Talk:California English

Jump to navigation Jump to search
WikiProject California (Rated C-class, High-importance)
WikiProject iconThis article is within the scope of WikiProject California, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of the U.S. state of California on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
C-Class article C  This article has been rated as C-Class on the project's quality scale.
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.
WikiProject Languages (Rated C-class)
WikiProject iconThis article is within the scope of WikiProject Languages, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of standardized, informative and easy-to-use resources about languages on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
C-Class article C  This article has been rated as C-Class on the project's quality scale.
 ???  This article has not yet received a rating on the project's importance scale.
  1. March 2005 – June 2006

Article title[edit]

Why is this "California English" rather than "Californian English"? It's a very awkward wording. "Californian English" would be much more suitable in my opinion. -Branddobbe 06:20, 15 March 2006 (UTC)

I agree. No one else seems to object, I guess. Maybe we can go ahead with a move then? I suspect Californian English already exists though, in which case an admin will have to do it. Theshibboleth 14:09, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
Well, I object. To my ear "California English" sounds much more natural than "Californian English". Notice how [1] is labeled "California English", not "Californian English". Also compare 57 Google hits for "California English" for Stanford University websites vs. only 2 hits for "Californian English". (I restricted it to Standford sites to make sure we were getting mostly scholarly pages; other California universities could be checked too.) User:Angr 14:20, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
I also object. It is not at all unusual in English for a noun to function as an adjective in a combined form. olderwiser 15:53, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
California is indeed both a noun and an adjective - "California Girls" for example. The page is fine where it is. — sjorford++ 16:26, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
See also the Guardian style guide. — sjorford++ 16:27, 4 July 2006 (UTC)
I actually can't think of one single thing I would trust the Guardian on. And they are most certainly incorrect when they write "the adjective is California" (my emphasis). That represents a grotesque misunderstanding of English. California in "California Girls" is no more an adjective than is music in "music theory" ("musical theory" would mean something else). (Yeah, I know, it's tricky; but "the adjective..." is wrong.) Putting two nouns together (even with a space between them) is absolutely no prob in English.
What I've read by the experts (that I recall) suggests that both suggested titles for this article would be correct. I've seen both "California English" and "Californian English." It's almost a question of feel. "New York English" would be correct because "New Yorkian" isn't a word (or, rather, New York, unlike California, can be an adjective). And "America English" would clearly be wrong, same with "Canada English." But "Boston English," or "Bostonian English"? That's as tricky a question as "California English" vs. "Californian English." Tricky. --Cultural Freedom talk 2006-07-04 22:10 (UTC)
I agree that Californian can be an adjective as well as a noun referring to an inhabitant, but there really aren't many examples. Besides California Girls and California English, I can think of the California Raisins (thought up by the California Raisin Advisory Board and California oranges, and in none of these examples would "Californian" sound right. Special:Allpages reveals the California barberry, California beer and breweries, California buttercup, California cheeseburger, California Cuisine, California wine and many, many more examples. Sequoia says an alternative name is California Redwood. The only articles using Californian as an adjective are Californian Australian Football League, Californian Hindu textbook controversy, Californian Stakes, and Californian rabbit. User:Angr 07:48, 5 July 2006 (UTC)
After reflecting on this a bit, I think "California English" is the correct title, if we mean the English of California, the English spoken in California. Californian English would be English with Californian properties, or characteristics. This would of course characterize California English, but it would also characterize the speaking habits of a New Yorker who said "that is, like, gnarly." By way of analogy: musical theory is a theory with musical properties. The theory itself could be a theory about linguistics. Music theory, on the other hand, is a theory of music. Likewise, California English is the English of California. --Cultural Freedom talk 2006-07-05 08:07 (UTC)
As many of the other regional variations on American English regional differences have noun-noun constructions I suppose I can overcome my grammatical reservations and accept the title as California English. Still though, it bothers me that there is inconsistency in the titles, for example with the article on English in the South being titled Southern American English. Theshibboleth 10:45, 5 July 2006 (UTC)
If there's an inconsistency, it's the term "American English" instead of *"America English", but that's a real inconsistency in usage; no one would say *"America English". And Southern American English just follows that pattern: it's [Southern [American English]]. User:Angr 10:54, 5 July 2006 (UTC)
There's a strange rule (which I believe may be codified in a style guide, the MLA or some other) regarding the use of states' names as adjectives. Whereas one can freely use the adjective form of countries' names with nouns -- Japanese beef, French wine, American cheese -- one cannot do so for states. Usually, the adjective form (Californian, Washingtonian, New Yorker, etc.) can only be used to refer specifically to people from that state. When you want to speak, for example, of wine from California, apples from Washington, or the politics of New York State, you would refer to "California wines", "Washington apples" and "New York politics". Most people would probably agree that the phrases "Californian wines", "Washingtonian apples" and "New Yorker politics" just don't sound right. Strangely enough, however, British English seems fond of using "Californian" (and possibly other state adjective forms also) with nouns -- a simple search of the word "Californian" in the BBC News website will show you many strange combinations. Among them: "Californian condor", known obviously on this side of the pond as the California Condor. Maybe it just sounds better to them, or maybe they adhere more strictly to the rules of grammar at the expense of comfort on the ears. (Just to prove how wonderfully inconsistent American English is, one could reasonably speak of "Washingtonian politics", assuming one was referring to politics in the age of George Washington.)-- 04:36, 23 February 2007 (UTC)
Well, as someone whose only linguistic qualification is that I grew up in California, but have spent the last 20+ years living in Europe and the UK, all I can say is that whenever I hear a Brit use "Californian" as an adjective (which is almost always) I involuntarily cringe. Only a foreigner would say "Californian English". JZH (talk) 15:02, 11 November 2018 (UTC)

Requested move[edit]

The argument for (and mostly against) this move is made in the section above. I oppose this move as unidiomatic. Next we will be speaking of someone's "New English home", instead of "New England home" (I have actually seen this: in the works of an Englishman who spent a few months in the United States.) Septentrionalis 19:39, 6 July 2006 (UTC)

The result of the nomination was Not moved -- Kim van der Linde at venus 04:38, 14 July 2006 (UTC)

Comments on History and Accent[edit]

DISCLAIMER: I am neither a liguistic nor a historian so please interpret these comments accordingly.

