posted by user17643 on October 30, 2011 | 8 comments
I'd love to subscribe to Popup Cantonese (I want to support what you're doing here), but with only five Advanced lessons (the latest of which is from June) and no Intermediate ones, it seems I wouldn't get much out of it, as these are the two levels I feel would be useful to me. So what are the plans? When can I expect new Advanced and Intermediate material?
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chiuyan on January 9, 2012 | reply
I just wanted to comment that written Cantonese isn't that rare (sure, compared to written standard Chinese it is less common, but rare?).

Magazines like New Monday (新monday), Sudden (忽然1周), Yes, etc. are almost entirely in written Cantonese and all of these magazines are weekly--that's hundreds of pages of written Cantonese per week :)

Magazines like Touch (東Touch) or Next (壹週刊) also contain some written Cantonese, and even the little daily free newspaper they hand out in the HK MTR has a few articles in written Cantonese.

Some movies like Kung Fu Panda or Juno also have Cantonese subtitles, and some older HK movies do too. Song Lyrics from bands like Wynners, ToNick, HardPack, Ping Pung, MastaMic, LMF, etc. are also often very colloquial, so you can read along with the singing :)

Written Cantonese is pretty common on the internet too. Wikipedia has a Cantonese version (, although many of the articles are very short. Hong Kong based forums like or have a lot of written Cantonese, granted the writing may not be "correct".

Greenwood press has a few books in written Cantonese, and as described in this thread (,110693) there are some comics and other writings that use Cantonese too.

But none of these resources "teach" you Cantonese, of course. They are just supplements or aids. We need websites like Popup Cantonese for the actual instruction and explanations.

If you want to talk about rare written materials, try studying Hokkien :P
sokuban111 on January 9, 2012 | reply
I'll just second this whole thread, especially the latest post.

The advanced lessons don't teach anything and are just pure listening practice. Ok, they aren't bad, but you can get this kind of listening practice anywhere very easily. What's important for teaching is to actually... explain stuff. This is done very well in the beginner/elementary lessons, and if you could find someway to do the same for intermediate/advanced lessons... without being too simple somehow, it would be perfect.

As for subscribing, I want to support your cause too, but no offence but nobody in their right mind would subscribe to this site in its current state. A one year subscription costs like $50USD, yet there is barely any content worth paying for here. Even if your beginner/elementary lessons are pretty good, anybody studying seriously enough to be willing to pay money for the subscription would expect to be bored of beginner/elementary lessons before their subscription finishes. If you don't have Intermediate lessons coming out on a timely basis, what's the point of spending money on a subscription then? Surely people who subscribe would want to improve no?

Advanced lessons don't count period because they aren't lessons.

Yes, this is more whiny nagging, but I do think this site has a lot of potential, you just need to fulfill it!
trevelyan on November 6, 2011 | reply
We're still figuring things out, but trying to release content fairly regularly and prepping the next version of the site. I'd say more advanced stuff will happen before we start the intermediate materials. Hopefully we'll be in a position to start releasing more intermediate stuff at the beginning of next year.

The next lesson will be up in a day or two, anyway. Thanks for the patience.



redgeomancer on November 2, 2011 | reply
Love the site; I've got the same question!
user17643 on November 7, 2011 | reply
Awesome! I'll probably sign up once you get that going. I loves me some Cantonese and it'll be swell to get into this community. Thanks, David!
user17643 on January 9, 2012 | reply
The advanced lessons do have something that isn't always easy to find: transcripts. Since written Cantonese is so rare, it's difficult to find natural spoken Cantonese with transcripts, and if these sorts of lessons came out on a regular basis, I'd probably still find it worth subscribing to. But without a regular schedule, with new material on at least a weekly basis, I'm still hesitating.

I signed up for the one-week trial on CantoneseClass101 and I've returned here in hope of better stuff, since the quality of their transcripts is abysmal.
user17643 on January 5, 2012 | reply
So it's the beginning of the new year now. Any more details on when we can expect some intermediate lessons? The advanced lessons that are availible are pretty good, but they're mostly listening practice, and I can get loads of that for free by listening to RTHK. I'd love some more in-depth discussions of phrases and words, with examples of how to use them. I could probably use the advanced lessons, too, if some of them discussed language rather than just culture. Maybe some advanced lessons on common sayings, colloquial expressions, 成語 or other more advanced language? At this point, Elementary is just too basic for me.

There's a market share to grab here, as CantoneseClass101 has also been focusing on beginner and advanced classes. They just published their first Lower Intermediate lesson, but I'm going to give my money to whoever starts publishing Intermediate level lessons *on a regular basis*. One lesson every other month is not something I'm going to pay for.

Still want to say, though: Love the site. Take this is eager waiting rather than whiny nagging.
remora9595 on July 8, 2012 | reply
Love the advanced lessons, the hosts are hilarious! Any chance there'll be a spinoff podcast in a similar format?