6) Less than natural: grammatically correct, but unlikely used in real life "texbook style" sentences.
7) @change or delete.

I suggest also categories to specify a country: "British English", "American English", "Brazilian Portugese", "Continental Portugese", etc.

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Objectivesea Objectivesea December 6, 2017 at 7:45 PM December 6, 2017 at 7:45 PM link permalink

I agree with @sabretou and @Selena777. For those people who are learning a new language, it must be frustrating to discover that they have spent their limited time in learning a substandard register of that language or one that is poorly understood by its native speakers in a country's capital city.

Since it may be impractical to mark hundreds of thousands of sentences as being thoroughly and completely standard, though, perhaps this feature should be implemented as a filter that would NOT display, according to a user's particular preferences, those particular sentences marked as dialectal, archaic, non-standard, vulgar or stilted.