Created By: FearOfTheUnknown on October 31, 2011 Last Edited By: XFllo on March 31, 2013
Troped

Translation by Volume

Speaking your language loudly and slowly in an attempt to overcome a language barrier

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Oh yes! Picard's fluent in yelling at people. This is the time honoured method of speaking your own language loudly and somewhat slowly to people who don't speak it, in the hopes that they will suddenly understand you.
SF Debris, TNG: "Darmok" review

A person attempts to overcome a Language Barrier by simply speaking loudly and slowly or even shouting, believing that it will somehow work. As if the other person had bad hearing or were deaf, and weren't someone who actually doesn't know the language.

It often involves speaking in conjunction with national stereotypes, frequently some version of Eagle Land of the boorish category to portray an ignorant tourist, bumbling his way around a foreign country. Characters sometimes just meet a person who doesn't speak the same language, not necessarily a tourist. It's a fairly universal approach, not limited to one nation or one language.

Another variant of this trope happens when characters are nice to each other and they genuinely try to understand and communicate, never realizing that it's hopeless. People may mean to be helpful and improve communication but it can come across as condescending.

In all fairness, trying to employ this trope might sometimes work, especially with languages that are partly mutually comprehensible, as for example Slavic languages that often have similar vocabulary and similar grammar. Speaking slowly and clearly allows someone with only a basic understanding of the language to keep up and they might catch some international words or grasp the meaning from gestures.

This trope is very often Played for Laughs as a means of mocking communication and poor foreign language skills. Generally, it will be accompanied by El Spanish O and a lots of Body Language tropes, both in fiction and in Real Life, since this is Truth in Television.


Examples from media

Film - Live Action
  • In Better Off Dead, Lane's father tries to communicate with Monique the exchange student from France:
    Mr. Meyer: ARE YOU ENJOYING YOUR STAY IN OUR TOWN?
  • Rush Hour: Carter, an English speaker, is speaking to Jackie Chan's character for the first time, and Jackie Chan's character does not speak English.
    Carter: DO YOOOU UNDERSTAAAND THE WOOORDS THAT ARE COMIN' OUT OF MY MOOOUTH?
  • Played With in Pulp Fiction: When the hitman Jules psychologically tortures his future victim Brett, he plays with this concept. He's half-infuriated, half-amused that the poor and confused boy answers him several times with only "what?", which leads to this iconic and memetic exchange:
    Jules: What ain't no country I ever heard of! Do they speak English in What?
    Brett: What?
    Jules: ENGLISH, MOTHERFUCKER, DO YOU SPEAK IT?!
  • Along Came Polly: When Rubin and Polly first meet Rubin's parents, they ask the waiter in a rather condescending fashion: "Hi, need big table please - four people - many thanks" with the waiter responding in a bewildered fashion "okay".
  • From Back to the Future franchise: In script Number Two, Marty and Jennifer visit a store clerk in the year 2015. Marty asks for the Timeline-Altering MacGuffin, but the clerk asks, "On what?" After asking a few more times, Marty goes for the direct approach.
    Marty: (very slowly, deliberately) Look, I just want to know how much money the Sports Almanac costs.
    Clerk: (just as deliberately) And I just want to know what format you want? ROM-Cart, ROM-D, Standard-C, Mini-C or Micro-C? Rental, Lease or download? What's your memcap and baud rate? Interface with me, kid. You'll never get by in this world if you can't interface.
    (silence)
    Marty: Uh, right -- good advice.
  • Vicky tries to speak loudly and slowly in Vicky Cristina Barcelona, as she's initially not very good at speaking Spanish or Catala.

Literature
  • Gor: In Savages of Gor, where a Red Savage (Fantasy Counterpart Culture to Native American) of the Dust Leg tribe talks slowly and loudly in his native language to a Beautiful Slave Girl who only speaks Gorean.
    He was speaking to her in Dust Leg, slowly and clearly. "Yes, Master," she whimpered, in Gorean. "Yes, Master." It amused me that the youth, like so many individuals to whom only one language is familiar, so familiar that it seems that all humans must, in one way or another, be conversant with it, seemed to think that the girl must surely understand him if only he would speak slowly enough and with sufficient distinctness.
  • Discworld:
    • In the Discworld GURPS sourcebook, this is a skill called "Shouting At Foreigners". It is an actual skill that can be used instead of a foreign language. Mental/Hard, defaults to Linguistics-4, IQ-6 or HT-6: Many people think that they can get by in any language by speaking loudly, slowly and clearly in their own, or by dredging up a few half-remembered words from old stories and books. On the Disc, this sometimes works.
    • This trope is Granny Weatherwax's default form of communication when dealing with foreigners during the witches' travels in Witches Abroad.
    • Done several times by Lord Rust. [CONTEXT NEEDED]
    • Sergeant Colon did this during his time in Klatch. [CONTEXT NEEDED]
  • America (The Book): America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide To Democracy Inaction is a Satire/Parody/Pastiche of high-school textbooks about the history of American democracy and politics. It references this concept. "Do... you... speak... English?"
  • In the 5th Harry Potter book, Umbridge maliciously speaks to Hagrid in this unpleasant manner in order to make him look dumb and oafish, setting him up so she can fire him later. Hagrid responds in the same manner while trying to communicate what thestrals are, albeit in a confused and would-be helpful manner rather than a malicious one.

