5-speed listening (Pronunciation - Level 5)

Irish TV station 'forced' to use Queen's English






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Radio and TV presenters at Ireland's national broadcaster RTE are angry at being told to use Queen's English pronunciation. An Irish newspaper says RTE's broadcasters were given an A-Z guide of words, which tells them how to pronounce certain words to make sure they are clearly understood. The A-Z comes with audio clips with lessons of how to "properly" pronounce the "problem" words. An RTE official said the producers issued the guide to keep up standards. It said RTE had received complaints from the public over how certain words were mispronounced.

An Irish linguistics expert called the RTE's actions "internalized colonialism". He was surprised that Irish speakers had to use words with an English accent. He said: "The basic issue is RTE expects its staff to speak as if they were English. Why? We have our own form of English, which is different but fully legitimate and accepted worldwide." He highlighted some of the words that had to be used with a British English accent. He said Irish people don't pronounce the TH in 'birthday' like the English. He added that the Irish pronunciation of 'news,' "is and always has been 'nooze'".

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