The linguistic history on this page I found a bit curious. My understanding is that the original anglophone visitors/settlers in California (even before it was annexed by the U.S.) were predominantly Texans (and others from the southern areas of the U.S.). The Gold Rush, of course, changed things substantially but I have always understood from what I've read that this early history was still influential in California's development. I lived in the SF Bay Area for 4 years back in the 90s. Although most of the people I encountered had fairly neutral accents, most of the people I actually dealt with regularly were actually from other parts of the U.S. To the extent that I did meet people who actually were from families that had lived in California for some generations I tended to hear traits in their speech that are not described here. In particular I had two friends, one from the north bay and one from the Eureka area, both with similar accents (and similar to others I had met in California). Their accents although not "thick" by my standards were very much what I've always thought of as the "western" accent. That is, an accent that has a lot of similarities to the "southern" accents although not quite as distinct (notably these friends grew up saying "y'all" but stopped as they grew into their professional lives). These aspects of the accent and the dialect (and their history) don't seem to be discussed here. I was curious why.

Your experience might be fairly anecdotal. Scholorly sources find more generalized traits but there will always be exceptions to the tendencies. Basically what you're saying is that California English is influenced from multiple regions, which the article already states. AEuSoes1 04:11, 9 July 2006 (UTC)
I think that there should be some audio samples of what is meant by a California accent. Would this be the thick sort of Southern California dialect we've heard from, say, Keanu Reeves and Alicia Silverstone, or is more of a Northern California accent I'm not especially aware of? Daniel M. Laenker 08:44, 22 November 2006 (GMT)
I grew up in on the outskirts of the S.F. Bay Area, and I agree that native Californians outside of the major urban areas have a definite "country" twang. I didn't realize it until I moved to San Francisco and people started teasing me about my "accent". I don't suppose it is much different than other western U.S. accents like you might hear in rural areas in Nevada or Oregon. 25 January 2009 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 06:36, 26 January 2009 (UTC)

In Southern California, I`ve never heard "Ya`ll" except by ebonics users and people from various Southern states. Also, there is no such thing as a "neutral" or nonexistant accent or dialect, they might not be an identifiable regionl accent, but they still are accents. Neotribal42 19:07, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

There's a definite difference in accent between northern and southern California. Northerners, in my experience, seem to speak in a strained, staccato fashion that is unusual further south. (talk) 04:21, 15 August 2010 (UTC)

Northern vs. Southern[edit]

User:A Doon just removed without explanation a bunch of facts about the difference between Northern and Southern California, most notably the fact that "the" is not used with highway numbers in Northern California ("the 5" and so on) and the Northern-California shibboleth "hella". Why? These are both well-known and notable facts about California English.

On the other hand, the fact that San Franciscans don't refer to their city by cute nicknames doesn't seem to me to be a particularly interesting or notable fact. Lots of cities are referred to as "the city". AJD 23:36, 23 August 2006 (UTC)

I think that's a meaningful statement about the Bay Area, particularly when Sacramentoans and San Jose residents refer to San Francisco as The City, even as their cities are technically larger. It defers to the urban primacy of San Francisco in Northern CA even from the Gold Rush days. Daniel M. Laenker 08:47, 22 November 2006 (GMT)

[[Image:NonFreeImageRemoved.svg -->|thumb|right|The San Francisco Warriors' "the City" logo]]

The Golden State Warriors, while playing in San Francisco, actually had "the City" on their jerseys and logo, rather than "San Francisco". This shows the extent to which San Francisco is referred to as "the city"—they could print that without any ambiguities. ¿ςפקιДИτς! 02:43, 25 November 2006 (UTC)
Were the facts he removed verifiable by means of cited sources? If not, he was quite right to remove them. The same goes for the lack of cute nicknames for San Francisco. User:Angr 05:00, 24 August 2006 (UTC)
Let's see... A Doon removed the citation for "the" with freeways along with removing the fact itself (Geyer 2001: "'The' freeway in southern California"). "Hella" was not cited in the article as it stood, but Bucholtz et al. (2005: "Hella Nor Cal or Totally So Cal?") report that "hella" is stereotypically associated with northern California by Californians. AJD 05:14, 24 August 2006 (UTC)

I strongly protest A Doon's deletion of "bucket" and "trippy," based on his/her not hearing these in 8 years California experience. I have lived in California about six times that long, and I know these terms to be correct, especially "trippy," which I would even say is common and ordinary. "Bucket" is also correct, but I will concede, less common. Fluffbrain 28 August

I also protest, at least, the removal of "trippy". I've never heard anyone say bucket, but "trippy" has definitely been around for a while (and I've lived in SoCal my entire life). -Branddobbe 08:08, 21 September 2006 (UTC)
It's "boo-kay". ptkfgs 03:15, 7 September 2006 (UTC)
I’ll second bucketWiki Wikardo 11:18, 18 October 2006 (UTC)
The burden of finding sources falls on those wishing to include material, not those wishing to remove it. Find a source and it's appropriate to put it back in, otherwise not. Ƶ§œš¹ [aɪm ˈfɻɛ̃ⁿdˡi] 20:51, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

I don't know the arguments going about North and South variations, but there are significant differences between NorCal and SoCal language. There needs to be mention of this. For example, statements about how Californians refer to freeways with the word the is only a SoCal method, and is simply wrong for NorCal. Also, phrase-abbreviate words such as Hyphy and Hella is a phenomenon of NorCal. Fcsuper 05:53, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

I've already talked about hella... well, hella. It's used often in SoCal these days as well. JuJube 05:56, 23 April 2007 (UTC)
Ok. It's blended into the article instead of a distinctive section. Fcsuper 15:02, 24 April 2007 (UTC)
Southern Californians do refer to Freeways as "The 10", "The 101", etc. But this really only applies to Freeways. The article states that,

"...California State Route 1, which runs down the coast, is called "Highway 1" or simply "one" in Northern California, but "PCH" (for Pacific Coast Highway) in Southern California, sometimes pronounced as "peach" but much more often as "the PCH"."" I was born and raised in SoCal and I never heard anyone refer to PCH as "The PCH". It is pretty much always called simply PCH or, sometimes, Coast Highway. The "The" designation is always used for freeways, not highways. For example, in "I Love LA", Randy Newman rolls down Imperial Highway, not "The Imperial Highway". And these highway names are not nicknames, they are actually legally defined routes that are separate from the numbered highway. For example, most of Imperial Highway is synonymous with Highway 90. But part of Hwy 90 runs separately as The Marina Freeway, while Imperial Hwy continues along a different route. Part of Pacific Coast Highway is not signed as Hwy 1 near the San Diego County line. And many parts of Hwy 1 have different names. In much of West LA and Santa Monica, it is actually Sepulveda Blvd. and Lincoln. People in NorCal don't call it PCH because it isn't called that there. From Santa Barbara to San Francisco it is mostly called Cabrillo Highway. North of San Francisco it is Shoreline Highway. This is true for freeways, too, "The Hollywood Freeway" is a confusing term for many because it actually runs along several different numbered freeways. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 05:42, 25 April 2007 (UTC).

