The arguments inherent in the policy are not affected by the "fear mongering" by some. At  the same time in the later suggestions there is nothing new. 

From my perspective there is no reason to revisit the criteria for a new Wikipedia.

On Wed, 8 Sept 2021 at 02:00, Phake Nick <c933103@gmail.com> wrote:
The RFC in past have suffered from fear-mongering by some users on multiple Wikiprojects both internally on sites like Chinese Wikipedia and Chinese Wikisource and then also via some other channels, describing the RFC as a conspiracy to enable the creation of a Literal Chinese Wikisource and to tear apart Chinese Wikimedian communities, despite later clarification that the RFC isn't intended to alter the circumstances around Wikisource since the current language policy already allow creation of Wikisource in ancient languages, yet such misunderstanding generated a lot of unnecessary debate inside the page.

在 2021年9月7日週二 18:44,MF-Warburg <mfwarburg@googlemail.com> 寫道:
News from this RFC. The ultra-long discussion was archived by this user in favour of his new proposal, which already generated much text again.

Am Di., 7. Sept. 2021 um 12:41 Uhr schrieb Jim Killock <jim@killock.org.uk>:
Dear LangCom,

I am a sometime contributor to Latin Wikipedia, Latin Wikisource, and Latin Wikibooks. I feel that my time is well spent doing this, and belong to a community of people who write and use spoken Latin, although my own Latin is still intermediate at this point. However, I can appreciate that Latin takes up a large part of many people’s lives, and thus I suspect this is true for some other ancient languages, which are, in the end, still employed and varifiably so. Thus I am sympathetic to the claims made that some other ancient languages may also have communities in a similar position.

You may have seen that some users have asked for the policy that makes an auto0matic refusal for ‘ancient and historic languages’ to be revisited.

After checking through the rules and procedures, it seems this is something you as a committee need to decide, rather than being a matter of general debate, so I am emailing you to ask you to consider revising the policy, in a manner which allows a little more flexibility for languages which are historic, learnt, but in use.

I think there is some need to do this, as can be seen from your archives, which show that it is hard to achi9eve a consistent approach while constructed alnguages with a body of current usage are allowed, but an ancient language with similar levels of fluent usage, is not allowed. This I note has been a matter of discussion relating to Ancient Greek, for which a discussion is still open.

I drafted a proposal that would try to create consistency between the constructed and ancient language situation, while recognising that most historic languages should not normally qualify for inclusion. Nevertheless, in some important exceptions, where there is a credibly large enough number of language users, with sufficient skill, and attestable external usage of that language,, these languages could be allowed without opening the floodgates, with a well-crated policy.

I would also like the committee to note that I would be happy to help frame this policy in a sensible way, if that is of interest. 

Thank you for your time,


Definition of ancient or historic language[edit]
  1. For Wikimedia projects' purposes, an ancient or historic language is one which
    1. Was used historically and has an extant corpus of works;
    2. Is typically acquired by formal learning;
    3. Is typically fixed in form, eg by grammar rules developed and documented while the language was in common usage;
    4. May or may not not be used in modern linguistic domains, such as: trade; education; academic discourse; music; poetry; religious discourse; etc.
Qualification of an ancient or historic language for a Wiki project[edit]
The same basic eligibility criteria should apply in a similar but somewhat stricter manner than artificial languages, recognising that acquisition is likely to be harder than is typical for constructed languages, but also that acquisition may be more common and resources more developed; and also that practical usage is likely to be lower than for many contemporary natively-acquired languages. 
Therefore I propose that:
  1. Wikis are allowed in ancient or historical languages despite having no native speakers; although these should be on a wiki for the most widely used form of the language, when possible;
  2. There must be evidence of a significant potential readership and evidence of a significant body of competent potential contributors; for instance at least thousands of people trained in writing the language;
  3. There should be a significant historical corpus and usage for modern authors to draw upon, for instance, a large volume of extant texts or a large volume of recordings, sufficient to understand the idiom as well as the grammar of the language; whether generated as an auxiliary language, domain specific language or a native language;
  4. The language must have a reasonable degree of contemporary usage as determined by discussion. (Some recognition criteria include, but are not limited to: independently proved number of speakers or writers, use as an auxiliary or domain-specific language outside of online communities created solely for the purpose, usage outside of Wikimedia, publication of works in the language for general sale, publication of academic papers in the language, availability of courses or training which aim at fluent compositional or oral usage.)

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