[Foundation-l] Montenegrin request for new language wikipedia

Bence Damokos bdamokos at gmail.com
Sun Dec 3 19:37:54 UTC 2006

I might have been a bit off with the English example.

I'm no expert so I can't tell how big a difference there is between the
English variations, and is  any difficulty in understanding of an article is
caused by that.

Also I can't tell, would the peoples of the Balkan region really understand
each other if they all chose to speak their own language consistently
choosing "dialect" words over commons ones.

Anyway, its for the Serbs and Montenegrins to know if a similar system would
be okay for them. Also I can't tell if the two people can work together in
the same wiki. (From some of the messages posted here it seems the Serbian
isn't that open a community, but I can't tell how widespread the
anti-Montenegrin sentiment is in the community)

Also I don't think it would be fair to allow 3 dialects but deny a 4 , if a
mistake was made, why should the 4th "suffer" from it...

Of course there might be a dilemma, that whats a wiki worth if it will start
by importing all articles from the Croatian or Serbian  wiki (thats what I
would do...), this makes creating a fork not a so good idea.

The solution could be purely technical, make it possible with advanced regex
dictionaries and user input to have all the dialect versions of an article.
Also improve the switching from Cyrillic script to Latin as there are many
places (especially talk pages), where parts of the text don't get

Bence Damokos
On 12/3/06, Birgitte SB <birgitte_sb at yahoo.com> wrote:
> --- Bence Damokos <bdamokos at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Hi!
> > I am an outsider in this dispute, but I would like
> > to give my opinion on the
> > state of these four languages as I see them, after
> > learning for some time
> > Croatian, and having spoken with a friend who is
> > more knowledgable than me.
> >
> > What I see is that Montenegrin uses the ijekavica
> > dialect of the so-called
> > Serbo-Croatian language (which I think is THE
> > artificial one from the 5
> > mentioned), while the Serbians use the ekavica
> > dialect. This makes every
> > second word different. Even though either is
> > acceptable, you wouldn't wanna
> > mix them in an article (as mixing British or
> > American spelling: no one would
> > really notice), it would stop your "train of
> > thought" to decode each woord
> > and decide which dialect it was written in.
> > Requiring the use of either one
> > would be unfair, and would violate the free speech
> > rights of either of them,
> > also it would lead to some more unnecessary tension.
> >
> > Croatian uses latin script, and ijekavica (at least
> > the official dialect),
> > so Montenegrins could integrate there? Wrong.
> > Montenegrin has many words
> > borrowed from Turkish that Croatians might not
> > understand, or would
> > constantly replace with their Croatian counterparts,
> > or just remove from
> > articles.
> >
> > The difference of words and dialect is a main
> > difference between Serbian in
> > Croatian. Apart from the dialet problem mentioned
> > with the Montenegrins,
> > Serbian language tends to use Western words by
> > transliterating it
> > phonetically into Serbian language, while Croatian
> > tends to invent their own
> > words. Compromise on this ground would either ignite
> > tension, or be a factor
> > in "deteriorating" Croatian language by introducing
> > foreign words, for which
> > there is already a Croatian version in use.
> >
> > Bosnian: I'm no expert here, why this is a separate
> > language :), if not for
> > political reasons. I guess they have many Turkish
> > words too. Anyway, if
> > there is a Bosnian wiki, a Montenegrin one could
> > also be.
> >
> > Also, if I'm correct Montenegro had its state
> > television in the Serbia and
> > Montenegro era, that was broadcast it Montenegrin
> > (language/dialect).
> >
> > In conclusion, Serbo-Croatian was an invented
> > language, without machine
> > translation between the ijekavica/ekavica/ikavica
> > dialects choosing either
> > that is not the official in any a part of the region
> > would lead to tensions,
> > and the difference in words might also lead to
> > misunderstandings, or at
> > least heart national feelings if a "dialect version
> > of a word" is changed to
> > an other "for better understanding".
> >
> > Anyway, I hope I didn't upset any one, and that I
> > wasn't factually wrong, or
> > misleading.
> >
> > Regards, Bence Damokos
> >
> > ps. OFF. why are there so many wikis in Italy?
> > _______________________________________________
> > foundation-l mailing list
> > foundation-l at wikimedia.org
> >
> http://mail.wikipedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
> >
> I believe there is misunderstang over how the
> variations of English are handled on en.WP.  There is
> no mixing of the variations (which are more than just
> spelling), and people would definately notice if there
> was.  The way it works is that in an article on
> England, British conventions are used.  In an article
> on America, the American conventions are used.  In an
> article on Canada, Canadian conventions are used.
> Whenever there is a general article common to all
> areas (such as Dog) the original editor who started
> the article chooses which conventions to  use.  No one
> is allowed to go around changing the grammer and
> spelling to their prefered standards on general
> articles.  In article where the title would be
> different (i.e. Petrol/Gasoline) a redirect is made to
> the original title.  Of course people have not always
> liked this method and have tried to go around changing
> standards, but they are stopped and everyone moves on.
> I don't know these languages myself and I could be
> wrong here, but I do not see any significant
> differences from the situation in English.
> BirgitteSB
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