As a third generation Southern Californian, I can attest that people in So Cal DO use THE in front of freeway numbers (it is correct to say the 101, the 405, etc.) As far as I know, Northern Californians do NOT. The information given in this article is incorrect. Also, PCH is just PCH. No THE. The information given directly above is correct. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:34, 30 June 2009 (UTC)

yep, they even use "the" in the news for traffic reports. on the topic of N vs S variation, is there any way someone can edit the phonemics section to include that in socal, people tend to glottalise final plosive T's?? ie. and its spreading from the valley girl dialect. MattTabarnaknaytev (talk) 19:52, 28 July 2009 (UTC)

Pitch range[edit]

Not being a linguist, I'll post this for discussion rather than edit directly: one of the most recognizable features of California English is that its speakers use a broader pitch range than most other U.S. speakers. The Valley Girl song is an extreme example of this (which still occurs in the San Fernando Valley). That is, Californians begin sentences at a higher pitch and end them at a lower pitch than (for example) Midwesterners. Durova 20:41, 20 September 2006 (UTC)

What you're saying might apply to subcultures, but I doubt it applies to Californians in general. Rlitwin (talk) 22:21, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

Talk to a random high school age girl in the bay area and you'll experience this phenomena. I consider it a lilt, as the pitch usually goes up at the end of the sentence. Go listen to Zappa's Valley Girl, you'll hear the lilt in the first 30 seconds. It is still very common. Androsynth (talk) 15:15, 20 May 2017 (UTC)


Is this a SoCal thing? I ain’t never heard it —Wiki Wikardo 11:18, 18 October 2006 (UTC)

I lived in Sacramento, and we used it there.Jzcrandall (talk) 17:40, 3 September 2008 (UTC)
  • Me neither, and I am from SoCal. Danny Lilithborne 08:49, 22 November 2006 (UTC)
  • This is a California Asian-American thing; both NorCal and SoCal AAs use it. Rin Tohsaka 18:28, 10 December 2006 (UTC)
    • Really? As a Northern California Asian-American in a predominantly Asian-American community, I would think I would have heard it at least once. ¿ςפקιДИτς! 02:21, 11 December 2006 (UTC)
  • I don't think it is as wide-spread as it is being made out to be. You probably have to be part-Hawaiian to understand it. I've only seen the term used in media. For example: Part Asian, 100% Hapa - --Stacey Doljack Borsody 07:47, 11 December 2006 (UTC)

'Hapa' is certainly catching on in the SF Bay area. It's tied in part to the frequent use of race-specific census and fill-out-this-form questions, when so many respondents are now of mixed race. Also with the celebrity of various mixed-race individuals.

Overall, I agree with the article's linguistic contentions, but must admit I am not familiar with the scientific symbols. This may be anecdotal, but it's based upon my family living in the SF Bay Area for a full century. -Paul Carlson

Ive lived in SoCal all my life and I`ve heard it only a few times. All of them, it was a half asian or pacific islander and half european decent person saying it. My conclusion: valid, just like mulatto and mezcla; said only rarely, but stil valuable as a cultural associational term.Neotribal42 18:59, 21 October 2007 (UTC)

Hapa means half in Hawaiian, and almost always refers to a person with one parent Caucasian and the other parent something else. It is short for "Hapa-Haole" which you still hear from time to time, but most of the time you will just say 'hapa' as in "She looks hapa" (that 100% hapa made me laugh, it is such a good representation of most people from Hawaii ;) ) Anyway... this is supposed to be a California Dialect page and since the only people I hear use this word have ties to Hawaii, I will go out on a limb and say this word really isn't a candidate for "California English" (just yet anyway) --Billy Nair (talk) 10:15, 15 February 2008 (UTC)

The passage as it now stands says that hapa can apply to FOBs. Eh? I'm guessing that it formerly said "hapa meaning half-Islander and FOB meaning Asian immigrant", and the hapa part got expanded without enough attention to making the rest of the sentence make sense. —Tamfang (talk) 22:10, 19 November 2008 (UTC)

FOBs (Fresh Off the Boat) can mean anyone from another country, I guess, that has not assimilated, but you rarely hear an Asian called a FOB, it is usually a Polynesian. But if you were born and raised in "the islands" with one white parent (making you hapa) your chances of being FOB-ish are a lot lower than other FOBs. If you are half Samoan half Tongan few people will ever think of you as hapa, yet there is a good chance that if you moved to California in your early adult life you would be called a FOB. Don't agree with hapa being a term for a FOB. --Billy Nair (talk) 20:04, 1 December 2009 (UTC)

Vowel Raising before ŋ[edit]

This happens to me, and I live in NW Kansas, isn't this just a General American thing?Cameron Nedland 17:42, 26 December 2006 (UTC)

  • As a Bay Area life-long resident, I've always used the raised I (as in keen) for words like king and sing; I've never known any other pronunciation until a few years ago. I can, however say and hear the differences, though they are very slight to me.

I also raise it when I drop the G in -ing forms, so even if there's no /ŋ/ there I raise as well. So I wind up saying stuff like "dreenkeen" (sampa = /dr\iNkin/) for drinking —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:35, 24 February 2008 (UTC)

This is just anecdotal. Rlitwin (talk) 22:22, 4 June 2009 (UTC)


the overwhelming majority of written work regarding "hella", both by linguists and casual observers of popular culture alike, describe "hella" as characteristic of the Northern California lexicon, and describe the San Francisco Bay Area as it's place of birth. In so far as this word has entered the vocabulary of speakers outside the Bay Area, it has been through diffusion--and the further from the epicenter, the less frequent the usage. Thus, recent deletions of the passage referring to the word hella are not justified, nor has anyone, to my knowledge, referenced a source that would contradict the preponderance of referrable works (including those already cited) which support it's continued inclusion. Triggtay 06:25, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

  • Nevertheless, the part saying "hella" is seldom, if ever, used in SoCal is patently false, as I can give you no less than two popular artists from SoCal that have used it. JuJube 06:29, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Like whom? As someone said down below, it's only NorCal transplants that say it. I've lived in SoCal all my life and it's not a common phrase among those who grew up here. It may be an overstatement to say it is seldom used, but I certainly think its unwarranted to say it's "popular throughout the state", as the article currently claims. Therefore, I'm going to delete that part. sdbulldog 22:03, 24 January 2011 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk)
  • I agree. When I was a teenager in Sacramento I used it all the time. Now that I live on the east coast I almost never hear it unless I talk to my friends back in NorCal.Jzcrandall (talk) 17:43, 3 September 2008 (UTC)
'K. As I noted in my last edit summary, I put in a {{fact}} just to get someone (you?) to actually connect the statements regarding "hella" with the references at the bottom.
By the way, you might want to do something about those greengrocer's apostrophes of yours. +ILike2BeAnonymous 06:31, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

I've also heard (and used) "hell of" (said as one word: "hel-love") as a strictly ironic replacement for "hella" (I've been a Bay Area resident all my life).

