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Debate: Should everyone in the world speak the same language?

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Should everyone in the world speak the same language?

Background and context

Fifty to ninety percent of the world's languages will disappear in the next century, according to the The Rosetta Project. Clearly, a consolidation in languages in the 21st century is predicted. [1] People have often been thinking about how difficult it is to have different countries speaking different languages. Some people think it would just be easier to have one universal language, the classic comeback being that this would not be practical nor realistic. There is also a saying stating

How many languages you know - that many times you are a person.

But is this really the case? Does the knowledge of more than one language really develop an individual personally? Does the fact that there exist more than one language even bring something positive? Should measures be taken to slow down the already happening consolidation of languages? Should ancient languages, for example, be preserved?


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Communication: Would a universal language improve communication between people?

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Yes

  • Universal language would eliminate translation error. If everyone in the world spoke the same language, communication among us would be much easier and we all could express ourselves much clearer. Misunderstanding between languages would be prevented. Sometimes translators can be wrong as some word cannot be translated directly.


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No

People would become lazy and bored of 1 language because they like to learn new things like math and science and english. yes english is a good language to learn. no french.

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Culture: Would an universal language be beneficial culturally?

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Yes

  • Universal language could exist alongside other languages. Everyone in the world has the right to speak their native and cultural language but they should also have a 2nd language that could be used internationally. Therefore a person should keep his birth language but learn another language that is known throughout the world for better communication globally.
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No

I cant think of any good reasons but here's one anyways. If people speak different languages, they would have a bond with their families and can tell secrets to their friends without other people hearing them because that would be wrong.

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Would choice of universal language be an easy one?

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Yes

  • Most spoken language should be adopted as the universal language. It would be simple deciding which language to get everyone to learn; the most spoken one. This is, only somewhat arguably, English. More people in more countries speak and are taught English.
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No

It is impractical to have everyone learn just one language because you know there are like a zillion people in the world and everyone loves their one language and stuff and they get really protective like England or Wales- wait they speak the same language.. right? anyways if you learn one language it would be good.


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Would the adoption of an universal language be simple and quick?

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Yes

  • Practical benefits would compel adoption of universal language. It may take a while for everyone to get used to the change, but after a few years, everyone would get used to it. It is to be expected that the prospect of being able to communicate with anyone in the world through one language would be so attractive, that people would immediately begin to learn it on a mass scale.
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No

You know some people like me are so dumb and we dont know how to learn new languages so like we will take so many years until the sun dies and the moon reigns and stuff and all we should do is watch gossip girl and one tree hill like smart people. 


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Economy: Would the universal language be beneficial economically?

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Yes

  • Universal language ends constraint to free trade and workforce movement. In order to accomplish this, an organization should be able to liason with its environment to expand its market. For a successful implementation it is required to understand the customer better. Through communication, the link between the product and customer is enabled, thus allowing greater attainability of profit. Through a common language organizations will be able to reach out and sell the product globally. Speaking the same language all over the world would promote more liberal trade among nations and also spur workforce movement, since it will be far easier to understand each other, which would eventually result in equality, and hence peaceful world.
  • Universal language would remove cost of translation services. Every benefits come with some sacrifices. If we don't carry out the "global language" just for the sake of the linguists and language teachers, the world will never be able to develop. Also, good linguists and good language teachers are expected to be rather intelligent people, they would arguably adapt quickly to some other activities.


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No

  • Implementing one universal language would lead to a job loss. The introduction of one, universal language would arguably make the job of many people like linguists, language teachers and students expandable.


See also

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