Talk:Hong Kong English

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It is taught from kindergarten, and depending on the geographical location, English is most likely to be deferred over Chinese, especially in the New Territories.

The geographical variation is not really that noticeable nowdays. The reference to New Territories is a bit arbitrary.

After the transfer of the sovereignty of Hong Kong in 1997, only a handful of primary schools and secondary schools are able to remain English as the medium of instruction under new government policy.

About a quarter of secondary schools adopts English as the main teaching language. So, that should be more than a handful. -- 14:13, 15 October 2006 (UTC)

Rearranged and removed reference to Hong Kong English as a dialect of English (as mentioned in the article). Reference to "Honkish" etc did not pass the google test. Some materials are too far off (e.g. educational system) and putting the blame on teachers, etc seems to be POV. -Hlaw 18:40, 20 Nov 2004 (UTC)

Agreed, It's too far-fetched although it's partly suggested by the recent results of the standardized exam for English teacher in Hong Kong - a whopping 79% failure rate. -Calvin Chong 0:18, 30 Dec 2004 (HKT)
Students learn what the teachers teach. If the teachers themselves fail on their grammars and pronunciation, the students usually have a hard time unlearning the bad habits. I learned my English in Hong Kong. I have lived in the US for 20 years. I've improved on grammar tremendously, but I still have trouble getting rid of the bad accent. Isn't it true that children can easily get rid of accent if they are 13 year old or younger? It is tough for adults without going through some kind of speech therapy trainning session. Though it is POV, it is very true regardless. I can attest to that personally. Kowloonese 20:36, Dec 29, 2004 (UTC)
It is quite true that students can be shaped easily before the age of 13 (some suggest 15) and they acquire, rather than get rid of accent. -Calvin Chong 11:00, 30 Dec 2004 (HKT)


In Singlish, it is written that chop - rubber stamp (from Malay cap) - "Immigration will chop your passport.". Did chop come from Malay or from Indian? --Hello World! 02:28, 8 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The word is ultimately of Indian (Hindi) origin, according to Webster's. My guess would be that it came into Malay from there. However, I don't know whether it came into Singlish and Hong Kong English from Malay or Hindi; either is plausible, I suppose. --Marnen Laibow-Koser (talk) 13:02, 8 Apr 2005 (UTC)

According to the Dictionary of Hong Kong English 'chop' came from Indian English and Chinese Pidgin English. (talk) 13:16, 28 November 2012 (UTC)

Malay is the original, but it was borrowed by Hong Kong, Singapore and Indian English early on through Chinese Pidgin English| 4 Feb 2010 —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:24, 4 February 2010 (UTC)

It may be interesting to point out that the Cantonese people in Hong Kong call this differently from the English people in Hong Kong despite the origin of the word may be the same. In Cantonese transliteration of this Hindi word, it is pronounced more like "chalk" than "chop", e.g. "yau chalk" 郵戳 means the postal stamp cancellation on the envelops. Kowloonese 20:40, Apr 8, 2005 (UTC)
郵戳 is pronounnced yóu chāi in Mandarin, and is unlikely to be Hindi in origin. -Hmib 21:45, 20 Jun 2005 (UTC)
My dictionary says the Mandarin pinyin is you2 chuo1, not chai. Kowloonese 00:10, 18 January 2006 (UTC)

How difficult is it to acquire a need accent after a young age? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Crazysword (talkcontribs) 08:33, August 10, 2005 (UTC).

POV problems[edit]

Overall this article seems to suffer from non-neutral POV problems in its underlying tone. Someone who knows more about HK English (preferably with at least some knowledge or background in linguistics) should come and fix up this article, although I've found a few things I know I can edit right now because they're simply inaccurate. Neutral experts on HK English, please? Svenska84 08:34, 20 May 2005 (UTC)

Do you mind pointing out the POV bits? Indeed the article makes it sound like Hong Kong people simply can't speak English properly - however I am not sure what can be done about it, because the mispronunciations etc. are quite true... -- KittySaturn 16:57, 2005 May 25 (UTC)