I've lived in SoCal my entire life (25 years). Hella is so infrequently used down here, that I didn't even hear of the word until I was 20 (after a friend of mine returned from a bay area trip), and we generally laugh whenever we hear some one from NorCal use it. On the rare occasion that we do use the word hella, it is usally used as a joke or comically. The NorCal/SoCal hella difference should stay. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Catgirl667 (talkcontribs) 22:52, 25 April 2007 (UTC).
I changed hella because I live in orange county never hear anybody say it.(Recharge330 (talk) 15:29, 5 June 2008 (UTC))
I've lived in SoCal for 30 years. Grew up in Long Beach. Only ever heard "hella" used when I got to college and met NorCal folk. The people who I know who do use it in SoCal are usually NorCal transplants.
We're talking about slang here. Does slang have such a prominent place in an article about California English? Rlitwin (talk) 22:23, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

As a NorCal resident for the very vast majority of my life, I just wanted to say thank god for those of you who have come out to say that SoCal doesn't use "hella"! I heard that recently from a friend, and I was devastated. Hella is a NorCal thing and should NOT move to SoCal, as I'm very sure most SoCal residents would like as well. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:32, 19 March 2012 (UTC)

Place names[edit]

The text about Norcal, Socal and Frisco is relevant and factually correct. There was no reason to delete it. Similarly, there was no reason to substitute "Sactown" for "Sacto", since the list says explicitly, "and other nicknames. I've heard Sacto, but not Sactown - how about a cite? Until then, I'm putting it back the way it was. I'm using the revert procedure because it's easier, not because I'm accusing anyone of vandalism. And no, I'm not one of the no-revert-rule people. Cbdorsett 07:43, 24 January 2007 (UTC)

Actually, even the California State Anthem itself refers to Sacramento as "Sactown", not "Sacto". Observe,
From Oakland to Sactown
The Bay Area and back down
Cali is where they put they mack down
Give me love!
Triggtay 09:01, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Okay, so it's used in a rap song - that doesn't make it the State Anthem :). Just for the record, I noticed the nickname on a list of city nicknames on Wikipedia. That list includes both of the nicknames we're talking about here. I still see no reason to prefer one over the other. Cbdorsett 09:05, 25 January 2007 (UTC)
Are you sure that's the state anthem? I believe you're referring to I Love You, California. Hachiko 18:36, 12 February 2007 (UTC)
I've lived in the Bay Area all my life, and I think I've heard 'Sacto' once or twice, but mostly just as 'Sac'. I sometimes call it Sakuramento, after an anime club from there. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 06:41, 1 March 2007 (UTC).

I changed it to "sactown," because that nickname is used more frequently than "sacto." And if anyone complains, I'll change it to Sacramento's REAL nickname: nutSac. You can add sacto if you want, but sactown needs to stay. catgirl667 4/25/2007

Having lived in Sacramento for eighteen years now, I can safely say that "Sacto" seems to have prevalence typically in just the Downtown region and "Sactown" is accepted outside of the city proper. I have heard denizens of some nearby cities in the metropolitan area like Davis or Folsom refer to the city proper as "Capital City". So, "Sactown" has held more harmony throughout the entire city than has others like "Sacto"; simply saying "Sacramento" is however more profound than using its nicknames. Seemingly disparaging nicknames like "nutSac" or "Cowtown" is accepted here as we find it risibly amusing, but you will not hear our residents use those terms in parlance, except for humorous effect. Referencing for this can be easily found, but I am at a loss for time right now. Slof 22:36, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
Question, since I'm addressing a Sacto resident here: is it true that people call it (or at least used to call it) "Sackatomato", as Herb Caen used to say? Is/was this widespread, or just another bit of three-dot journalism? +ILike2BeAnonymous 00:09, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
That and its variants ("Sack-of-tomatoes", "Sac of Tomatoes") used to have prevalence as one of its nicknames said by people outside of the area. However, the decline of tomato production as a crop and transition to other mainstay crops since the latter half of the twentieth century has dated this nickname. You might even say that it is obsolete. Slof 02:57, 28 April 2007 (UTC)
This material may be true, but what does it have to do with a dialect of English? Isn't there a better article to handle what people call the Bay Area, or nicknames for Sacramento? ·:· Will Beback ·:· 02:07, 18 June 2007 (UTC)

i have heard scaramneto called suck a tomato. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 21:01, 30 December 2007

This is about slang. What is the significance of slang to California English, if there is such a thing? Rlitwin (talk) 22:23, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

my two cents two years later: as i understand it, 'sacto' is the postal abbreviation from ages ago. badmachine (talk) 07:14, 19 February 2010 (UTC)


Is it just me or is this article overwhelmingly NorCal-centric? There is very little discussion about the LA basin or San Diego meto, both of which are bigger than the Bay area. Perhaps, some more discussion of the effects of Spanish on the pronunciation and vocabulary of SoCal. At the very lease exchange a few of the NorCal examples for SoCal examples, in the interest of equal time.HoratioVitero 15:45, 17 May 2007 (UTC)

  The Bay Area has a much larger population than San Diego metro.