Live Action Television
  • In Scrubs, Marco lampshades how absurd it is to Turk, who thinks Marco only speaks Spanish.
    Turk: I'm sorry. But I CAN'T UNDERSTAND YOU.
    Marco: Yeah, well that talking slower and louder thing is not as helpful as you might think.
  • On Arrested Development this tends to be how the Bluths attempt to communicate with the various Spanish-speaking characters.
  • An episode of The Facts of Life had the girls attempting to speak to a Spanish speaking woman very loudly. She does the exact same thing to them, in Spanish.
  • Midsomer Murders: Tom Barnaby once mentions that it used to be all you had to do to be understood by a foreigner. To speak loudly.
  • Played With in Samantha Who?: The main character has amnesia and when she meets up with her friend, the friend starts using this trope, speaking loudly and unnaturally clearly. Another friend quickly berates her, letting her know that Samantha has amnesia but isn't deaf. She is also obviously not a foreigner.
  • QI: When discussing the differences between British and American cuisine, Stephen jokingly asked American guest Rich Hall: "WHAT... DO YOUR PEOPLE... EAT?"
  • In Fawlty Towers, Basil often addresses Manuel, the Spanish waiter and bellboy by shouting at him, along with lots of Gratuitous Spanish (which is as often as not French, Italian or As Long as It Sounds Foreign) and slapstick violence. See this clip.
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation, episode "Darmok": The episode deals with Universal Translator Failure and an encounter with friendly, yet absolutely incomprehensible aliens. Both crews try this approach, speaking slowly and loudly. It arguably slightly works, but both could grasp only very, very little.
  • Lampshaded in an episode of M*A*S*H, when Hawkeye tends to a wounded Korean.
    Hawkeye: Bet-ter? Bet-ter? I've been here all this time, and I still can't speak the language.
    B.J.: (Jokingly) Well, you Americans figure everybody can understand English, lest-you-speak-it-slow-ly-e-nough.
    Hawkeye: Huh?
  • In an episode of Red Dwarf, Lister and the Cat find themselves on a parallel Earth and for some reason believe they are in Bulgaria. They attempt to get by by speaking slowly and clearly and appending "-ski" to all their words, combining it with Bulgarian flavoured El Spanish O.
  • On Friends, Rachel went to meet Ross at the airport. He was returning from a business trip to China and apparently brought back a new Asian girlfriend. Rachel WELCOMES HER IN HER COUNTRY, trying to be cordial and not confused, since Ross was in love with her. Ross's girlfriend Julie actually COMES FROM NEW YORK as well.
  • In The Nanny, when Fran, a Jewish American woman, gets a French boyfriend, her mother speaks loudly and slowly with him.

Stand-up Comedy
  • Eddie Izzard, a British comedian, did a bit about it, where Brits in France would try to order the same foods from home, but speak with greater volume and enunciation.
  • Howie Mandel (back before he did game shows) used this concept in his stand-up routine, asking how we would like it if people did it to us. The punch line being that, when someone did it to him, it worked.
  • Henry Cho:
    • Henry Cho talks about his mother-in-law speaking loudly in English to his father, a man of Korean descent who however speaks perfect English. She says "HELLO, IT'S GOOD TO MEET YOU" loudly and slowly, and his dad turns to him and asks, "What is she doing?" -- "She thinks she's speaking Korean, Dad!"
    • When he himself visited Korea, he was approached by an American tourist who spoke with him in loud English and combined it with Korean-like El Spanish O.
      Henry Cho: All the Korean people she could pull out of the crowd, she pulls me out of the crowd and goes "IS THIS BUSEY THAT GOESEY DOWNEY TOWNEY?" I looked at her and said "I reckon so."

Theatre
  • Drood has John Jasper and Reverend Crisparkle attempt this approach to Helena and Neville Landless (unaware they actually speak English), with Crisparkle adding gestures.

Video Games

Web Comics

Web Original
  • Red vs. Blue:
    • Played for Laughs, Played Straight and Played With frequently because Lopez, the Red Team robot, can only speak Spanish.
    • The Red Team, who never understand him, try to communicate with him this way. It is subverted, however, in that Lopez can understand English perfectly. His body is simply incapable of speaking it.
    • Played straight when Church possesses Lopez, and finds he can only speak Spanish. He speaks slowly, still in Spanish, to try and warn the Reds of Tex coming to attack them in a tank. They, of course, can't understand him anyway.
    • Subverted in Season 9. Lopez impersonates Simmons by painting his armor maroon, but can still only speak Spanish. However, by speaking slowly, Sarge and Grif are somehow able to understand his Spanish, leaving them clueless to the switch.
    • Tucker is speaking loudly and slowly while the alien stands nearby, when Church approaches and says that he doesn't think that using this technique will allow the alien to understand him. Immediately subverted, as it is revealed that Tucker was speaking to Caboose. Caboose still doesn't understand.
    • Used by Sarge and lampshaded by Grif. It earned Sarge very much deserved snark:
      Sarge: ''Lopez. How. Do. We. Fix. Your. Speech. U. Nit.
  • This Onion article on traveling abroad advises that shouting at foreigner is useful, along with many other helpful tips for American tourists.
  • The Monona Rag blog reports that the Governor of Wisconsin is not only changing all foreign language classes to 'Talking Slowly' classes but that the new curriculum also includes expressive hand gestures and sprinklings of vaguely foreign words and authentic names such as Paddy, Paco, Limey and Frog, perhaps as a compromise. Having mastered the basics, they might continue in advanced classes of 'Nodding Condescendingly' and 'Swearing in Exasperation'.
  • Conversed by SF Debris in his opinionated episode guide for the episode "Darmok" from Star Trek: The Next Generation. He comments on desperate attempts of the Enterprise crew and Captain Picard to communicate with incomprehensible aliens whose language their Universal Translator couldn't crack.
    SF Debris: I'll check [Picard's] academy records. His language course was 203. Let me cross-check that. Oh yes! He's fluent in yelling at people. This is the time honoured method of speaking your own language loudly and somewhat slowly to people who don't speak it, in the hopes that they will suddenly understand you. (beat) The others just laugh at him.

