A distincitive dialect of American English that differs from general American English by way of pronunciation, vocabulary, phrasing, and vocal inflection. The stereotypical accent (which is becomingly increasingly rare) is often associated with the borough of Brooklyn however is no more prevalent in Brooklyn than in any other borough. Rhoticising of words (dropping of R's) is seldom found in newer generation natives of New York City and the 'aw' or 'oa' sound is also becoming less prevalent. Orange, horrible, majority, forest etc. are words that are almost always pronounced with the same syllable in hot, pot etc. Words such as Harris and Jared are pronounced with less stress on the r (the ha in Harris for example is pronounced much the same way that it is hat).
Native New Yorkers wait on line rather than in line and use vocabulary such as sneakers and soda in preference over running shoes and pop. Stoop is also exclusive to New York English and was borrowed from the Dutch. The word American is often pronounced with a u rather than an e (Amurican). Words in a sentence often run into one another and it is generally agreed that some (but not all) New Yorkers speak in a very non-distinguished manner. th's for example often sound closer to d's but often lie somewhere in between.
The accent was built up from older generation Americans imitating European settlers. One of the most notable influences were in fact the British. Though Americans made a conscious decision to make their brand of English noticeably different from the British, many features of British English snuck back into New York English. Because British English is non-rhotic (r's are often not pronounced), New Yorkers developed a habit of leaving r's off of words where it would seem ridiculous to the average American. Also words in a stereotypical New York accent can be very close to British pronunciation.
Talk, Water, Walk, Caught, Taught, Law, All, Audio etc.
It is suspected but will never be confirmed that because British migrants were of low social standing, features of their English were also assimilated. For example time may often sound like toime for some New Yorkers and this is faintly similar to working class London English.
Another influence on the accent was the Dutch. Most notably in the slanting back of flat a's. Bad then may sound more like bed and bag like beg. This is also found in sections of north eastern New Jersey. Many other Europeans may have inadvertently influenced New Yorkers speech patterns but the origins of many features may never be traced back to their original source.
The accent is highly stigmatized in American culture and is closely associated with things such as hip-hop music, mobsters, and the working class in general. The heaviest accents are receding quickly which is shame as it has been a focal point of NYC culture for many years. Not too long from now the accent will be a distant memory and all Americans will speak a generic form of English often deemed the 'correct' way of speaking. What a shame.
Celebrities with authentic accents to check for. The degrees of the accents vary significantly.
Turtle from Entourage
Victoria Gotti and her kids
And shitloads of others I can't think of right now. New York English all the way baby.