Freeway nomenclature?[edit]

Isn't this article about a dialect of English? Does it really need a whole section about freeway nomenclature? Larry V (talk | e-mail) 20:18, 5 August 2007 (UTC)

I'd say definitely not, especially since a great majority of the section itself isn't even necessarily true, so much as a series of gross generalizations.President David Palmer 12:57, 6 August 2007 (UTC)
HELLA YEA i agree because in Minnesota we always refer to highways as "94" "35W/35E" "494" "694" etc, we never say I-94 or I-35W ick gross. In terms of a linguistic view, why would people refer to highways with the Interstate prefix when its definitely easier to refer to them without. What source said it anyway? Agreed, grossly generalized. Davumaya 07:46, 23 August 2007 (UTC)
Agreed - i'm in milwaukee and we always say '94' '45' '43', and for the exits i never hear anyone refer to them by number...its always 'Take 94 to Van Buren', etc. In fact, can anyone name a place where they actually DO say "take the <insert highway name> highway to exit 334B"? 19:25, 30 August 2007 (UTC)
The distinction between southern California and other parts of the US where I've lived is not the omission of the "I" or "Interstate" - it's the addition of the definite article "the." For example, in NJ, "take 295 to 42" but in LA, "take the 5 to the 405." But I believe the paragraph about San Diego County not adhering to the use of "the" is mistaken: I've lived in San Diego for several years, and everybody here says, "the 805 is jammed; take the 5 instead." Not sure how to document that... can examples of actual usage be used? E.g.:

There are only two places I have ever heard the letter "I" used when describing an Interstate highway, and that is in Detroit and Sacramento. Interestingly enough, I-80 is referred to as "Interstate 80". —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jzcrandall (talkcontribs) 17:48, 3 September 2008 (UTC)

I heard I-nn often enough in my youth, near the intersection of I-57 and I-74. —Tamfang (talk) 22:18, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
Sacramento has a Business-80 and an I-80, hence the distinction. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:12, 23 May 2012 (UTC)

I grew up in San Diego County during the 50's and 60's. As I recall, there was some use of either "US" or "State" to prefix numbers: "US 80" or "State 94", although perhaps the unadorned number was the most common usage. I never used, nor do I recall others using "the" in describing highways; this sound rather pretentious to me. But since the article seems to be saying this is used for Interstates, such usage may have developed with the increase of that system. There wasn't a lot of interstate in SD County during my time there. Wschart (talk) 19:26, 24 June 2010 (UTC)

Completely unsubstantiated and incorrect. In Texas we refer to all of our city highways as freeways as well. This entire section has been totally made up by whoever wrote it, and I would vote to just delete it, as it is false and doesn't contribute anything. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:23, 9 December 2010 (UTC)

Many freeways in Southern California are not interstates. Or, they may be interstates for part of the route and state highways for another (see, 91 or 210, for instance). So, it is more accurate to say 91 or 210 instead of I-91 or I-210. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:09, 23 May 2012 (UTC)

The paragraph on lane numbering is inaccurate, suggesting that it's a Southern California specific nomenclature. Even the citation given is to a state source, not a local source, the DMV handbook teaches lane numbering to any 15 year old applying for a permit, and any police officer in the state can tell you how lanes are numbered. It's true that in areas where there are few lanes, there's no reason for people to refer to numbers.

As an aside, it's legitimate to refer to this as California English, since it's dictated by the CADOT and by definition differs from other state standards (WA is the opposite), most states have no standard, and the DOT has no standard.

I'm moving it from Southern CA to the general area for freeway nomenclature. Although technically lane numbering is not limited to freeways. Hagrinas (talk) 15:56, 20 July 2013 (UTC)

Worst article ever?[edit]

Most insubstantial and useless article ever? 09:55, 15 September 2007 (UTC) I totally agree, I've lived in three states and most of America will agree that California and many other states simply don't have an accent. Sure, the surfer "dialect" originated in California, but absolutely no accent exists in more than 1% of the population in many states. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:52, 15 May 2009 (UTC)

I agree, this article is ridiculous. Regional slang does not constitute a dialect. Nor does a slight accent. The nation has become far too homogenous and mediated by television and other forms of mass media for it to make sense to speak of such a strong regional difference for California English. This article is wishful thinking. Rlitwin (talk) 18:30, 26 May 2009 (UTC)
This is a pretty terrible article. That said, there are serious things to say about California English as a subtype of Western U.S. English (it's different from, say, Utah English, another Western subtype), and sociolinguists such as Penny Eckert at Stanford do serious research on it. However, California itself isn't a linguistically uniform dialect region; this article really should focus on whatever dialect sociolinguists refer to as the California dialect, not all linguistic features that may be found somewhere within California. AJD (talk) 01:23, 29 May 2009 (UTC)
Then let's see if we can rewrite the article accordingly. I'd start by weeding out the stuff about slang. It could have a separate article, California Slang, if someone cared to write it. Rlitwin (talk) 22:25, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Worst article ever? I'm sure I could find at least a dozen articles about the dietary habits of obscure cartoon characters if you need some perspective. California English may not be Gullah, but it is also not the most standard American English (that would be Omaha, Nebraska). Whether the dialect is California or Pacific or western is something I'd love to see a credible source of, but it's not absurd to have the article, even if just to indicate that this dialect is not particularly marked and is pretty much just standard american english. (talk) 07:31, 29 August 2012 (UTC)

This should be two articles[edit]

Nearly all of the content on this page is either about features of Northern California English or of Southern California English. The page itself is a strong argument that there are two distinct dialects here. Most of the phonological material is on a vowel-shift that is referred to on its original page as the "Northern California Shift". Lexical features are subdivided into Northern phenomena and Southern phenomena. The article doesn't provide any evidence that Northern Californians speak more like Southern Californians than they do like, say, Oregonians, and so there's no grounds for grouping the two dialects into a single article. Several other articles that link to the page employ constructions such as "southern [[California English]]" (for example, English_phonology#Phonemes). I propose therefore that the article be split into a Northern California English and a Southern California English article. It may be worthwhile also to have a page on differences between the two, just as there is a page on differences between British English and American English.--Atemperman 20:48, 20 October 2007 (UTC)

i agree. although Californians do share ligutisic siliarities. Northern California and southern California are TWO SEPARATE AREAS. in fact the should be two different states!

