[Journal of the Simplified Spelling Society, 1992/1 pp18-19, later designated J12]
[Also on this page: Kanadian Langwaje, 1933 Cut Spelling?]

[See Journal and Newsletter articles by Ken Ives.]

American Literacy Council.

Ken Ives.

The American Literacy Council is successor to the 1876 International Convention for the Amendment of English Orthography, which developed into the Spelling Reform Association. In 1906 the Simplified Spelling Board was establisht, on Andrew Carnegie's promise of annual funding. In 1920, with the end of Carnegie funding, the Spelling Reform Association was reactivated. In 1930 it produced a phonemic alphabet, and later World English Spelling, close to New Spelling. Following the death of Godfrey Dewey, it was reorganized as the Phonemic Spelling Council, later renamed American Language Academy, later changed to American Literacy Council.

The Council publisht a Fonetic Spelling Dictionary in 1986, and more recently a literacy software program called Sound Speler. Its December 10, 1991 Newsletter reports primarily on the latter:

The Council has been negotiating with several education publishers that have expressed interest in distributing the SoundSpeler literacy software. SoundSpeler, a technological culmination of many years. of orthographic research, is a significant, if unassuming way of introducing the public to simpler spelling.

During 1991, much time and effort has been spent debugging, personalizing and polishing the program, and testing by Columbia University Teachers College has just begun.

Of the several software distributors that have expressed some interest, three are ready to market the program.

One, Optimum Resources, of Norfolk, Connecticut wants to:

1. add exercises to test the user's spelling,

2. divide the program into grade/reading levels, and

3. provide a lesson management system which can track the progress of users by name.

Another, Instructional/Communications Technology of Huntington, Long Island (NY), will:

1. have a non-exclusive distribution right for three years starting in November, 1991 and

2. list SoundSpeler in the current and subsequent catalogs across the three year period.

A third, Gessler Publishing Company of New York City, is a major player in the foreign language market and hopes to add SoundSpeler to their small but growing list of ESL (English as a Second Language) materials. Their catalog goes out to 150,000 schools, libraries and other institutions, and should give SoundSpeler and the Council a higher profile.

While the program's ultimate objective is to promote simpler spelling, SoundSpeler and its related spinoffs - if interest on the part of education distributors is an indication - will also be a primary source of revenue in the future. Due in part to the abstract nature of our long-term strategies, some conventional sources of revenue, such as grants from corporations and foundations, have not been forthcoming.

Even so, other revenue sources, namely the membership drive and renewal, should provide new blood in terms of members and needed membership capital.

A second endeavor has been the placement of 'Fonetic Speling' Menu (i.e. the 'Fonetic Speling' Dictionary on floppy/hard disk) in several shareware catalogs. 'Shareware' is a "try before you buy' software marketing concept that allows consumers to obtain copies of programs for evaluation.

Consumers may test new programs, such as 'Fonetic Speling' Menu, in the privacy of their own personal computer. Shareware programs require payment to authors if found useful and if used beyond a reasonable period.

Thus, at little cost to ALC, the nuts and bolts of spelling reform are beginning to circulate thru catalogs of 40 software distributors in the U.S., Canada, Britain, and Australia to an audience of well over 4,000,000 educated, English-speaking adults.

Potential user-fee revenue notwithstanding, three points should be considered:

1. 'Fonetic Speling' Menu, complete with running comparison of 'Fonetic' and English, allows the user to analyze our orthography and translate text from English to 'Fonetic'. Thus, FSM is far more 'usable' than the printed 'Fonetic Speling' Dictionary.

2. SoundSpeler receives a significant plug in the FSM. Given shareware's audience, it is not unrealistic to conceive of thousands of users who would, in turn, know someone troubled by English spelling. They could contact us to receive an order form or more information.

3. The Council may obtain the names and addresses of people who have requested the 'Fonetic Speling' Menu. Those names and addresses will be added to the ALC mailing list for future (membership) reference.

