Things to Ponder : Malaysian English, should be standardize or not?




1. Pillai – There has been no concerted effort to establish an endonormative model for Standard Malaysian English pronunciation.
2. Schneider’s Dynamic Five Phase Model of the Evolution of New Englishes (2003: 243)



English is now a medium of communication worldwide. In Malaysia, English has been commonly used
1. In the urban city
2. In business field
3. Conversation with foreigner(particularly with diplomat, ambassador from different countries)
4. Certain places ( in airport, tourism hotspot)
5. Service field (F&B,, Beauty, Fashion, Sales)
6.In most of the established companies (As those established company would most likely to expand internationally or have international employees, such as oil & gas field, electricity, general motor field)



GENERALLY, it could be seen that Malaysian English usage has been divided to 2 dimension of English.
1. English for International Communication
2. English for Intra-Malaysian, Ethics Communication


When conversing with foreigner, the English used contain less marked features.
Marked features (note: not all the examples are here)
1. particle ‘lah’ , ‘kan’, ‘liao’ , ‘lo’ usage
2. direct translations of English to BM, BC
3. nativited intonation, speech rhythm
4. pronunciation (Mahir & Jarjis, n.d.)
5. Malaysian colloquial phrase or is it Singapore colloquial? (lim beh is sleepy, don’t be like Lim Beh)

As those less marked features is only understand by those who has little, or moderate understanding of Malay and Mandarin spoken language in Malaysia. The used of less marked feature also exist in academic field, particularly when student wants to has presentation in the class. However, when conversing among Malaysia, esp during informal context, speakers tend to use Malaysian English (with marked features) to show solidarity and as an identity marker.



Now, the problem is that , according to Pillai (The Monophthong & Diphthongs of Malaysian English), there has been no concerted effort to establish an endornormative model for Standard Malaysian English pronunciation. Malaysian is currently using the model of RP as target instead of reference model. Meaning, in term of pronunciation, Malaysians educator has refer to RP as standard, instead of a reference.
Which in fact is less feasible. New generation in Malaysia has slowly incorporate American English in daily conversation. This include the engagement of
1. certain American phrases,
2. intonation
3. vocabulary



With these consideration in regards, should Malaysian English established Malaysian own set of Pronunciation? With RP is reference model rather than Target.

If Malaysian English should have it’s own authority establishment away from native English.
I feel like if there is Pustake Bahasa Malaysia to established Bahasa Melayu in Malaysia. Bahasa Melayu in the official language of Malaysia. There should be some authority institution to established English in Malaysia (or else, the English educator in Malaysia would continue to use British English, RP as the standard English. )

Another idea of FYP in term of Malaysian English Pronunciation: Staccato Effect


on on on

Staccato is Italian for detached (the opposite of legato ‘bound, tied’) and is used to describe ‘a special manner of performing musical phrase without slurring the notes together, articulationg each separately. The staccato actually shorten the value of each note as written by the insertion of a minute pause. These 3 aspects of musical staccato
– Separate articulation
– Shortening of notes
– Insertion of pauses
Should be borne in mind in the following discussion of how the meaning of this musical term maybe transferred to features of pronunciation.

Extracted from Foley, J (1988). New English: The case of Singapore. Singapore: Singapore University Press. Retrieved from




I have found out that the staccato effect of Malaysian English is due to the stressing of every single syllabe in English words. This is especially happenin Chinese native speaker, as they is either

1. Absence of stressing features in Mandarin


2. Stressing on every single word, as every single words has their own lexical meaning, in contrast to English.


Even though, that this book produce in the year of 1988, has been published for 27 years until 2015. I still find it an interesting topic for research.


The reason for this is
1. The staccato effect still happen, perhaps with less staccato, but it still happen.

2. The staccato effect generally reduce as the Chinese native speaker grow up and gain increasing exposure to English medium in term of Speaking and Listening. But that is still a necessary to teach on this.

3. The staccato effect has living for a timespan of at least 27 years. With the explicit awareness from Researcher and lecturer in Phonology and phonetic field. Still, the staccato effect still happen after 27 years.

4. Thus, there should be a research on how to reduce the staccato effect in Language teaching classroom. Perhaps a communicative Language theory to teach students? Which is also a new approach to teach student?

A brief insight into the World of Blogging (Malaysian Context)


Hi, to whoever read this. This is my academic blog. and I am publishing my outline of speech which i couldnt delivered entirely because of the 5 mins time constraints. I have so much to talk. Hence, I decided to let my research of 3 days 2 night to publishes here. …..