I agree with Svenska84. I believe that this article seem to concentrate on the worst aspect of Hong Kong English. This may lead foreigners to think that Hong Kong people all suck at English. In fact a lot of Hong Kong people, though still with the Hong Kong accent, do not suffer from those problems listed. In fact, the importance of English in Hong Kong has made a lot of Hong Kong people improve their English. I think there should at least be some sentences mentioning that those problems listed out do not reflect the Hong Kong population as a whole. 08:45, 27 May 2006 (UTC)

This is about tag cleanup. As all of the tags are more than a year old, there is no current discussion relating to them, and there is a great deal of editing done since the tags were placed, they will be removed. This is not a judgement of content. If there is cause to re-tag, then that of course may be done, with the necessary posting of a discussion as to why, and what improvements could be made. This is only an effort to clean out old tags, and permit them to be updated with current issues if warranted.Jjdon (talk) 21:20, 28 April 2008 (UTC)

People in Macau also use Hong Kong English[edit]

Should anyone add something to say that people in Macau also use some Hong Kong English such as the Internet word like "R u go to sing k ar?" or "sleep la, bye!"--HeiChon~XiJun 16:58:47, 2005-08-13 (UTC)

Be bold~! :-) Is there any Portuguese influence on English spoken in Macau by the way? — Instantnood 19:50, August 14, 2005 (UTC)

I wouldn't jump into conclusion to say Macau also uses Hong Kong English. Natives from Hong Kong and Macau both speak Cantonese. The Cantonese influence will be similar. It is very hard to prove whether the Hong Kong English and Macau English are developed independently under the same Cantonese influence or Macau English was actually based on Hong Kong English. The Portuguese influence to Macau English is not present in Hong Kong. Television has big influence on language development. People in Macau watch Hong Kong TV boardcast because the two territories are so close together. Hong Kong's TV signals can reach Macau with little boosting. Kowloonese 00:18, 18 January 2006 (UTC)

Sorry for a late reply! I think Portugese has no influence on English spoken in Macau. However when Portuguese people speak English, they have an obvious accent. Something like pronunciates the /t/ as /d/ or /p/ as /b/.-- 16:45, 25 February 2006 (UTC)

Well, Macau was colonised by the Portugese, but not the British. Different cultural backgrounds and education systems should have different affects upon the English languages in these two cities. What XJ suggests is quite superficial: sing k is a Cantonese transliteration, while "la" is commonly found in Chinese English, like Singaporean English. -- Jerry Crimson Mann 18:11, 25 February 2006 (UTC)

As far as I'm concerned, Macau schools teach American English rather than British English, according to thhe education system, whilst Hong Kong schools (excluding international schools) teach in British English. Cherubfish 14:28, 7 June 2006 (UTC)
Interestingly, Portuguese influence on English spoken in Macau is minimal because even more than the British, Portugal ruled Macau with an even more indirect hand. Portuguese was not spoken on the streets and most schools in fact followed the Chinese education system and Portuguese was not taught in these schools. English Teachers in these schools are ethnic Chinese and have Hong Kong or (more commonly) mainland Chinese or Taiwanese training backgrounds - of course they don't speak any Portuguese. Of course this applies to the Chinese population - the Macanese are another matter. --JNZ (talk) 22:04, 14 January 2008 (UTC)


I'm not going to suggest that hong kong english is perfect or what, but as Svenska84 mentioned earlier, the article seems to suffer from NPOV, mixing up personal frustration and wildguess with the full picture of Hong Kong English. It's a commentary, rather than a wiki page to meet basic standard here. --Yau 20:04, 6 May 2006 (UTC)


  • The accent of spoken English in Hong Kong, perhaps, originates from the "tung sheng" (通勝), in which it is possible to find one or two pages containing lots of direct transliteration of English into Cantonese words, for example, "dinner" would be transliterated into the Chinese words "甸那", pronounced "din na".
It's obviously a wildguess or an incorrect cause-and-effect relationship. Hong Kong English is vastly different from that of Tung Sheng which is even not read by most students. The odd transliteration of English words in Tung Sheng is due to lack of relevant english phonetics in Chinese language but authors still have to write it in chinese. --Yau 20:04, 6 May 2006 (UTC)
I personally think the page in "tung sheng" is provided as an aid for people in Hong Kong, which at some time, have not been quite well-versed in English, to communicate with foreigners. -- bubu~ 06:22, 9 May 2006 (UTC)
The article never even describes what the "tung sheng" is. Nor does it give any citations. Patiwat 03:52, 10 July 2006 (UTC)

Personal frustration?[edit]

In fact, the fluency of spoken English in Hong Kong depends on the speakers' occupation somtimes. For example, many engineers in Hong Kong are speaking in a very heavy Hong Kong accent, even if they are highly educated. This made some non-local students very frustrated, as they have difficulty to understand their accent.

