18 November 2012

Abbreviations on TV

In a previous posting (here), I discussed abbreviations found in Malay reference materials such as dictionaries, and I suggested that the news channel Astro Awani uses similar abbreviations in its subtitles.

When checking on this, I found I was wrong: Astro Awani in fact always uses full spelling for subtitles when the language spoken by the person in the news is not Malay. However, abbreviations do sometimes occur in the scrolling news feed at the bottom of the screen. I have noticed the following:

  • dgn : dengan ('with')
  • dlm : dalam ('in')
  • dpt : dapat ('get')
  • drpd : daripada ('from')
  • kg : kampung ('village')
  • klhkn : kalahkan ('defeat')
  • kpd : kepada ('to')
  • krn : kerana ('because')
  • M'sia : Malaysia
  • org : orang ('people')
  • pd : pada ('at')
  • p'raya : pilihan raya ('election')
  • sbg : sebagai ('as')
  • S'pura : Singapura
  • utk : untuk ('for')
  • wjr : wajar ('should')

Most of these are prepositions (dgn, dlm, drpd, pd, utk, ...). They are similar to those used in the dictionary, and they adopt the same conventions (vowels are omitted unless they are the fist letter; 'n' is omitted if it is before a consonant). But a few are verbs (dpt, klhkn, wjr) or nouns (org, p'raya), and there are some countries (M'sia, S'pura), so it seems that the scope is a bit wider. Perhaps it is not surprising that these abbreviations are adopted when the message has to be conveyed in a single line.