The Original Content started here. 

A Brief Insight into the World of Blogging


  • History of the coinage word “Blogging”
    • In the late 1990, Jorn Barger- weblog (Web site + Logging)
    • 1999, Peter Merholz- blog (for short) David L., Blogging, 2011.
  • Blogs- allow anyone with sufficient level of mastery in Information Communication and technologies (ICT) to write and publish text, picture, video or audio the post.

Main Idea 1: Hobby VS Career

  • Everyone start from hobby blogger
  • Share food recipe, personal open diary, experience.
  • Non-technical user
  • Care about readership
  • Career
  • Care about income, thus readership
  • Google AdSense, paid post, sponsored item
  • Niche: Specific topic (beauty, education, sport, travel, IT gadget)
  • So many advertisers –spend millions of dollar to advertise on these commercial niches.
  • Target audience
  • Written precisely to you
  • Article conversational
  • Marketing & Promotional skills
  • SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
  • Business card
  • Social media account: Instagram, Facebook, Google+
  • Subscribe
  • Similarity: Blogger community
  • The Butterfly Project

– Who has help to raise a lot of beauty, fashion bloggers in Malaysia.

-Tammy Lim who blog in

– Recently been crowned at Top 10 Female blogger Malaysia by a magazine known as “Top 10 Malaysia”.

  • Make reader into thinking most bloggers are combination of both.

“One that is written by an individual with a passion for the product /service is likely to draw more readership than one with a bland corporate persona.”

Main Idea 2: Blog VS other mass media

  • Firsthand experience with emotion (Regulation blogs in Malaysia)
  • Blogger has experienced the first hand reports from ongoing events, whether wars, natural disasters, crimes or events.
  • It is also very subjective that bloggers chose to blog subjectively based on their interest.
  • Examples
  • Iraq war (The Baghdad civilians and US soldiers)
  • The inhabitants of New Orleans – during hurricane Katrina.
  • The inhabitants of people to stay in Terengganu who blogged during the annually reported year end flood.
  • Comply to editorial policy
  • Mass media (television, radio, newspaper)-aim at public- contend with the –

Editorial policies that were generally based on the ideology

  • UMNO owe Utusan Melayu, New Straits Time
  • MCA owe The Star-pro-goverment
  • Advertiser
  • Printing Presses and Publications Act (PPPA) 1984
  • All printing presses require a license granted by the Home Affairs Minister, renewed every year.
  • Absolute discretion-granting and revocation of licenses
  • The Edge Financial Daily – The Edge Weekly-suspension of printing permits -3 months- controversial 1MDB reports.

Main Idea 3: Law regulations for Malaysian bloggers

  • Laws that apply to every Malaysian.
  • ISA (Internal Security Act) 1960
  • Famous socio-political blogger- Raja Petra Kamaruddin- detained
  • Insulting Malays , Islam
  • Official Secret Act 1972
  • Defamation Act 1957
  • Sedition Act 1948
  • Cyber laws of Malaysia – 11 laws that involved- applicable to any online user in Malaysia. (telemedicine, Digital signature, copyright, online payment)
    • Computer Crime Acts 1997- hacking, virus attack
  • Communication and Multimedia Act 1998
  • Prohibit content that is “indecent, obscene, false, menacing, or offensive in character with intent to annoy abuse, threaten or harass any person”.
  • Sexual experience, homosexuality.
  • Besides, according to Ahmad, Mohammad and Hassan in Regulating blog in Malaysia (2011), Malaysian bloggers -self censorship, using moral conscience and common sense as their guide, and the social community knowledge of the Malaysian cultural.
  • Generally, no any specific laws that is targeted to blogger.
  • Unless, talk about sex, race, religion, politic issue.


As a blogger- want to reach large about of readership, create a better community. Use it for a better community

  • World Food Week 2015, Oct.
  • Like and comment- 1kg of rice, flour, pasta, potatoes


Some of the useful links that you might want to reference


Pulizzi, J. (n.d.). Ultimate Guide to BLogging. Retrieved from

2. Website: The difference between professional blogging and hobby blogging

3. Book:

Rettberg, J.W. (2009). Blogging: Digital Media and Society Series. Cambridge:Polity Stress.

4. Book:

Hudson, D.L. (2011). Blogging:Second Edition. New York: Chelsea House.

5. Online article:

Ooi, Y.M. (n.d.). Blogging thrives in Malaysia. International Association of Business Communicator. Retrieved from

How human acquiring language


Disclaimer: Please bear in mind that this idea posted here is just an creative and daring hypothesis to create boudless creativity of human mind.It’s not credible and without any support of empirical study. Well, It’s logically acceptable, and could serve as an idea for research anyway =D

Instead of saying how Human acquire language, we should ask How children acquire language.