The writer, possibly a student of engineering, seems to put his personal frustration in a wiki's page. I think this should be replaced with a more general picture of use of hong kong english if there's no statistics for this. --Yau 20:04, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

Partial Picture?[edit]

It's rather strange to suggest "English is most likely to be deferred over Chinese" but at the same time English standard is poor in Hong Kong. The actual status of English seems to be wrongly illustrated.

e.g it says "it should be noted that Hong Kong English is regarded as a low standard of English even among the local populace." but it's partially correct. Did you hear the complaints from teachers like "D 學生成日話, 人地明咪得囉"? --Yau 20:04, 6 May 2006 (UTC)

Yeah, a lot of my friends think that too! Cherubfish 14:30, 7 June 2006 (UTC)


The citations are heavily sufficient for this page. For instance, what's the source for the following vocab? I bet 1 buck that 90% of local hongkongais doesn't know what it is.

Shroff can be seen as the title of the payment counter in Hong Kong Identity Card centres. StevenMcCoy 06:07, 17 October 2006 (UTC)

These loanwords seems to stop influencing the next generation, since 1990s I guess. -- Sameboat 12:31, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

General comments to the above[edit]

Hello there, I've gone ahead in "neutralising" the tone of the article a bit.

  • Hong Kong English is a "low standard" of English, but at the same time it is my feeling that in general there's nothing wrong with using it as a Hong Konger, and in this respect this is similar to Singlish. With both Hong Kong English and Singlish, it is my observation that the people who are "frustrated" by the "low standard" are snobbish people who think that because they speak English better, they are more of a "high class", but most of these people don't seem to actually speak it as perfectly as they like to think either (except the Singaporean government I suppose).
  • I find it very biased to say "many engineers in Hong Kong are speaking in a very heavy Hong Kong accent, even if they are highly educated".
  • "Shroff" appears very often in written form in Hong Kong, "garoupa" I have heard of, and the others I don't really have any idea about. Even with "shroff", though, I have never actually heard anyone say it.

-- KittySaturn 23:15, 7 May 2006 (UTC)

hi there,

  • as for the item "many engineers in Hong Kong are speaking in a very heavy Hong Kong accent, even if they are highly educated" i think (well, i think) that it's relatively true. but these days who don't speak with a very strong Hong Kong accent? --bubu~ 06:19, 9 May 2006 (UTC)\
  • It occurs to me that the standard of English in Hong Kong is generally quite poor. It is largely because the employers are mostly Chineses who never speak English or English has never been the most important means of communication in power axis in the government and corporations ever since sovereignty turnover in 1997. Imagine that, if your bosses never speak English and they set poor examples among the populace, for what do you have the motivation for brushing up the language? For career? For money? The influence from the political power in China worsens it.

General comments[edit]

I think it is worth pointing out that the term 'Hong Kong English' does not only refer to the second language spoken by the Cantonese-speaking population of Hong Kong, but also the first language spoken by the resident British community, the Eurasians and local-born South Asians. I have restored all the words garoupa, godown, nullah, praya and shroff because I think that they are indeed Hong Kong English words. Garoupa is grouper, but in Hong Kong we have adopted the Portuguese name. Praya is an old term for waterfront, and was used extensively up till 1950s and 1960s (e.g. Wanchai Praya refers to the area where the Hong Kong Exhibition Centre is). Nullah is basically an open sewer, this word comes from India. There is a street called 'Stone Nullah St' in Wanchai. I heard this term being used in Hong Kong in 1980s. Godown is a term used in India, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore and there is a company called 'Kowloon Godown'. In fact, among English-speakers in Hong Kong, the term godown completely replaces the word 'warehouse'. Shroff is a cashier in British India, but in Hong Kong the meaning has been restricted to a payment counter in a government office (e.g. passport office) or a carpark. You can still see this word in the passport offices, Inland Revenue Department, etc.

