I got the following YouTube comment on my previous British accent video:
It was a blow to my morale, to be honest with you. No sugar-coating, no hiding behind nice words. Just a matter-of-factly statement that my Received Pronunciation is nowhere near being native-like and that I’m better off speaking with my own accent.
I was feeling quite crappy, to be honest with you guys, and I even considered quitting this Accent Adventure project altogether because the harsh reality hammered home – “I’m bad at accent learning, and I’ll never sound like a native English speaker…”
A couple of minutes later I started analysing the whole thing, and here’s what I realized.
The video I got commented on was recorded WITHOUT any preparation or warm-up at all. I just turned my camcorder on, and started speaking to see how good I am at speaking with my target accent without prepping up.
I watched my video right after I recorded it and my British Accent sounded OK to me, however, when I went back to it today, I realized that it wasn’t anywhere near as good as my normal RP videos which have been recorded after some warming-up has been done.
That would provide a partial explanation as to why the commentator in question felt I was struggling to put on the British accent without much success.
Other than that, there’s always the chance that some people will have strong opinions on your pronunciation no matter how good it is.
Here’s a positive comment I received on one of my accent videos; the commentator is a native British English speaker:
And here’s a comment I got by another native British speaker:
Do you really think all these people where just trying to be nice and didn’t want to admit that in reality my British accent is total crap?
Well, for some reason or another I don’t want to believe that. I don’t think anyone would be bothered posting any comments at all were my RP as bad as I was lead to believe by this last commentator, so I’ll give him the benefit of doubt because he hadn’t seem my previous British Accent videos!
Just got a comment on this video on YouTube, here it is:
Turns out my British accent isn’t that bad at all, so I guess I should probably make it my habit to review my own advice on how to combat negativity more often! 😀