Since when is California(n) English a "dialect"?[edit]

I think that this very first assertion in the article is incorrect. As I understand it, a dialect is a variant of a language which, while it is understandable to other speakers of that language, contains significant unique elements. In no way does what passes for English in California constitute a dialect. This should be stricken from the article, which should serve to further diminish whatever importance this mish-mosh of an article has. Basically, it's a collection of language trivia, not a description of anything of linguistic importance. +ILike2BeAnonymous (talk) 21:09, 30 December 2007 (UTC)

So you're saying that California English has no distinctive features? —Tamfang (talk) 22:20, 19 November 2008 (UTC)
Agreed. Calling it a "dialect" seems like nonsense to me. More like a few phonetic variations. Wikidemon (talk) 11:42, 24 November 2008 (UTC)
Using that criterion, there would be really few, if any "dialects" of American English at all, since most Americans can understand other Americans with little or no difficulty. Some varieties of American English, such as that spoken by native inhabitants of New York City, may be irritating to listen to, while others, such as what is spoken by some in the rural South, may sound "funny," but even in those cases, usually there is little trouble for any native American English speaker in understand what is being said. (talk) 21:58, 18 December 2012 (UTC)
A "dialect" is just a variety of a language—the way people in a particular region use the language. AJD (talk) 22:11, 25 November 2008 (UTC)
i agree, dialect at this stage is still quite a stretch, but i disagree that its "just a few phonetic variations"; many linguists find that california english is establishing its own identity and will continue to diverge from GA. MattTabarnaknaytev (talk) 19:31, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
I agree. I've studied languages extensively and speak 4 foreign languages including 2 variants of German. California has an accent and regional slang but no dialect, because even people in California do not understand the slang. An accent refers to different pronunciation, but a dialect refers to different vocabulary and grammar. The majority of these "examples" are slang because they are circumstantial and not standard. For instance, "I'm gonna hit the beach" (west coast) and "I'm down the shore" (East coast/NJ/PA) applies only to that situation. "Beach" and "shore" are used exactly the same by both sides of the US in other circumstances. A dialect is largely unintelligible to people who don't speak it, for example Swiss German and High German. True German speakers may understand 40% of any of the 26 Swiss German dialects. For example in High German, "I'm going shopping" could be "Ich gehe einkaufen," but a Swiss dialect would say "I gang gö shoppe." Same with "Hier bin ich noch nie gewesen" becomes dialect "Do bini nonia gsi." The amount of variation is astounding, meaning they are dialects and not merely accents. (talk) 22:05, 17 September 2011 (UTC)

Unverified but true[edit]

Don't delete the section on freeway nomenclature. It is absolutely correct. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:09, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

Seconded.RaynDrahps (talk) 02:22, 22 August 2012 (UTC)


Oops, I am terribly embarrassed. I wrongly corrected "The most populous of the United States ...", because I forgot to notice that the United States was being referred to as a collective group of states, not as just one entity. Sorry. Good job Binksternet. (talk) 04:11, 19 May 2008 (UTC)

--I deleted Long Beach as being part of SoCal's "South Bay". Long Beach is never considered "South Bay" here. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:12, 20 January 2010 (UTC)


Should there be a list of the different words or usage of words like gay, retard, emo, and so on. (Recharge330 (talk) 15:39, 5 June 2008 (UTC))

California English is seen by many in other US regions that we're so affluent, we speak "Yupplish" or a kind of English associated with Yuppies, a socioeconomic class between rich and middle-class who work in white-collar professions and Californian words are a "Yuppiefied" English dialect. Not all Californians live in a "Yuppie" lifestyle, but the Los Angeles/SoCal and NoCal/San Fran. bay areas are filled with images of their residents are generally speaking most likely to be depicted as "yuppies" who speak in fast, energetic, trendy, youthful, liberal and professional terms. Californian English may well have a larger share of upper-middle class speakers, but be in mind there are alot more working-class and low-income residents in California. + (talk) 05:49, 26 July 2008 (UTC)
Interesting. Citations or anecdotal? Rlitwin (talk) 22:26, 4 June 2009 (UTC)


"Southern Californians rarely refer to the South as SoCal, where as Northerners are more likely to use both abbreviations without any derogatory connotations." I live in Northern California (Oakland to be precise) and the use of the abbreviations "Norcal" and "SoCal" is frowned upon. In fact, it is seen as a shibboleth for those who are not from the area. This is unfortunately original research, and thus inadmissible in an actual edit, but if anyone can help correct this error with admissible support, I'd appreciate it. (talk) 19:16, 30 July 2008 (UTC)

It's also wrong that Southern Californians rarely refer to their own region as SoCal, I hear it all the time. JuJube (talk) 23:14, 30 July 2008 (UTC)
I also live in Southern California and hear and read "SoCal" a lot. However, I've never heard Southern Californians use "NoCal" or "NorCal" in any way that is derrogatory toward Northern California or Northern Californians.Seashinegirl (talk) 00:53, 15 September 2008 (UTC)
Yeah, i hear SoCal and NorCal used all the time, rarely as a derogatory. He's thinking of "cali"; that is frowned upon MattTabarnaknaytev (talk) 19:09, 28 July 2009 (UTC)
What is the significance of slang terms like these to an article on California English, if there is such a thing? Rlitwin (talk) 22:27, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
i dont think these terms belong here either. i think brought it up cause of the whole "sacra" thing. i dont see how abbreviations for regions should be in here, unlike say, regional variations in grammar, which would be true to a dialect. they should be moved to their respective region's pages. MattTabarnaknaytev (talk) 00:07, 1 August 2009 (UTC)


"Northern Californians refer to Sacramento the state capital, as "Sac", "Sacto", "Sactown", "Sacra" (by the Chicano community), and various other nicknames." Yeah.. Where is this happening? In some Midwesterner's mind? Come on now. No one says that. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:33, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

I have lived in Sacramento and yes, many locals call it "Sac". The historic downtown is fondly known as "Old Sac." I have occasionally heard "Sacto". Perhaps more interesting, linguistically, is the pronunciation of "Sacramento." It is always "Sacramenno" (no "t"), except among Spanish speakers of course, who use the Spanish pronunciation. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:17, 27 January 2009 (UTC)
These are slang terms. What is the significance to an article on a California English dialect, if there is such a thing? RlitwinRlitwin (talk) 22:28, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
There are deleted entries on the article discussed the closer speech patterns of Northern California (esp. north of Sacramento) with the Pacific Northwest, Upper Midwest and New England states. The Inland Empire and desert regions are referred to as the "Desert Southwest", and have more of a Texan, Southwestern and Midwestern influences in local speech. The Sierras and other mountain areas have a history of Appalachian and Mid-Atlantic settlers. + (talk) 06:37, 1 March 2010 (UTC)

original research?[edit]

Does the notion of "California English" actually have currency among linguists? If so, the article doesn't indicate that or offer any support for the claim. What is written here looks like original research to me; if we can't show that this is a real concept among linguists (or other language experts), we shouldn't invent it here and we should remove this article. Thoughts? csloat (talk) 05:23, 2 July 2009 (UTC)

California English[edit]