Other Hong Kong English that may be added include amah, joss sticks, typhoon and verandah. I need to do more research on these before I can add them on.

Most English words unique to Hong Kong are of Portuguese or Anglo-Indian origin, and they are shared among all the former British possessions in the East (India, Burma, British Malaya and Hong Kong). —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Jafarw (talkcontribs) 19:40, May 16, 2006 (UTC).

Garoupa is common on menus, as opposed to Grouper. Many warehouse are named Something Godown. There are a few waterways named Something Nullah, and at least two streets/roads, Hong Kong Island and Kowloon each, has the word Nullah as part of its name. There are two roads in Kennedy Road named praya. — Instantnood 17:20, 4 June 2006 (UTC)
We learnt the volcabulary "godown" instead of "warehouse" in school...

I don't recall learning the word warehouse at all Cherubfish 14:36, 7 June 2006 (UTC)

Personal research is not encouraged here unless we can find out reliable citations. --Yau 22:54, 20 November 2006 (UTC)
I can think of cookbooks published by Wan Li publications published in the 1980s and 1990s, in addition to the restaurant menus. In fact, had I not read the discussions here I would have thought HK still uses garoupa as I had not seen anyone using grouper when I lived in HK in the 1980s and early 90s, and even in 1996/97. --JNZ 23:13, 28 June 2007 (UTC)


Perhaps a reference to a shower being called a bath. Enlil Ninlil 03:43, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

Differences in the English Language Throughout Asia[edit]

Cell phone or handphone? SMS or text? I've posted a brief intro about the differences in terms used for every day things in Asia in my blog at I would like to expand on the list and to do that I will need contributions from as many people as possible. Please do help me out by sharing your valuable insights. Thank you :) —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 09:17, 14 February 2007 (UTC).

Flavouring particles are discourse particles?[edit]

The section on 'flavouring particles' seems very similar to the discourse particles used in Singlish. Are these the same thing and do we need to link them together? Secretlondon 07:12, 26 April 2007 (UTC)

Hong Kongers=inferior?[edit]

"Contrary to Australians or New Zealanders, Hong Kongers tend to think that English with local influence is most likely to be inferior or irregular."

Wait, so if Hong Kongers think that the HK English described in this article is inferior, then why would they use it? Herenthere (Talk) 21:39, 4 June 2007 (UTC)

This comparison is ridiculous. Few Hong Kongers speak English like native, while for Australian English is their native language. The introduction has been rewritten by some Hong Kong wikipedians to reflect a "neutral" point of view, and cover up the real problem of their spoken English. The fact is that many replace English syllables with substantially different Cantonese ones, which is the main source of their pronunciation mistakes, but few are aware of it. For example, can you guess what word "yin(55)-soo(33)-mun(11)" is? (The numbers indicate pitch levels.) -- 05:52, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
Yeah I agree, many HK people like to think of HK as an English speaking region, just like Australia, the US, the UK etc, even though the vast majority of the HK population know very little or no English at all. Seems to me it's a sort of disclaimer "we do speak English, but we're not very good at it". LDHan 15:08, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
So let me get something straight, HKers like using a local version of English or don't like? Because the way that sentence is worded makes it sound as if the majority of people who live in HK hate people who use a localized version of English. I could reword it if anyone else can provide some sort of clarification to the current statement. BTW, it does sound biased. -Herenthere (Talk) 20:05, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
Basically in Hong Kong while English is an official language and a business language, for most of the people (even a substantial number of middle class) it is more like a foreign language you never really use in your daily life. When they use English, it is expected lots of errors will crop up. It is that flavour of English that is hated in Hong Kong.--JNZ 23:39, 10 August 2007 (UTC)
A) To answer Herenthere's question, in HK the term "Hong Kong English" does not mean "Comprehensible and grammatically correct English with a touch of Hong Kong accent", to be honest there isn't a developed, officially recognized style for "Hong Kong English" as in "Australian English". In HK, there are mainly two, rather polarized, group: proficient English users and poor English users.
B) Proficient English speakers consist mainly of ppl who attended international school or trained overseas, hence they would naturally acquire the accent of the school or country they went to. (e.g. ppl who attended US international school in HK gets US accent). Poor English speakers consist mainly of ppl who attended public school, i.e. the vast majority of the general public. People in this category tend to make a lot of random mistakes in grammar, spelling and pronunciation that render their sentence uncomprehensible, that's what most ppl in HK refer to as "Hong Kong English". That's why tutoring school in HK often put phrase like "We will help you to get rid of Hong Kong English" in their ads. --Da Vynci 07:57, 3 October 2007 (UTC)
Well I'm just glad that the particular sentence has been removed. Herenthere (Talk) 13:30, 3 October 2007 (UTC)
There's right. The people of HK regards anything prefixed or suffixed by HK is inferior. For example, "made in Hong Kong" is a euphemism for unreliability. There is even a TV advert for paper hankies which emphasises that it is a product of Germany, so must be better. No one would dream of emphasising something as made in HK as a selling point. (talk) 16:08, 2 October 2011 (UTC)