Community Feedback Replies: 90
  • October 31, 2011
    XFllo
    Scrubs has Marco lampshading how very absurd this is.

    EDIT by X Fllo: Psychobabble6, this video is private. Could you explain the example?
  • October 31, 2011
    randomsurfer
    Inverted(?) in Savages of Gor, where a Red Savage (i.e. Native American) of the Dust Leg tribe talks this way in his native language to a Beautiful Slave Girl who only speaks Gorean.
    He was speaking to her in Dust Leg, slowly and clearly. "Yes, Master," she whimpered, in Gorean. "Yes, Master." It amused me that the youth, like so many individuals to whom only one language is familiar, so familiar that it seems that all humans must, in one way or another, be conversant with it, seemed to think that the girl must surely understand him if only he would speak slowly enough and with sufficient distinctness.
  • November 1, 2011
    FearOfTheUnknown
    @randomsurfer: It might be considered "inverted" if the definition is finalized to mean English (and usually American English), but for now I created the definition to focus on the main point of the trope, which is the speaking slowly and/or loudly, rather than any specific language.
  • November 1, 2011
    JonnyB
    IIRC there was another YKTTW a few months back on this same subject, it may have even launched.
  • November 1, 2011
    SithkingZero
    Another Red Vs. Blue example. Tucker is speaking loudly and slowly while the alien stands nearby, when Church approaches and says that he doesn't think that using this technique will allow the alien to understand him. Immediately subverted, as it is revealed that Tucker was speaking to Caboose. Caboose still doesn't understand.
  • November 2, 2011
    Mozgwsloiku
  • November 2, 2011
    Ultrayellow
    As a Real Life point, this isn't entirely unjustified. In fairness, speaking slowly and clearly (one effect of being louder is that you're more likely to enunciate) allows someone with only a basic understanding of the language you're speaking to keep up.
  • November 2, 2011
    bulmabriefs144
    Yea, it does work. Especially, in conjunction with body language.
  • November 2, 2011
    cygnavamp
    An episode of The Facts Of Life had the girls attempting to speak to a Spanish speaking woman this way. She does the exact same thing to them, in Spanish.
  • November 3, 2011
    XFllo
    • Done several times by Lord Rust of Discworld.
    • Pretty sure some Agatha Christie characters did this.
    • Tom Barnaby once mentions that it used to be so all you had to do to be understood by a foreigner was speak loudly.

    I've often seen this used as a sign that the guy speaking slowly is a racist of the "foreigners are all lazy thieves who can't be bothered to speak the only language worth learning" type.
    EDIT by X Fllo: Added your example from Midsomer Murders. Others need context though. The observation about the implied racism is interesting, however, I don't recollect it myself from fiction I'm familiar with. I would love if you provide examples. This would be an interesting variation of how this trope is played.
  • November 4, 2011
    AP
    • Samantha Who? had a subversion. The main character has amnesia and when she meets up with her friend, the friend invokes this trope. Another friend quickly berates her, lettign her know that Samantha has amnesia but isn't deaf.
  • November 4, 2011
    Duncan
    In Better Off Dead, Lane's father trying to communicate with Monique the exchange student from France:
    ARE YOU ENJOYING YOUR STAY IN OUR TOWN?
  • December 7, 2011
    Oreochan
    Bump.
  • December 7, 2011
    Generality
    ^4 Discworld has mentioned this a few times. Sergeant Colon did the same during his time in Klatch.

    It appears to be a stereotype that British tourists do this.

    • Eddie Izzard did a bit about this, where Brits in France would try to order the same foods from home, but speak with greater volume and enunciation.
    • This was also used in QI, when discussing the differences between British and American cuisine, Stephen jokingly asked American guest Rich Hall, "WHAT.. DO YOUR PEOPLE... EAT?"
  • December 7, 2011
    SeanMurrayI
    "DO YOOOOU UNDERSTAAAAAAAND THE WOOOORDS THAT ARE COMIN' OUT OF MY MOOOOOUTH?"
    --Carter, Rush Hour
  • December 7, 2011
    MorganWick
    America The Book references this.
    Do... you... speak... English?
  • December 7, 2011
    Mozgwsloiku
    in Gurps: Discworld rpg "shouting at foreigners" is an actual skill that can be used instead of a foreign language.
  • December 8, 2011
    battosaijoe
    In the 5th Harry Potter book, Umbridge maliciously speaks to Hagrid like this in order to make him look dumb and oafish, setting him up so she can fire him later. Hagrid responds in the same manner while trying to communicate what thestrals are, albeit in a confused and would-be helpful manner rather than a malicious one.
  • December 8, 2011
    SchrodingersDuck
    In Fawlty Towers, this is how Basil often addresses Manuel, the Spanish waiter and bellboy, along with lots of Gratuitous Spanish (which is as often as not French, Italian or As Long As It Sounds Foreign) and slapstick violence.
  • November 30, 2012
    XFllo
    I'm sorry I haven't noticed this ykttw earlier. It just popped up when I was searching for my own entry Language Barrier. The trope you propose is an important part of it. Perhaps this is a sub-trope?

