Very occasionally I stumble across a blog that’s so long-established, and yet so essential, I wonder how on earth the Internet managed without it. The current example: the blog of Professor John Wells. John Wells is one of the UK’s most well-known phoneticians – a person that studies the sounds of speech. He also happens to be a Welsh speaker, and happens to be a thoroughly learned, thoroughly helpful, thoroughly decent man.
His weblog is certainly not for everyone (if you didn’t do a double-take at this post’s title, you may not appreciate his writings). But it’s difficult not to like a blog that’s discussed phantom ‘r’s, Gordon Brown’s hypercorrect public speaking, Bangor linguistic beards and Charles Wesley’s hymn of ‘in-fine-ight’ grace – all during the past fortnight. And it’s a warm read, too: true that his blog lacks comments, permalinks, and all the normal trappings of modern-day web diaries, but somehow it’s also escaped the incestuous reciprocal linking, the loudness and the sheer noisiness of Blogs These Days.