No References=No page[edit]

I hate to say this but wikipedia is turning into a battle field for racism... This page should be deleted as there are NO references.theOne 08:04, 3 September 2007 (UTC)

Your logic is questionable. You don't delete the entire page just because the quality of the content is not yet up to standard. Why don't you be constructive by adding reference in the article? Find a way to improve it! This page should be kept as much as pages like Jamaican English or South African English. --Da Vynci 07:15, 3 October 2007 (UTC)

Language influence[edit]

I'm not convinced by the "here is a sign that says Centre, now here is a sign that says Center!" In the U.S. we frequently use alllllllll sorts of spellings mostly to reflect the area's heritage and secondly for marketing purposes. In fact I've seen Centere before. It's not necessarily because British and American English is directly influencing Hong Kong use of English but that all options are AVAILABLE to Hongkongers to use and as a result they will personally decide how to use it. As a linguist-enthusiast and friend to a big-shot linguist who drills me on his Ph.D. discoveries everyday, this article is not exactly being fair. Observations pointed out in the article are indeed true in that they occur in the population but the REASONING for them is quite off. Just because something is noticeable does not immediately mean a correlation can be found. Back to the British/American spellings, the use of both spellings is not indicative of something inherent in Hong Kong English, especially when you're showing building signs. It could be an American company financed that one building and maybe the other building was built during British rule. It could be merely a matter of style, maybe its named after a "Centre" elsewhere or that all other malls are named "Centre" in that area. Especially for second-languages and languages that are not frequently used in that society, there is no methodology or guide to which natives will actually follow, in fact more often than not as this talk page has stated, they are using English for fun and however they think it should be used. A more logical argument for HK English is that Hongkongers have adapted words and meanings which FIT for their society. (ie: "cool" was observed as people who look snooty, where Americans are referring to the style not the person, but canto society is highly critical of people and thus the meaning transitioned to adapt to daily conversational needs). .:DavuMaya:. 17:10, 7 November 2007 (UTC)

Deleting the majority of the article[edit]

Original research, speculation, POV, crystal-balling, and more original research. The article contains just about everything that shouldn't be in an article, and nothing that should be in. No notability, no references, no relevancy, and no prose. I've removed the majority of the article, and call for the rewrite of the pitiful little that remains to make at least some sense and notability, or I will nominate it for deletion. Aran|heru|nar 14:16, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

I see no reason for such a large change to be made without discussion, so have reverted it. The lack of civility in the above note concerns me. Orderinchaos 22:00, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Cannot agree more with Orderinchaos!--Da Vynci (talk) 22:49, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
I am currently working on providing some references and I would strongly suggest that others help with this too: User:Alice/Hong_Kong_English since Aranherunar makes a valid point about our articles needing to be referenced. However, I would personally prefer if material awaiting referencing is deleted wholesale only if it is contentious or misleading and then only after allowing a reasonable period, say a week for citation. Alice 23:02, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
I have prepared a slightly different version of the article with some references; does anyone object to my restoring this version: [1], please? Alice 23:20, 15 December 2007 (UTC)
Since I see that Aranherunar may not have the possibility to reply for some 48 hours, I will replace the page on or after 18 December 2007 unless there have been rational objections. Alice 23:31, 15 December 2007 (UTC)