    Have a look here: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=w5d19i90fnkutclrw4de5v7z

    I quite like the current name. But maybe Foreigners Speaking Loudly and Slowly would be even more transparent in conveying its meaning.

    Anyway, I have two examples for you:

    • Star Trek The Next Generation episode "Darmok" deals with Universal Translator Failure and an encounter with friendly, yet absolutely incomprehensible aliens. Both crews try this approach, which arguably slightly works, but both could grasp only very, very little.

    • Conversed by SF Debris in his opinionated episode guide of the episode "Darmok" from Star Trek The Next Generation.
      SF Debris: I'll check [Picard's] academy records. His language course was 203. Let me cross-check that. Oh yes! He's fluent in yelling at people. This is the time honoured method of speaking your own language loudly and somewhat slowly to people who don't speak it, in the hopes that they will suddenly understand you. (beat) The others just laugh at him.

    That could easily make a quote for this trope:-)
  • November 30, 2012
    JonnyB
    Will often be accompanied by, or followed by, El Spanish O.
  • December 1, 2012
    WeAreAllKosh
    There are two flavors of this:

    1) A sincere effort to be understood. 2) A condescending or impatient way of speaking to someone where there's a language barrier, similar to a condescending way of speaking to a child or someone who the speaker thinks is an idiot or "slow" (or may actually be mentally handicapped).

    If someone who has very broken English tries to speak at a rapid pace to me, I'll often very kindly ask them to speak slower please. Same if they are speaking a language I'm not too fluent in (Spanish: hable mas despacio, por favor is a suggested phrase for travellers in this situation in Spanish-speaking lands). But I have heard people be condescending about it, as if the other's difficulty is somehow more ridiculous than their own with the mutual language barrier.

    The first variation (the respectful kind) may be People Sit On Chairs, but the condescending kind is probably more tropeworthy as it conveys an alterior meaning, albeit an unfortunate one. I've also seen the latter done to "talk down to" people who speak the same language, as if they were an idiot for not understanding them the first time.
  • December 1, 2012
    WeAreAllKosh
    People talking with aging relatives (who've suffered hearing loss, or possibly Alzheimer's) may find themselves talking slower, and having to be careful to not in any way sound like they're "talking down" to their elder. Sometimes they have to be reminded to talk slower to them to be understood, especially if they are used to talking more casually at a "natural" speed to their aging relative in earlier times.
  • December 5, 2012
    justanotherrandomlurker
    Lampshaded in an episode of M*A*S*H, when Hawkeye tends to a wounded Korean.
    Hawkeye: Bet-ter? 'Bet-ter'... I've been here all this time, and I still can't speak the language.
    B.J.: (Jokingly) Well, you Americans figure everybody can understand English, lest-you-speak-it-slow-ly-e-nough.
    Hawkeye: Huh?
  • December 8, 2012
    XFllo
    ^^^ I'm sorry, but I don't see People Sit On Chairs in this at all. Sure, it appears in Real Life, like Chairs, but many tropes appear in fiction as well as in real life. If speaking slowly and loudly appears in fiction, it will always have a story-telling purpose.
  • December 8, 2012
    WeAreAllKosh
    ^ Well, at least I think there should be two separate tropes covering this, as there are two ways of "speaking loudly and slowly" in language-barrier situations:

    1) Respectfully, in a sincere effort to be understood 2) Disrespectfully and condescendingly, out of contempt for the person who doesn't happen to speak your language

    ...Usually accompanying facial expressions or body language, or the tone of the "louder and slower" speech, will give you a clue as to whether it's (1) or (2).

    I think they deserve two tropes because they have very different meanings: (1) is generally meant well, where the speaker's main motive is to facilitate actual communication; (2) is meant to show mockery or contempt for someone who can't understand the speaker's language (or understand it well enough to suit the speaker). Since the function of (1) is mainly mundane utility, it's at least somewhat like "sitting on chairs" since that's probably what most people would do in that situation (if they can't at least attempt to say the thing in the other's language)--the literal act of sitting on a chair is (most commonly) pure utility without any real tropable "meaning" or storytelling device, and I would say that is for the most part true for (1). (2) on the other hand tells you some things (unfortunate things) about the one doing it, and demonstrates something that has more chance of being significant to the story or one of its characters. But if both (1) and (2) are to be deemed tropeworthy, they're still different enough that they probably shouldn't make up the same trope. I'd call (2) something like Con Dee SCEN Dinggg Slow Speech (and would apply it to all condescending or belittling uses of slow speech, not just language-barrier-related). (1) I'm not sure what to call, maybe simply Speaking More Slowly And Clearly.

    I do also recognize that someone (like a somewhat ignorant or unseasoned tourist) might really think they're doing the loud-and-slow thing for reason (1), but it still comes across as (2) to people receiving or observing it. I'd throw that in with the trope for (2), since that's the impression given (and therefore part of the story, in how the character is perceived by other characters), even though in those cases it's a false one.
  • December 8, 2012
    WeAreAllKosh
    If you couldn't tell, I happen to cringe whenever I hear the (2) variety of this. Unfortunately it's a perception a lot of people have of tourists from the U.S. because a lot of my countrymen have done it abroad (although it certainly isn't limited to U.S. tourists). I also hate hearing it when people speak that way to people they think are "slow" or "stupid" (or as a way to convey such an insult)--I dislike condescension in general.