Well, the official answer from my lecture note is that:

Through exposure into human speaking environment. The brain of child are programmed to follow specific grammar of a language that a child exposed to early in life. The process of acquiring a language is an interplay of biology and environmental factors. There is one device knowns as Language Acquisition Device (LAD) for understanding the principles and organzation common to all language. And the basic structure of a language that is present in every human language in the world is known as Universal Grammar (coined by Noam Chomsky)

Universal Grammar is a set of grammar rules that are hard-wired into brain. It is manifest without being taught.

For instance, All language has

1. Noun, verb, adjective.

2. A child learn the meaning of “I, you, father,mother, table” without being taught. They simply known is. When they were born in this world, They just have to acquire the symbol of the meaning in specific language that is conventional in a society. Said you born in a Society of Chinese society, you are given exposure the meaning of “I” is 我。

in Malay-speaking society, you are given exposure the meaning of “I” is “saya”

what I mean is there were some basic words that you cant dissect, and those word you naturally acquire it, the symbol of the meaning without being taught. (I suppose this is what LAD means)

However, I still have a few doubt about Universal Grammar and LAD.

1. So far, the linguistic understand how one acquire language by studying the process of children pick up language. Why not we research it from another prespertive. LIke how human first come out with language, that has rules and symbol to govern the usage?

Switching imcompetency


I am glad that I actually start with this …erm….blog about academic thing =). I treally help me a lot when I need to recall something. because I mostly jotted down my new founding here =)

Have you ever come across come some L2 speaker who can’t speak their L2 correctly?

For eg.

1. Some Hong Kong cantonese speaker who speak mandarin. (giving the condiion that they are constantly exposed to mandarin but do not speak and write.)

mandarin- Cantonese                   Mandarin                               utterances by Cantonese Speaker                                                             Description
一小时         Yi1 xiao3 shi2           Yat4 xiu2 xi3                               Yi1 xiao3 shi3                                                                                     Using the accent of                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Cantonese for the                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3rd word.
牛肉面         Niu2 rou4 mian4      Ngau3 yuk3 mian3                       Niu2 yuk4 mian4                                                                              2nd character is                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    projected in Cantonese
还有             Hai2 you3                    Zhong3 yao2                                   Hai2 yao3
手提电话    Shou3 ti2 dian4 hua4 Sao2 thai3 dian3 wa2                Shou3 ti3 dian4 hua4                                                            Using the accent of                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cantonese for the2nd character.


Note: the number at the end of the letter above indicate the tone in Chinese Han yu Pin yin.



another thing that I found out is that the error in consonant sound in English does not reply in suku kata, but it is due to lack of knowledge about phonetic and phonology in English. For example:

egg vs eight

sheep vs ship (vowel error)

walk vs war


(Heuven, Broerse & Pacilly, 2011 )

And anothper phenomena that I found out is that some L2 speaker of English can still pronounce a foreign langage in a way that cannot be distinguished from that of born- and- bread native speaker. These advanced L2 speakers are usually proffesors or lecturers in English at the level of univeristy or teacher training college that can speak equal or even better than some of the native English speakers.


this so far never happen in Malaysia from what I have observed but will still keep looking for the evidence of it. =) 

The 100 books that you should read.


Retrieved from WX’s facebook.

The BBC came up with this list of 100 books.
Apparently the average number of books from this list that people have read is 6.

1) Look at the list and put an ‘X’ after those you have read.
2) Add a ‘+’ to the ones you LOVE.
3) Tally your total at the bottom.

1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen (X)
2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte (X)+
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling (X)+
5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee (X)+
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte (X)
8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman (X)+
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens (X)+
11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott (X)
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien (X)
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger (X)
20 Middlemarch – George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchel
22 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House – Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll (X)
30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame (X)+
31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis(X)+
34 Emma – Jane Austen
35 Persuasion – Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis (X)+
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hussein (X) +
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden (X)+
40 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
41 Animal Farm – George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown (X)
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meany – John Irving
45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding
50 Atonement – Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel (X)+
52 Dune – Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth (X)
56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov (X)
63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hard
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding (X)+
69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
72 Dracula – Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses – James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal – Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession – AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web – E.B. White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom (X)+
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (X)+
90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton (X)+
91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery (X)
93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
94 Watership Down – Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet – William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl (X)+
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo