WaniKani should forgive the long U sound when we know the word

Yeah, I recently read a book aimed at first graders, just to see what it would be like, and the lack of kanji was definitely annoying.

Also, SO MUCH onomatopoeia…


Same. I tried it once because I wanted to start with the absolutest of absolutes when it comes to japanese reading and I couldn’t get past the first sentence. Extremely upsetting Lol

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Reminds me of when I tried to play a Pokemon game in Japanese. Took me a lot more to read that if the text had proper kanji in it.


As much as it sucks, you’re just going to have to learn to remember which words use short or long vowel sounds. And I also think that stuff like とお vs. とう is annoying as hell too. I’ve on more than one occasion tripped up on words like 十日 and 通り for that reason.

For the most part I haven’t had a problem with remembering long vs. short vowels, except for cases where a kanji has multiple readings where literally the only difference is the length of the vowel (like for example 由 can be either ゆ or ゆう and I always grimaced when I wrongly put ゆうらい instead of ゆらい for 由来.)

Though at least in the scope of WK, I don’t remember kanji like that being super common (at least up through level 26, which is as far as I got before I reset.) Honestly I tend to run into more trouble with kanji that have readings with the same vowel sound but a different consonant sound (like with 大 I get だい and たい mixed up annoyingly often.)


The trick to remembering that is that it’s おう far more often than おお, so all you really need to do is memorise the exceptions. 遠い and 通り and 氷 and 頬 and such.


A lot of the mistakes I make are due to the う sound.

My last nemesis was : 受. I kept writing じゅう… Took me while but I have defeated that foe. Take your time and slay them one by one. That’s the good things about the SRS system. It spots your weaknesses and relentlessly attacks you.

It is not a good idea to take a shortcut and not learning the proper pronunciation. It is like people learning Chinese without paying attention to the tones. It matters.


That’s probably the best analogy I’ve seen. :+1:




Kind of annoying, but understandable based on context.


It’s an elongated vowel so yep I changed it intentionally.

You missed へ and 田中 feels weird since it’s not.

I just left へ as is, I don’t know why I didn’t change it. And I added the あ intentionally because it makes it weird. My point was that Japanese sounds weird and wrong if you don’t pay attention to where double vowels are, whether you’re adding them or removing them.


It might be strange to see such a mistake in writing, but it’s very common beginner speech.

Oh absolutely. That’s what I was going for with たなあか. It sounds like you’re speaking in an American accent. But it sounds terribly wrong if you picture two high school kids saying it.


Let’s ask the people who invented the Japanese language.

They say no.


I don’t know why, but the most one egregious one to me is デート.

Also, I see what you did there sneaking in 股間する. :joy:

Well played.


You could always use the double-check script to set it as correct when you feel like you knew it but forgot the long vowel. Obviously be careful with it though, it can be easy to say “ehhh I knew that” and click it even though you might not really have remembered it. In your case though if you really don’t care about the long vowel you can use it for that.

But if your taking the time to learn the word you might as well fail it once or twice and learn the actual word. Who knows, you may end up wanting to take the language further down the line and wish you would’ve remembered those long vowels xD


I get what you’re saying, and maybe my story will help you as I have gone through something similar.

With German...

When I learned German, my goal was conversational fluency as fast as possible. I made a conscious decision to ignore vowel length and article genders so that I could just speak without thinking for ages about making it perfect. Vowel length is important in German, but less so than in Japanese (my subjective opinion, it feels like it affects far fewer words). On the one hand, I achieved conversational fluency very quickly - about 6 weeks of living there being immersed, and a C1 level around 6-9 months. Fast forward 10 years. Despite now knowing vowel length is more important than I realised, I have incredible difficulty improving it. I lack the foundations to hear/say vowel length properly. It causes confusion and distracts people from what I want to say. My theory is, because I can get across what I need to, my brain just doesn’t engage with it. The deeper centers of my brain don’t care that at a higher level I want to improve on this part of my German.

With Japanese

With Japanese, I decided to care about vowel length from the beginning, but I was still working toward conversational fluency and allowed myself to make mistakes. The difference was, I just decided to care about vowel length. And it’s made all the difference. I notice that I soak it up in Japanese much faster than in German. It’s like, any time I see a word in Japanese, my brain happily opens up an additional bucket to store knowledge for that word that includes vowel length. I never created space for that bucket in the first place with German, so now there is no room for additional buckets in my German knowledge center. I’ll stop saying bucket now.

So I suggest you simply care about vowel length rather than see it as your nemesis.

Here is why that is important for your brain and happiness

See it as an important thing and that simple change will help your brain to pay attention and remember whether that extra u belongs there or not. If you miss a card for vowel length, instead of anger (which kicks the brain into a state that is less conducive to learning), think, ah, well, someday when I’m saying this word in conversation I’ll need to remember to say it like xuxx. Eventually it will sink in. Treat WK like deliberate and strict practice for this. In other resources, go easier on yourself. Pay attention to vowel length, but in conversation and reading practice, put your attention more on fluency and quantity. Spending a lot of time reading along (in your head, or out loud shadowing) with a native audio speaker reading aloud helps a lot. It reinforces your feeling for pronouncing the words. Which means when they come up in WK, it’s so easy because you know it is that word.

Also keep in mind, for some people, it’s easier to learn words in WK if you already have a stronger foundation in vocab and grammar outside of WK. I don’t know if this applies to you, but maybe spending more time with other resources will help support your overall knowledge and make WK easier.

The moral of my story is, the Japanese language is what it is, and WK is highly unlikely to change based on your request. So to make your learning happier for the long term, I have suggested a way to change your perspective.


I had a conversation last weekend with someone with a thick french accent who said “and then he bit her”.

it took us a minute or two for us to realise he meant “beat” and that this wasn’t supposed to be a funny story.

make of that what you will…


What are those words in Japanese (bit, beat)? I could look them up but since every language have synonyms I know I probably won’t find what I’m looking for -.-