    So maybe that's why I think there should be a clear distinction between (1) and (2), and that you can usually tell which applies from tone and context.
  • December 28, 2012
    XFllo
    @ We Are All Kosh: Could you provide examples from fiction? Real Life impressions aren't sufficient to base a trope on them methinks. Also, don't worry that only Americans do it to poor foreigners. This is universal.

    For the alternative title - how about from the quote by SF Debris Fluent In Yelling At People?
  • February 21, 2013
    XFllo
    Bumping for feedback, I like the concept, and I would love to see some progress here. :-)

    EDIT: I will zero-edit the article to get feedback.
  • February 24, 2013
    PaulJohnson
    In the Discworld GURPS sourcebook this is a skill called "Shouting At Foreigners".

    "Mental/Hard, defaults to Linguistics-4, IQ-6 or HT-6.

    "Many people think that they can get by in any language by speaking loudly, slowly and clearly in their own, or by dredging up a few half-remembered words from old stories and books. On the Disc, this sometimes works."
  • February 24, 2013
    khayankh
    A lot of people seem to have a tendency to speak across a language barrier exactly as one might speak into a radio with poor reception. Emergency medical personnel seem especially prone to shouting rephrased requests or instructions in language(s) unknown to the listener when a translator has yet to show up. "DOES! SHE! HAVE! ALLERGIES!" And since being shouted at or talked to as though one is an imbecile is often perceived as insulting, the speaker may be perceived as condescending or frustrated regardless of their intent.
  • February 25, 2013
    MrRuano
    Averted in Assassins Creed III when Haytham slowly enunciates his English to Ziio, a native, she is confused as to why he's doing it in excellent English.
  • February 26, 2013
    robinjohnson
    ^ That sounds like a straight example, not an aversion.

    • Twoflower, the first tourist on the Discworld, does this to get by in Ankh-Morpork and elsewhere.
    • In an episode of Red Dwarf, Lister and the Cat find themselves on a parallel earth and for some reason believe they are in Bulgaria. They attempt to get by by speaking slowly and clearly and appending "-ski" to all their words.

    Seconding Fluent In Yelling At People.
  • February 28, 2013
    XFllo
    Was this used in Allo Allo? The Czech dub used it when the French were talking to the British pilots. Was it the same in the original?

    Also, we could/should do Rolling Updates. Troper FearOfTheUnknown - the OP - hasn't been discussing it, but he seems to be editing (his last edit is from 19th Feb). Should this be considered Up For Grabs, I'd gladly volunteer to be a new sponsor. :-)


    Ok, I am too anxious to wait. :-) I am doing the updates. Also, I am going to PM the OP to check out if s/he ok with it.


    I removed this from the description:

    • This is a joke trope, never taken seriously given the inherent Fridge Logic behind it.

    • Okay, I really only have the three examples, though it gets played a couple of ways. Really, the only reason I'm making this YKTTW is because I was trying to add it to the Red Vs Blue page only to find that, apparently, this rather well known joke is still untroped. I'm positive there are many more examples that escape me at the moment, though I am searching for them. I'd thought I'd put it here, though, so that the process may go quicker. And frankly, I can't think of a catchy title or a good description (though really, there's not much actual nuance to the trope to describe). It's also not exactly something that's easy to find. So, fellow Tropers, any input?
      • This can be safely in a discussion now. The trope has received a considerable attention.

    EDIT: I have copied most examples from the discussion. Some were too vague (Agatha Christie had it somewhere) and several need some love to avoid Zero Context Example. I tried to PM those who have contributed them, and hopefully, they will be back. :-) Some examples could use some polishing, e.g what is their native language, which country they are in or what was the nationality of the characters.

    There are some Played With examples which should be identified. However, I am not very sure which playing with-trope it would be so I let it be as is for now.
  • February 28, 2013
    blueflame724
    This happens in Along Came Polly; when Rubin and Polly first meet the former's parents, they ask the waiter in a rather condescending fashion: "Hi, Need big table please, 4 people, many thanks" with the waiter responding in a bewildered fashion "okay".
  • March 1, 2013
    Antonymous
    I'm surprised this doesn't exist already.

    Speaking slower is reasonable when the listener might speak the language poorly. I think this trope should focus on the louder part, since it's what doesn't make sense.

    Foreigners Are Deaf? Shouting Always Works?
  • March 1, 2013
    XFllo
    ^ I think both parts of it are important. And when the person in question doesn't understand the language at all, none of it makes sense, actually, but it still happens in real life as well as in fiction.

    I'll add your ideas for the name to the draft.

    However, I still favour Fluent In Yelling At Poeple. It's funny and it has the language skills connotations.

    My second choice would be Shouting At Foreigners, and the combo Fluent In Yelling At Foreigners is not bad either.
  • March 1, 2013
    XFllo
    Gosh, we have reached the magical five hats. Cool! But people, we still need to agree on the name and some examples lack context. No kidding with the hats, they are here for a reason. It's not a way to praise a concept.
  • March 1, 2013
    troacctid
    I'd be comfortable launching as is. I like the working title and the examples can always get Wiki Magic post-launch.
  • March 2, 2013
    XFllo
    ^ But do they ever? Do they get improved? Rarely, I think. I see way too many examples that have zero context or sentences like: does this, loves this, breaths this trope, is this trope personified, is this trope par excellence etc.

