The world needs one common language. There used to be several candidates for this role, so one would speak one or two local native languages and then several so-called "foreign languages" learned at school. This multi-lingual state of the world was inefficient and it was a matter of time before one of the competing languages dominates. English essentially won this competition. There are no longer any relevant foreign languages. There is only one global language and that language is English.
If you don't believe me, consider the following:
- English has 400M native speakers and estimated 1.1B second language speakers. The interesting thing here is not the total but rather the ratio of non-native to native speakers.
- English is the new lingua franca of the world, broken or not. International business communication is almost exclusively in English.
- Scientific papers are published almost exclusively in English. Using any other language means massive loss of citations, something researchers cannot afford.
- English is the language of technology. Software is English-first and only then localized.
- English is the language of experts who need one global terminology for their field. As a consequence, educational resources in specialized fields are also primarily in English.
- English is used by global communities that are not large enough to break into national groups. Even where national communities exists, English is used for exchange between them on global forums.
- Diplomatic communication, even Chinese and Russian, is conducted in English, especially in person.
- Even though European Union tries hard to be multi-lingual, only a few languages are spoken in Brussels and English clearly dominates, because many national representatives do not speak any other language (besides their native language obviously) and interpreters are a hindrance.
You might think this is temporary and another language can unseat English. But would-be alternative global language must be heavily subsidized, because network effects strongly favor the incumbent. Only China is rich enough to make such a massive investment and I can tell you there is zero chance the world is going to learn Chinese, one of the hardest languages in the world with its syllable-level writing system, when the world is already struggling with simple English. English is not only already dominant, it is going to stay that way.