President of American Literacy Council is Edward Ronthaler. His assistant is Joseph Little. The Advisory Board includes Harvie Barnard and Helen Bonema Bisgard, who were advisors to Spelling Progress Bulletin when it was publisht by the late Newell Tune. Also on the Advisory Board is John Henry Martin, author of the IBM "Writing to Read" program.

See links.

[Journal of the Simplified Spelling Society, 1992/1 pp18-19, later designated J12]

Kanadian Langwaje.

The Internasional Union For The Kanadian Langwaje is successor to the Simplified-Speling Sosiety Ov Canada. This organization, headed by Ted Culp, publishes an occasional four page newspaper, at $2 a copy. In 1986 it began to develop its plan, described in 1990, which seems to use International Phonetic values for many vowels. Some of the letter and sound correspondences are:

q, x
taak=talk, athor=author
glas akt
geet = gate, eet = ate
hiit = heet, sliip = sleep
curc=church, benc=bench

NOUNS: Infinitives can be used as nouns, "-ing" forms are abolisht.
ADJECTIVES: Nouns cannot be used as adjectives. Adjective forms end in -ik, -us, -al, -ful, -abel, -nes, -les.
ADVERBS: Add -al to the adjective.
ABBREVIATIONS: These are abolisht.
VERBS: All conjugations are abolisht. This results in phrases like: "she go, he du think".
"Ultimateli, al verbs wil must tu end in - ize/aiz."

Le fransais-torontois.

Under the same authorship, a regularized version of French is also proposed.

NOUNS: These all become neuter.
ARTICLES: Thus these reduce to: "le, une; les, des".
ADJECTIVES: These all have one form, all are singular.
VERBS: use of "etre" is abolisht in favor of "avoir", for past indefinite. Verbal endings in present singular are abolisht. The subjunctive mood also abolisht.
ACCENT MARKS: Two are eliminated now, others later.
SILENT LETTERS: "must to be eliminated".
SPELLING CHANGES: ge/gé → j; ph → f; ç/c/sc → s; qu/que → k, kw; and others.

[Journal of the Simplified Spelling Society, 12, 1992/1 p20]

1933 Cut Spelling?

Jean Hutchins has sent the following list of abbreviated spellings found in House Deeds 1933 Abstract Title, along with their full forms. Measurements for the land used acre, rood, perch. An elderly solicitor commented that when he trained he had to learn all such abbreviations.

shld: should
intt: interest
sd: said
pd: paid
furr: further
subjt: subject
thr: their
hrs: heirs
appt: appointed
rect: receit
acknd: acknowledged
thrby: thereby
thrin: therein
thron: thereon
throf: thereof
thrar: thereafter
thrinbfe: thereinbefore
thrabts: thereabouts
thrto: thereto
whrby: whereby
whrof: whereof
decd: deceased
descd: described
intdd: intended
mentd: mentioned
convd: conveyed
belongg: belonging
havg: having
wtg: writing
docts: documents
sufft: sufficient
Ppal: Principal
Regy: Registry
dely: delivery
Coy: County
Esq: Esquire
Atty: Attorney
stips: stipulations
calr: calendar
pt: part
prodon: production
ppses: purposes
afsd: aforesaid
pursce: pursuance
orwise: otherwise
moys: moneys
admors: administrators
Purr: Purchaser
altd: altered
witht: without
ineumbs: encumbrances
succors: successors
agmnt: agreement
exes: expenses
abt: about
exon: execution
dwg: dwelling
discon: disretion
abstg: abstaining
pce: piece
pcl: parcel
ppty: property
resply: respectively
prems: premises
paymt: payment
site: situate
Mtge: Mortage
Mtgee: Mortgagee
este: estate
parlars: particulars
admst: admeasurement
jt: joint
colrd: coloured
Tree: Trustee
exors: executors
exs: executors
rt: right
bldgs: buildings
sevl: several
diron: direction
benefl: beneficial
covs: convenants
covtd: covenanted
absly: absolutely
contg: containing
Septr: September

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