    I have seen them so often that when I first started editing, I was writing my additions in similarly bad style because I thought that's what's encouraged (I hope I tracked down most my questionable edits).

    I would like to avoid this problem when we can discuss it here before launching it.


    edit: answering troacctid's comment bellow: Nah, I did something much better than deleting them. I sent PMs to people who provided them, hoping they would write me back. Which they do and I love them for it! :-) I asked about the context in the discussion, editing the original comments adding the example.

    I know this wiki is informal and everything, but it's supposed to be reader-friendly and look professional. However, you are right I am sometimes very anxious about stuff.
  • March 2, 2013
    troacctid
    If you were really that concerned you could delete all the ones you marked and there would still be enough examples to launch. Or you could put commented notes in the article to draw attention to them. I don't think it's worth worrying about though. *shrug*
  • March 2, 2013
    XFllo
    Lumpers vs Splitters DEBATE: There have been suggestions that this could/should be split up to:
    • talking slowly
    • talking loudly
    • being helpful
    • being condescending

    Combined usually as such:
    • talking slowly and being helpful
    • shouting and being condescending

    Personally, I want to have this concept merged as is.
  • March 2, 2013
    troacctid
    I'd stick with slowly and/or loudly.
  • March 3, 2013
    XFllo
    We'll need a crowner for a name, I think. I'll try to make one tomorrow. Any input on the text or lumpers vs splitters?
  • March 5, 2013
    Nocturna
    I think this can stay combined for now. I see no reason to split loudly and slowly, as they generally occur together. (And I will note that louder (but not shouting) can help someone with minimal knowledge of a language understand it better, as tonal nuances are easier to hear when you're talking louder.) At this point, I also see no reason to split condescending versus helpful, particularly because there is overlap in that a person may mean to be helpful but come across as condescending. Both varieties have using louder and/or slower as a means to (hopefully) improve communication (or mock improving communication) as a common thread. We can always split later, if needed.

    TLDR: Keep them lumped.

    Regarding the name, while I think Fluent In Yelling At People is amusing and fitting, I have serious concerns about it leading to misuse for people who just yell a lot. Tropers tend to take titles very literally.
  • March 5, 2013
    Thecommander236
    Woot you revived something! Congratz man. You know you have my vote, but I'll throw in my hat when I know it's ready. GL
  • March 5, 2013
    Azaram
    I vote keep them together. I think Fluent In Yelling At Foreigners is both amusing and a good name for it, second vote would be Speaking Loudly And Slowly At Foreigners, and a distant third Shouting Always Works, but that's pretty weak. While it isn't always foreigners being shouted at, most of the time people think of this will be either people they think are or people they (the shouter) thinks are stupid.
  • March 6, 2013
    Telcontar
    Oh, another vote for keeping this lumped.

    Fluent In Yelling At People is a great name for a trope, but not this trope -- it sounds like someone always shouting, always angry, always yelling and bossing to get the job done no matter who they're talking to, as Nocturna said.

    Speaking Loudly And Slowly At Foreigners is clear, but much too chunky.

    Foreigners Are Deaf is my favourite -- while somewhat more bland, it's clear and I think the implications of other parts of the person is trying to communicate are there. Shouting At Foreigners is also good, followed by Shouting Always Works.
  • March 6, 2013
    XFllo
    I created a crowner. (I so hope I did not screw that up and that it will work.)

    LINK

    Please consider voting. Let the best name win!


    I pulled the list of names to consider from the description. Ideas for a name:
  • March 6, 2013
    ACarlssin
    I vote for "Speaking Loudly And Slowly At Foreigners" - it best describes what the trope actually is
  • March 6, 2013
    XFllo
    ^ You have every right to, and thank you for voting. I personally think it's kind of bland name for a trope, and also a bit of too long, thus failing concise and witty parts of Clear Concise Witty mantra. But it's very clear, to be sure.
  • March 7, 2013
    NESBoy
    • In Number Two, Marty and Jennifer visit a store clerk in the year 2015. Marty asks for the Timeline Altering Mac Guffin, but the clerk asks, "On what?" After asking a few more times, Marty goes for the direct approach.
      Marty: (very slowly, deliberately) Look, I just want to know how much money the Sports Almanac costs. Clerk: (just as deliberately) And I just want to know what format you want? ROM-Cart, ROM-D, Standard-C, Mini-C or Micro-C? Rental, Lease or download? What's your memcap and baud rate? Interface with me, kid. You'll never get by in this world if you can't interface. (silence) Marty: Uh, right--good advice.
  • March 7, 2013
    elwoz
    I don't like any of the "...At Foreigners" titles because generally when this trope appears, technically the person doing the speaking loudly and slowly is the foreigner. They may think of everyone around them as foreigners, but they're wrong, and that's part of why this trope characterizes boorish tourists.
  • March 7, 2013
    TooBah
    Also under Stand-Up Comedy:
    • Howie Mandel (back before he did game shows) used this in his stand-up routine, asking how we would like it if people did it to us. The punch line being that, when someone did it to him, it worked.
    • Henry Cho talks about his mother-in-law doing this to his father, a man of Korean descent who speaks perfect English. She says "HELLO, IT'S GOOD TO MEET YOU" loudly and slowly, and his dad turns to him and asks, "What is she doing?" "She thinks she's speaking Korean, Dad!"
  • March 7, 2013
    Antonymous
    ^^It can also happen when the speaker is at home and the listener is a foreigner. It's just less striking then, because the listener might be expected to understand the local language. But I think the intended meaning is that the listener is foreign to the speaker, not to the locale.
  • March 7, 2013
    XFllo
    ^^^ elwoz, I hope you voted up the name you find tolerable, if there is any such name among them. Or do you have a new idea? It might be not too late to add it, if it's really good and catchy.

    My personal favourite is still Fluent In Yelling At People, but Nocturna's argument that tropers take trope names literally (and I would add that unfortunately, they sometimes don't read trope descriptions) is valid.
  • March 9, 2013
    lakingsif
    Vicky tries to do this once in Vicky Cristina Barcelona, as she's initially not very good at speaking Spanish or Catala.
  • March 10, 2013
    SandRat
    In The Nanny, when fran gets a french boyfriend, her mother invokes this trope.
  • March 11, 2013
    sgamer82
    • Henry Cho has another one from when he himself visits Korea and is approached by an American tourist.
      All the Korean people she could pull out of the crowd, she pulls me out of the crowd and goes "IS THIS BUSEY THAT GOESEY DOWNEY TOWNEY?" I looked at her and said "I reckon so."

    • This is Granny Weatherwax's default form of communication when dealing with foreigners during the witches' travels in Witches Abroad.
  • March 12, 2013
    Knight9910
    Web Comics

  • March 12, 2013
    Knight9910
    Also: I like Fluent In Yelling At People as a trope name.
  • March 12, 2013
    XFllo
    @ Knight9910: Oh my, that is a fine example! Awesome! The second panel would make for a really cool trope image, huh? Or perhaps the first and the second combined.

    I added your example. I just wrote some context for it because Weblinks Are Not Examples.

    I love Fluent In Yelling At People, too. Democracy sometimes sucks. No, just kidding, democracy is the best.
  • March 12, 2013
    XFllo
    Thinking about possible indexes and related tropes:

    • Language Tropes (Most definitely)
    • Punctuated For Emphasis (Somebody suggested it at Lost and found forum. I am not sold on this one. I think when somebody emphasize his speech to highlight what their point is, it differs from language barrier situation. Though there is perhaps some connection.)
    • Self Demonstrating Article: we have quite a few examples that use CAPSLOCK and multiplied letters for yelling.
    • I think this might be a Sub Trope to Language Barrier.

    Any feedback on this?
  • March 12, 2013
    troacctid
    Punctuated For Emphasis is related in that it's a common way for print media to depict speaking slowly.

    Let's not make it self-demonstrating. =P
  • March 12, 2013
    XFllo
    Trope image (two panels):

    [1]
  • March 13, 2013
    Knight9910
    Motion to launch this baby?
  • March 13, 2013
    XFllo
    I think this weekend. :-) Only problem is that the crowner results are nearly a tie. Don't know what the proper procedure is in this case.
  • March 13, 2013
    Knight9910
    "Nearly a tie" is not a tie. If it's 8 to 6 then the 8 wins, ya know. :p

    Seriously, though, how about this: If we're waiting for the weekend then, say, Saturday or Sunday stop the vote and whichever is the winner, even if it's only the winner by one or two points, is the title. If it ends up being ACTUALLY a tie, then, I dunno, let it go another day or something.
  • March 14, 2013
    XFllo
    This is from a thread about crowners, and though it deals with renaming launched tropes, I think it still applies: Note that a majority is not always a consensus. (...) It's not simply "how many" votes; it's "what proportion" of the votes cast that matters. 5 votes out of 6 indicates a consensus. 49 votes out of 95 does not, even though it's a majority. In general, Renames should have at least 65 to 70% of the votes in favor to go through.
  • March 14, 2013
    Knight9910
    There's two problems with that. First, there is a HUGE difference between a vote to alter an existing trope, versus a vote to decide something about a future trope. If you fail to get a consensus to change the name of an existing trope all that happens is it keeps its current name. (That's why True Companions was called Nakama for ages even though everyone hated it.) If you fail to get a consensus to name an unlaunched trope then it stays unlaunched for eternity.

    Second, there are times when you just have to admit that people aren't going to give you an overwhelming consensus. Take a look at a lot of political elections, or jury decisions. There are things people don't agree on, and won't ever agree on.

    That said, I'm not telling you it needs to be launched NOW. Give it a few more days and hopefully we will have a consensus, but there's a chance we won't and sitting on the trope for three months waiting for a decisive consensus is dumb. But I would say that if there's not a consensus by, say, Sunday or Monday, then just pick whichever name is most popular and launch the sucker. If the name we pick really bothers people that much then they can always call for a vote to change it later.
  • March 14, 2013
    XFllo
    ^ Ok, will do. This sounds reasonable enough. I've been a troper for half a year now, so I still need to figure out a lot of things.
  • March 17, 2013
    XFllo
    I PM'ed a mod about this thread and the crowner, but we really do have to wait to have a consensus. Moreover, shimaspawn seemed to think that the winning title would be more suitable for a laconic, and that it's not an actual title.

    Perhaps we could use some more ideas for the name.
  • March 17, 2013
    Knight9910
    Which is exactly what I'm saying. Barring a lucky occurrence we're never, ever going to have an overwhelming consensus. It's an issue of there being a lot of names for the trope that are good but none that really pop, you know? There's no potential title that anyone would look at and say "Yes. Hell yes. That must be the title or the world will end, yes!"

    And, you know, I really very sincerely doubt that some magical messiah is going to show up with a perfect name that the entirety of TV Tropes will unanimously agree on. That's why I'll say again: I REALLY think we need to just launch. I mean, let's look at this logically:

    1. The only reason this is even an issue is because we made a crowner. If we'd never done that then the trope would have already launched as Speaking Loudly And Slowly Translation ages ago. 99% of YKTT Ws that get launched never have a crowner. A crowner is not strictly necessary.

    2. If we're going to wait for an overwhelming consensus we could potentially be sitting on the trope for months, if not years. Like I said, this just isn't something that that many people feel all that strongly about.

    3. Given number 1 and number 2 I would be shocked as Hell if any of the mods actually got pissed at us for just launching. I mean, I respect the idea of due process as much as the next guy but there comes a time when you need to ignore it. Unless the mods are all robots I'm sure they'll understand.

    Honestly, I just think you need to not be so timid. This is TV Tropes. We're very laid back here. You don't need to worry all that much about bureaucracy.
  • March 18, 2013
    XFllo
    ^ I think launching a trope when its crowner is not called is considered very bad by the staff. That said, were this my proposal entirely, I would have launched it as Fluent in Yelling at People/Foreigners, but as it is only an "adopted" trope and there were several good ideas for a title, I thought it necessary to have a crowner. Plus people in the discussion did not tend to agree on one, which also mirrors the voting... Sigh.

    It's true that I should be spunkier at times. Amazing how you got me figured just from this discussion. ;-)
  • March 18, 2013
    Knight9910
    It's just a bit obnoxious to me that, you know, this trope is totally ready to go. It has an image, a good quote, a great description, tons of examples... the only thing it's lacking is a name.

    Also, here's a good question: what exactly qualifies as a consensus? Right now the top title is Fluent In Yelling At Foreigners with 10 votes, while the next highest option only has 5. Just speaking for myself that seems like a pretty clear statement that most people prefer that option, even though in terms of percentage of the total votes it only has about 37% (that's not counting those that are in negatives right now).
  • March 18, 2013
    Nocturna
    Consensus on this wiki is generally defined as being the leading option and having at least a 2:1 ratio of upvotes to downvotes. So Fluent In Yelling At Foreigners actually does currently have consensus. And I don't see how that's a laconic.

    Also, X Fllo, when talking to shima, you did make sure to mention that this was for a YKTTW, right? Because crowners for YKTTW are generally treated much more laxly than TRS crowners (in my experience).
  • March 18, 2013
    Knight9910
    That's about what I expected, Nocturna. I can see why a crowner for a TRS trope would be strict, but for a YKTTW it's not nearly as big a deal.
  • March 18, 2013
    XFllo
    ^^ Nocturna, yes, I did mention it's a ykttw draft and sent the links to both this discussion and to the crowner. I'll write to her again soon. The votes stabilized a bit over the weekend.
  • March 18, 2013
    mightymewtron
    Drood has John Jasper and Reverend Crisparkle attempt this to Helena and Neville Landless (unaware they actually speak English), with Crisparkle even adding gestures.
  • March 18, 2013
    DaibhidC
    Twoflower doesn't do this that I recall; he starts off with a completely useless translation book, and then mysteriously becomes fluent in Morporkian when it's convenient to the plot.
  • March 18, 2013
    FastEddie
    The leading names in the crowner are still too clumsy. Translation By Volume could work. I added it.
  • March 19, 2013
    XFllo
    Somebody also added Translation By Shouting.
  • March 23, 2013
    Knight9910
    Alright, seems like Translation by Volume is winning currently.
  • March 23, 2013
    XFllo
    Yep, it seems to be the one we will go with. It's the leading option and the ratio of yay's to nay's is ok as well, I presume.
  • March 31, 2013
    Knight9910
    ...this still hasn't been launched? The Crowner's closed, why is this still here?
  • March 31, 2013
    1810072342
    If we can still make additions, there's a quote we can add to the entry on Red vs Blue:

    Sarge: ''Lopez. How. Do. We. Fix. Your. Speech. U. Nit.
  • March 31, 2013
    Tallens
  • March 31, 2013
    Nocturna
    ^^^ Crowner's closed because of the anti-DDoS measures, not because it was ever officially called. That said, it had a clear lead, so this could probably be launched.
  • March 31, 2013
    XFllo
    ^ That, and technically, we're missing one hat now. ;-) Though I think it's really launchable, especially with the title being approved by the staff. I'll write to shimaspawn.

    Removed from the description:
    • Until the OP appears here, I volunteer myself to take care of the trope, doing Rolling Updates. X Fllo.
    • Feedback on the text is most welcome.
    • We need to add context to two examples from Discworld, otherwise they're going to be commented out.
    • There was a splitters vs lumpers debate. Most tropers preferred this lumped.
    • We have a trope naming crowner, but there is no clear consensus on the name, so we must wait a bit. We could use fresh ideas for the title.
  • March 31, 2013
    XFllo
    Launching!:-) Thank you all for your contributions. Any help with the cross-wicking would be appreciated.

Three days must pass before this YKTTW is Launchworthy or Discardable

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/discussion.php?id=k25ivabq62oge8gikk28eqze