domingo, 28 de novembro de 2010
quarta-feira, 27 de outubro de 2010
segunda-feira, 25 de outubro de 2010
Some facts about the Language
Non native-speakers of the language now outnumber native speakers 3 to 1.
English is spoken as first language by more than 370 million people throughout the world, and is used as a second language by as many, if not more. One in five of the world's population speaks English with some degree of competence. It is an official or semi-official language in over 70 countries, and it plays a significant role in many more. English is not just one standard language, but can be thought of as a "family", which includes many different varieties.
Within a decade, 2 billion people will be studying English and about half the world - about 3 million people - will speak it. Non-native speakers of the language now outnumber native speakers 3 to 1, according to English language expert David Crystal. He recognizes that there is never before been a language that's been spoken by more people as a second language than a first. In Asia alone, the number of English-users has topped 350 million - roughly the combined populations of the United States, Britain and Canada. There are more Chinese children studying English - about 100 million - than there are Britons.
What people use English for:
The massive English-learning industry in India alone is a $100 million-per year business. It's the front line of a global revolution in which hundreds of millions of people are learning English, the planet's language for almost every kind of transaction. English is the main language of commerce, technology, communication, science, academic conferences, business, entertainment, airports and air-traffic control, diplomacy, radio, newspapers, books, sports, tourism, international competitions, pop music advertising etc. - and, increasingly, empowerment.
Over two-thirds of the world's scientists read in English. Three quarters of the world's mail is written in English. Eighty per cent of the world's electronically stored information is in English. Of the estimated forty million users of the Internet, some eighty per cent communicate in English, but this is expected to decrease to forty per cent as speakers of other languages get online.