I think this is a valuable article, and should remain. And even though a lot of people do not realize it, there is a "California Accent". And many of us can recognize it. The problem is probably that because of the vast quantity of entertainment and news that comes out of California, most people simply do not recognize it as such when they hear it. And a lot of people simply do not recognize accents and speech patterns unless they are very distinct, like South-East USA. And when you think about it, how many people can recognize a Canadian accent? It is there, it is real, but most people would not recognize it. Mushrom (talk) 17:43, 11 September 2009 (UTC)

Valspeak is absolutely distinct from any other American English dialect, the authentic sound of Southern California in pop culture. The center of Valspeak has been in L.A.'s San Fernando Valley beginning in the 1970s', but has been spoken by teens who grew up to be young adults living in the South Bay, Los Angeles and Orange County communities. + (talk) 08:32, 21 February 2010 (UTC)

Penelope Eckert and the California Vowel Shift[edit]

The inclusion of Ms. Eckert's research as a general quality of California accents strikes me as a rather unfortunate mistake. Her research has centered around 10-13 year old girls who are apparently displaying a new pronunciation of certain vowel sounds, but I've neither seen nor heard of any research that would indicate that this is related to a larger vowel shift across California. The way it's presented in this article, however, makes it seem that Californians as a whole are using such shifted vowels. Please listen to the NPR interview linked at Ms. Eckert's site for more information, which you can also find here: -- KuriosD (talk) 19:37, 17 September 2009 (UTC)

here: in the 'chicano' paragraph, it says that the same shifts found in the north can be found in southern california. link also provides an explanation to why they centre around the youth. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:28, 4 October 2009 (UTC)

California drawl[edit]

I took a paragraph out, one which described the "California drawl". It had no references. Before deleting, I looked for some support from the linguistics literature, and found no scholarly analysis of the drawl. Spreading my net wider I found a number of uses of the term in fiction and non-fiction, but none of the uses defined the drawl, especially in the way that it was carefully defined here. I deleted the paragraph for WP:Original research. Binksternet (talk) 16:29, 26 January 2010 (UTC)

If you referring to Midwestern and Southern "Drawl" sounds, how about a connection with Oklahoma and Kansas? The Dust bowl migration of the so-called Okies introduced the Southern accent to the west coast in the 1920's and 30's before the migration ended in World War II. This localized dialect is sometimes called "Kernekie", merged the terms Kern County and Okie, and can be heard in the San Joaquin Valley. + (talk) 08:30, 21 February 2010 (UTC)

I agree with some others that this isn't a particularly good article. Also, in the Phonetics section, there is no mention at all of the tendency to pronounce 'a' sounds in foreign words as if they were 'o' sounds. E.g. Milan pronounce like 'Milon' and 'Moulin Rouge' like 'Moulon Rouge'.MarkRae (talk) 13:28, 20 July 2015 (UTC)

Bomb-Balm divergence[edit]

Though I can't find a source on this, I know from lifelong experience that both northern and southern Californians pronounce the /l/ in words like palm, balm, etc. Can anyone help out on that? Samhuddy (talk) 22:42, 31 January 2010 (UTC)

I came across something regarding /l/ in palm,balm, etc in Californian speech a while ago, but cant find it at them moment... I myself use a slight /l/. I must find that file, and go ask someone to say the words so I can hear it myself. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:12, 12 February 2010 (UTC)
Yes, I have heard people in San Fran pronounce the /l/ in words like calm. I personally have always distinguished bomb and balm, not by pronouncing the /l/ but by using the same vowels as in cot and caught, respectively. But I'm from Tucson, not CA. Benwing (talk) 04:56, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

Apostrophic vowels in terminal syllables[edit]

Something I first noticed in younger Californian and Hawaiian English speakers in the last 20 or 30 years, and now I run into among relatively younger others, is the lengthening of terminal syllables that traditionally have been suppressed. I'm not talking about just stressing terminal elements of words (e.g., what-EVER). I'm referring to making did-unt out of didn't, wood-in out of wooden, would-unt out of wouldn't, etc.--in other words, articulating a final syllable's vowel that the pronunciation guide in Webster's New World College Dictionary renders with just an apostrophe. I don't know what the formal linguistic term for this phenomenon might be, but if it has been discussed in the literature, it may be worth including in this article. Wbkelley (talk) 17:13, 1 April 2010 (UTC)

In this preview for "How we talk: American regional English today", i find exactly what you're talking about, via the Allyn Partin Hernandez bit. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:43, 2 June 2010 (UTC)

Original research etc.[edit]

There appears to be a lot of original research in this article, as well as junk that's probably true but of questionable encyclopedicness, like the whole section on freeway nomenclature. Examples of stuff that I question are:

  • "Norcal" or "NoCal"? Maybe this is an LA thing, but sure as hell not in SF.
  • "over the hill, up the hill" etc. as a Bay Area thing? I understand the reason for these terms but I lived in SF all through the 90's and never heard these terms.

More basically, I'm a linguist and I think a lot of the stuff about California speech is very questionable. For example, much of the stuff that's supposedly "particular" to California speech, e.g. raising of vowels before "ng", near monophthongization of /ou/ and /ei/, the cot-caught merger, the merry-marry-Mary merger, are actually characteristic of the speech of large parts of the U.S. Furthermore, as pointed out by an earlier comment, much of the supposed "California vowel shift" is actually very incipient and not characteristic of most speakers. Some of the vowel movements are present in many speakers, e.g. the fronting of /u/, some are characteristic of certain speakers (e.g. the fronting of /ou/ is traditionally associated with surfers), but many of them appear to be present only in certain groups of young speakers. It's true that sound changes in process tend to be visible in younger speakers but not older ones, but that still doesn't mean that all changes characteristic of some young speakers are necessarily in the process of being generalized. Benwing (talk) 05:09, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

Are you saying you've never heard the term "NorCal"? I find that hard to believe, if you lived in SF for an extended period of time. "NorCal" and "SoCal" are probably used more by younger speakers, but I'd be surprised if any Bay Area resident hadn't at least heard those terms.