And finally...[edit]

This article makes a start, but needs a lot of work. I don't think it mentions the odd local pronunciation of the final letter of the alphabet as "eezed" (2 syllables), vs. zed in England and zee in the US. For some reason this usage is not only common, but is (mis)taught in schools. Rodparkes (talk) 08:42, 7 January 2008 (UTC)


I spent an entire weekend looking over all tourist guides written on Hong Kong, including Lonely Planet, Rough Guide, Timeout, Fodor's. All describe local Hong Kong Chinese's English is rather limited, and there will be difficulties finding English speakers in districts off the tourist track, for example, in Tin Shui Wai. All guides suggest learning a few phrases of Chinese for going to the likes of Tin Shui Wai or Tai Po and ask hotel staff to help write down the destinations in Chinese. This shows that Hong Kongers' English is probably not as good as most locals imagine. --JNZ (talk) 22:12, 3 February 2008 (UTC)

--Da Vynci (talk) 23:28, 8 April 2008 (UTC): Hi JNZ, you picked an extreme example of Tin Shui Wai, that neighborhood has the highest population of Mainlanders in HK. That area is a de facto colony of Communist China, surely you will find a lot of people who can't speak English. Try Discovery Bay ( a district off the tourist track), Mid-levels (another district off the tourist track) or Pokfulam (yet another district off the tourist track), you might have a very different point of view.

Umm, the comments on English fluency and advice to tourists are not written by me, but rather copied almost verbatim from tourist guides. You may be surprised to learn the advice about the need to use a few phrases of Chinese and asking hotel staff to write down the destinations in Chinese.
In addition, in your post above you have chosen suburbs where large numbers of expatriate Westerners live, and it is probably not representative of districts of Hong Kong. Besides, who says these three regions are off the tourist track? Mid-levels has a number of tourist-oriented eateries that attract tourists, Discovery Bay are for tourists visiting friends, and Pok Fu Lam is where the Cyberport and the University of Hong Kong are - certainly it doesn't lack business travellers.
If you pick Ho Man Tin (a middle class suburb off the tourist track), Sha Tin (again a suburb with heaps of middle class people as well and has some moderate numbers of tourist attractions), and Wong Tai Sin (well, the temple does attract tourists, and yes, it is a working class suburb), I trust my European New Zealander friends will need a few phrases of Chinese to get around. --JNZ (talk) 07:19, 20 April 2008 (UTC)

About Contractions[edit]

Someone wrote 'Contractions such as "aren't" are almost never used even in conversations, as much of use of English for most Hong Kongers are for formal writings.' But it doesn't quite match my personal experience. Is there any reference for it? Hermesw (talk) 21:15, 17 February 2009 (UTC)

"Open the door, see the mountain"[edit]

Sorry I've never heard anyone saying this. Should we put it here even it's not a popular 'Hong Kong English' phrase? Hermesw (talk) 21:19, 17 February 2009 (UTC)

I agree to that. A search on Google yielded 2 counts on mandarin and one attributed to Hong Kong English but this phrase has not crossed my path save for an entry in a joke book concerning 'Chinglish'. The sources on Google are personal blogs only, however, so they aren't really credible. Maybe it should be moved somewhere else anyway? Erikwesley (talk) 16:30, 5 August 2014 (UTC)

  • Seems like original research. Now removed. -- Ohc ¡digame! 03:59, 6 August 2014 (UTC)

Upper Class Use of English[edit]

My guess is that the "old money" i.e. theose who are Eurasians or have been in HK since the mid 19th century and have been rich since the early 20th century, like David Li Kwok-po or Sir Robert Hotung's descendants, use English at home, and any of the rich circles who made it "only" over the past 50 years like Li Ka shing, Lee Shau Kee, Kwok Tak Seng's descendants, or the late Kung Yu Sum don't use English at home.

