understanding the indian accent

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BurnItDwn

Lifer
Oct 10, 1999
26,084
1,561
126
I don't think I've called "tech support" for anything in at least 10 years.

That said, I do have conf calls with india just about every day, but thats because we don't hire people any more, instead we just contract more off shore consultants to fill in the gaps, and now each one of us has 3 people in India doing some of our work ... after over a year of this ... the three of them pretty much add up to having 1 more person in the office helping out.
 

Blintok

Senior member
Jan 30, 2007
433
0
0
bah. Indian accents. come to Canada and try to understand what the farking newfys are saying. (Newfy = Canadian from the province of Newfoundland) no idea what they are saying and they speak the same language as me.
 

ShadowOfMyself

Diamond Member
Jun 22, 2006
4,230
2
0
I find most foreign english accents to be easier to understand than most english that comes out of the UK

The thing is, when speaking a second language, you tend to be more literal about how you spell words, whereas someone who has spoken it all their lives just rushes through and leaves half of the letters out

And america needs to get rid of their southern accent, because it makes whoever is using it appear twice as dumb regardless of what they are saying
 

sygyzy

Lifer
Oct 21, 2000
14,001
4
76
Here's a tip, don't use words that Americans consider relatively common and expect them to understand. I had 24 Hour Fitness call me and tell me I owed them money (I didn't). I got upset, and said they were trying to extort money from me. I then said "you're acting like the Mafia." The guy I was talking to said, and I quote, "no sir, this is not the Mafia, this is 24 Hour Fitness." I was so dumbstruck that I couldn't even be upset. I apologized for the misunderstanding and hung up.

I am marveling at your response so much it's actually taking me some extra time to reply. The tip should be "Don't use words that a foreigner might not understand." That's what you really mean. Using a phrase like "You're acting like the mafia" is a jerk move. Yes, 99% of Americans might get the cultural reference but an Indian person might not. When I speak to a foreigner, I don't go out of my way to confuse them. Why would you? I don't say things like "Wazzup dawg, I hope you bring that heat tonight on our pick up game. And make sure you wear that wife beater like you did last time. I love taking down Jersey Shore look a likes."

The best part about your story is you consider the word Mafia to be universally common.
 

Red Squirrel

No Lifer
May 24, 2003
67,574
12,216
126
www.anyf.ca
"Oh I'm sorry, I must of hit the wrong number, could you transfer me to the English department please?"

Actually one time I was with a tech support from a software vendor and the accent was VERY hard to understand. So I decided to try French in hopes I get someone in Canada. I got the same guy trying to talk in French. D:

If you think Indian English is bad, you should hear Indian French. I went on with it in hopes it would get better, but reverted back to English. THAT is also very fun to do to people, randomly switch language. :p
 

thejunglegod

Golden Member
Feb 12, 2012
1,358
36
91
Hahaha. I can very well understand how difficult it would be trying to understand our accent. Heck, even i have trouble understand some of the people in our vicinity in Mumbai. See, Mumbai is a cultural amalgamation of people all over India. Everyone here thinks that he has made it big, so most try to converse in English which is funny thanks to the various types of Indian accents:

1. Gujaratis(North-West India) mostly pronounce 'z' as 'j'. eg. Pizza = Pijja, hazard = hajard.

2. East indians are just plain weird and have a totally different accent. A friend of mine who's from Manipur (East India) once asked me, " you listen to Mitlicka?" I had to ask him again and again till I realised he meant 'Metallica'. Iron Maiden was - Ayn Maytheyn.

3. Biharis(North) also have very accentuated pronunciations. 'F' is always 'Ph' & 'v' is always 'b'. So 'forever' would be 'phoreber', 'fast' would be 'phast' & 'very very' would be 'bery bery'. :D

4. Finally South Indians will give you the funniest accent of the lot. “Do indo do egualdo four” is what a maths prof once said for '2 into 2 is equal to four'. I remember there being tears of laughter when I first heard that.

There are obviously more, but if I try to cover all of them, it'll take a long long time.
 
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thejunglegod

Golden Member
Feb 12, 2012
1,358
36
91
"Oh I'm sorry, I must of hit the wrong number, could you transfer me to the English department please?" Actually one time I was with a tech support from a software vendor and the accent was VERY hard to understand. So I decided to try French in hopes I get someone in Canada. I got the same guy trying to talk in French. If you think Indian English is bad, you should hear Indian French. I went on with it in hopes it would get better, but reverted back to English. THAT is also very fun to do to people, randomly switch language.

You are in no state to criticize anyone my friend. You "must of" dozed off when your teacher was talking about the word "have".
 

Soundmanred

Lifer
Oct 26, 2006
10,784
6
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You are in no state to criticize anyone my friend. You "must of" dozed off when your teacher was talking about the word "have".

No, he's ok. Just a minor misunderstanding.
The accents are just horrible and hard to understand for the majority of people.
I don't spend my time and money trying to understand someone for half an hour when trying to get a simple problem resolved. I just ask for an English support person so I don't have to keep asking "what was that you said?" or just take a wild guess at what they are trying to say and make things worse.
 

Ninjahedge

Diamond Member
Mar 2, 2005
4,149
1
91
Because, like all cultures, there are ugly indian women as well.... ;)

Like I said before, a lot of times it is the speed of speech rather than the accent that gets confusing. Also, as mentioned, cultural references can get lost or confused. Polysyllabic words can also be more confusing. Most people know how to say "dog", many, including americans, do not know what the hell a duodenum or conflagration is.

The hardest part in many of these things is physical presence. I can't say how many times that I have been able to understand someone in person and not on the phone. Hell, even MEETING someone makes it easier to understand them on the phone later... you get an idea of where they are coming from.


Talking cold is just too hard for some heavier accents.
 

Matthiasa

Diamond Member
May 4, 2009
5,755
23
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Um if you have trouble with Indian accents, just wait until you have to work with those from other countries in Asia.
Even better if having to work with those that are only just learning English to the point they are still studying it even after having started working.