The over the hill/up the hill thing is more questionable. Where I grew up in the Berkeley area people would say "over the hill" sometimes to refer to the suburbs on the other side of the Berkeley/Oakland Hills ("Lamorinda") but I've never heard either of these used the way they're described in the article. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:02, 11 January 2011 (UTC)

I grew up in the Bay Area (80s and 90s) and never heard "NorCal" or "SoCal" until I moved to the East Coast. People from the Northeast U.S., not just Southern California, used those terms. Things may have changed in the past 10 years, but that would be hella fast ( :) ) --Atemperman (talk) 05:44, 17 May 2011 (UTC)
In the 90's, "SoCal" was used occasionally, but only in a joking way, and it was perceived as an LA thing. The opposite was claimed sometimes to be "NoCal" but this was even less common and even more of a joke if/when it was ever heard. "NorCal" didn't exist at all. Possibly these terms existed in the suburbs, but not in the city. Benwing (talk) 05:08, 14 February 2013 (UTC)

I've been in "SoCal" for thirty years (LA and San Diego) and have never heard anyone say "NorCal" or "NoCal". Most people just say "up north". I've only heard "SoCal" in advertising, mostly in print, since it's an obvious way to save space, but never in regular conversation. Another variant, "The Southland", I've never heard anyone but LA area newscasters say. (talk) 03:30, 21 February 2013 (UTC)

  • Speakers in the Greater Los Angeles area often quickly slur vowel sounds, making certain syllables sound longer and flow closer.[6]

is this serious? not only is this a disaster from a linguistic point of view [none of those descriptions would fly in any linguistic paper], but the citation is to tvtropes whos accent pages are even worst than some of the things people get away with on wikipedia. And while i do see where Benwing is coming from, i would presume a fellow linguist to know that its the collection of all these qualities that separate this region from others. --Sisgreenflag (talk) 19:19, 3 July 2013 (UTC)

"Phonology" section is too technical, very difficult to understand![edit]

The Phonology section looks very nice, technical, and seems good for those who can understand it. Personally, I learned a little bit of that stuff years ago, and it looks like Greek to me now. As a Californian who wants to understand the differences between our own and other's pronunciation, this section was very disappointing! Can someone add a simplified description to it? Perhaps more examples for us to contrast? This would be extremely appreciated. Thank you very much! -- (talk) 05:42, 19 March 2012 (UTC)

Citation for existence of California Dialect[edit]

I don't have access to the full text of the Buchholtz paper cited as the source for the articles leading assertion that there is a *dialect* of *California English*, but the abstract makes it clear this article is the dialectal boundaries within California. As such it seems an unlikely candidate for demonstrating that there is a dialect of California English distinct from standard american english. An article on California English may make sense even if it doesn't meet the standard definition of a dialect, given in the [dialect] article as "A dialect is distinguished by its vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation (phonology, including prosody). Where a distinction can be made only in terms of pronunciation, the term accent is appropriate, not dialect." So there are two questions here: 1) is California the relevant distinction, instead of being within a larger geographic region or Northern and Southern California differing from each other more than they differ from their neighbors in other states, and 2) is it a dialect as opposed to an accent and some trivia about highway naming? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:45, 29 August 2012 (UTC)


"In 1958, essayist Clifton Fadiman pointed out that Northern California is the only place besides England where the word chesterfield is used as a synonym for sofa or couch"

This is common in Canadian English. CüRlyTüRkeyTalkContribs 13:03, 16 December 2012 (UTC)

Most Americans would probably think of a formerly popular brand of cigarettes if they heard the word "Chesterfield." Of course, many of the younger generation (even those who smoke) have probably never heard of the Chesterfield brand, so they might be more amenable to thinking of it as at least some kind of furniture. (talk) 22:02, 18 December 2012 (UTC)

Add a counter example to the phonetic examples[edit]

I was born, raised, and have lived in the south bay area my entire life. And currently I am in the process of completing a civil engineering graduate degree at a well known bay area university. The phonetic examples in the article, really make no-sense to a native Californian because they are apparently written for a Northeastern audience that understand what the counter phonetic sounds like.

Also note that there are differences in word bundles, for example my use of "no-sense", is a phrase we know is considered rude by our transplanted northeastern coworkers, but is commonly used by Californians to simply say, 'I do not understand'. Granite07 (talk)


I'm not a linguist (and I imagine 99.99% of readers aren't) so it would help if there were some examples, especially when the article is talking about things like vowel shifts. Most people also don't understand the different pronunciation symbols...I realize that these are the tools used to express differences of dialect it's just that they are meaningless to almost everyone. I think that not only should there be an emphasis on accuracy but also on communicating the information to a layperson. Liz Read! Talk! 23:45, 7 September 2013 (UTC)


I am a native of the bay area and I have always considered g-dropping, across the entire socioeconomic spectrum, to be one of the defining characteristics of the Ca accent. However I can't find any references to this. Androsynth (talk) 19:05, 21 May 2017 (UTC)

Androsynth: I wonder if you're referring to the sound change from /ɪŋ/ to /n/. It would be nice to find more sources about this. Wolfdog (talk) 14:00, 15 July 2017 (UTC)

Disambiguation: California English the Journal[edit]

There should be a wikipedia entry for the academic journal California English. And a disambiguation link for this page. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:31, 12 July 2017 (UTC)

Not sure if I see the connection. The journal seems to be about English education, not English dialectology. Wolfdog (talk) 14:12, 15 July 2017 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

Hello fellow Wikipedians,

I have just modified one external link on California English. Please take a moment to review my edit. If you have any questions, or need the bot to ignore the links, or the page altogether, please visit this simple FaQ for additional information. I made the following changes:

When you have finished reviewing my changes, you may follow the instructions on the template below to fix any issues with the URLs.

As of February 2018, "External links modified" talk page sections are no longer generated or monitored by InternetArchiveBot. No special action is required regarding these talk page notices, other than regular verification using the archive tool instructions below. Editors have permission to delete these "External links modified" talk page sections if they want to de-clutter talk pages, but see the RfC before doing mass systematic removals. This message is updated dynamically through the template {{sourcecheck}} (last update: 15 July 2018).

  • If you have discovered URLs which were erroneously considered dead by the bot, you can report them with this tool.
  • If you found an error with any archives or the URLs themselves, you can fix them with this tool.

Cheers.—InternetArchiveBot (Report bug) 18:22, 11 January 2018 (UTC)


The code-switching English linguistic trend, Spanglish, is not mentioned directly in the article, although Chicano English is mentioned. Spanglish only appears as a link at the bottom. Spanglish is a newer term, awareness of its existence was increased by Adam Sandler's movie titled Spanglish_(film) Spanglish is connected to Chicano English, and with the steadily increasing Spanish influence in California English, it should be referenced directly [1] Jason Hall UA (talk) 22:42, 25 March 2018 (UTC)Jason Hall UA (talk) 00:58, 30 April 2018 (UTC)


Surfer Dude?[edit]

Is the surfer dude accent and actual thing? (talk) 15:04, 6 June 2018 (UTC)