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Crikey, Peppa Pig Is Causing Kids to Speak in British Accents!

Photo: Rob Stothard/Getty Images

Oi, well would you get a look at this, mate! According to parents on Twitter, kids are speaking with slight British accents because they’re watching too much of the British animated children’s series Peppa Pig. Crikey! Isn’t this just uh buh-rilliant, ehh? I’m bloody knackered, mate, due to all of this bollocks. Smashing!

Peppa Pig, for those who are not familiar, is a series that follows a female pig named Peppa as she lives life with her friends and family. In case you want to check it out, here is a YouTube clip of the show that lasts for an hour and 48 minutes:

Apparently, across the United States kids are watching Peppa Pig and then saying things like, “oh dadd-ay, may we go on holiday, please?” The British accent phenomenon is being documented by the parents of Peppa-lovers on Twitter using the hashtag #PeppaEffect:

Romper’s Janet Manley spoke with Roberto Rey Agudo, the language program director at Dartmouth College, about why exposure to Peppa Pig might cause this variation in the way Peppa Pig–loving children speak. He said it’s likely they’re not processing American English and British English as distinct languages.

“For example,” Manley writes, “[Agudo’s] daughter, who is bilingual, will ask her grandmother to read Spanish and English books, without realizing they are in different languages.” They might notice a difference in choice of words, Agudo explained, or “in the pronunciation of certain sounds, vowels, what happens to Rs after vowels,” but they don’t necessarily associate those things with a particular accent.

As for why the parents aren’t also taking like Peppa? “Grown-ups have less neuroplasticity to adopt an accent,” Agudo said. Huh. Tell that to Madonna!

Is your child part of the #PeppaEffect? If so, that sounds adorable, and my advice is maybe you can talk to a few other parents with Peppa babies and have the babies start a baby Sex Pistols cover band called Peppa Pistols.

Let me know if you do!

Peppa Pig Is Causing Kids to Speak in British Accents