Is the English language being "dumbed down" as it goes global? Not necessarily. Newspapers and magazines have always tried to be reader-friendly, to their particular readers, at least. So an article by HL Mencken, a famous American journalist from the early 20th century, contains fewer long words than a New York Times column by William Safire, who began his career in the mid-1950s.
But first let's look at some newspapers and magazines. This is how The Straits Times, The New York Times, The Guardian, The New Yorker and The Economist fared in the reading test.
It breaks down the words by the number of syllables, shows the average number of words in a sentence, and gives the Flesch Reading Ease score and the Gunning Fog Index score. The higher the reading ease score, the easier it is to read, and the higher the "fog index" score, the harder it is to understand. You can see more on the tests on the Juicy Studio page and in Wikipedia.