It is not exactly correct to say all upper class families in HK use English. I don't doubt many of the family members of these "newer rich" like Li Ka-shing and family command good English, but there is no way they are like Lee Kwan Yew's family who use English only even at home. --JNZ (talk) 02:03, 16 May 2009 (UTC)

No, Li Ka-shing cannot even speak proper Cantonese (he is a Gagilan) let alone English. He cannot write Chinese comprehensively because of a lack in general education. If you listen to his son Richard speak, then you will know he is a joke. He cannot speak proper English or Cantonese, but mixes the two and speaks with a terrible stutter. He obviously has a speech impediment, and did not have the intellect to finish his American degree course either. It just proves being able to make lots of money in HK has nothing to do with language ability or intellect but depended more on opportunities and having guts to con the people of HK (for example see the history of PCCW). (talk) 16:03, 2 October 2011 (UTC)

Overseas Chinese returned from abroad and Hong Kongers who've received most of their education abroad or in International Schools tend to use English at home, and those who speak English as their primary language tend to speak something very close to either British Received Pronunciation or Midwestern American English, though with local influences. Otherwise most use Cantonese, even those of the upper class. 18:10, 17 August 2009 (UTC)

Mistaken "weasel words" warnings[edit]

IMO the numerous warning notes referring to "weasel words" in the "Spoken characteristics" section are mistaken. Phrases like "many people" or "some people" are not used there to sneak in inappropriate POV or unprovable statements, but merely indicate relative quantity of HK English speakers showing the described characteristics. As one would be hard put to quantify these with exact percentages, I do think the rough estimations expressed by "many", "some", etc. are entirely appropriate. Can it be that these "weasel" warnings (also strewn liberally in similar situations on other pages) are generated by a robot rather than by intelligent editors? They only "help" to disfigure and discredit perfectly OK pages. —Preceding unsigned comment added by ChrisZ78 (talkcontribs) 22:20, 21 November 2009 (UTC)

I wonder whether it's possible to remove them. Meursault2004 (talk) 00:07, 3 December 2009 (UTC)


According to[1], /ɪˈfɛkt/ (effect) is correct, but in the article it is implied the contrary. Astrothomas (talk) 01:29, 23 April 2010 (UTC)

Still POV after more than 4 years[edit]

It's been pointed out several times that this article is heavily affected by POV but nothing seems to have changed, although this problem persists since at least 2006. This is rather pathetic, so I suggest to start a new discussion on how to finally clean this up. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 08:27, 4 August 2010

Pending clean up of unsourced items, POV, and OR[edit]

This article has now been tagged for several years. Unsourced claims are either the editors' own point of view or original research, neither of which is admissible per policy, and will shortly be removed if inline referenced sources are not/cannot be provided. Any claims to the use and description of Hong Kong English must be supported by reliable sources that can be verified. --Kudpung (talk) 04:48, 13 March 2011 (UTC)

Add on to background and consonant plus grammar[edit]

I plan adding to the article which seems rather lacking in general information. I will use some academic source because the article has a few citation. I found one article that discusses lexical stress. Reading some of comments I will try to be neutral as possible because that seems to be a problem with this article. I also notice that the article is rather messy and does give a proper citation to any material that was used in the article itself.


Alice Y. W. Chan. (2004). Syntactic Transfer: Evidence from the Interlanguage of Hong Kong Chinese ESL Learners. The Modern Language Journal, 88(1), 56-74. Retrieved from

Eoyang, E. (2000). From the Imperial to the Empirical: Teaching English in Hong Kong. Profession, 62-74. Retrieved from

Setter, J. (2006). Speech Rhythm in World Englishes: The Case of Hong Kong. TESOL Quarterly, 40(4), 763-782. doi:10.2307/40264307

Sewell, A. (2017). Pronunciation Assessment in Asia’s World City: Implications of a Lingua Franca Approach in Hong Kong. In Isaacs T. & Trofimovich P. (Eds.), Second Language Pronunciation Assessment: Interdisciplinary Perspectives (pp. 237-255). Bristol; Blue Ridge Summit: Multilingual Matters / Channel View Publications. Retrieved from

--user: Darceyguffey (Darceyguffey) 2:06 11 March 2018. —Preceding undated comment added 21:07, 11 March 2018 (UTC)