[Foundation-l] English Wikipedia ethnocentric policy affects other communities

Gregory Maxwell gmaxwell at gmail.com
Fri Dec 22 23:26:55 UTC 2006

On 12/22/06, Gerard Meijssen <gerard.meijssen at gmail.com> wrote:
> As to the seriousness of the problem, consider what Aphaia said about
> this and how pained she is as a result.

The case Aphaia brought is unfortunate, but it's a single example. I
know there are a few more, but there are not many so far. I think that
situation would best be handled right now by simply by creating an
exception people who are active on projects which use such scripts.

>You call yourself a monoglot,

A statement of fact, although one which I hope is not always true.

> the problem is that you only see what you have learned to see. The
> problem of languages other than some 100 of the more economically
> important is that  they are not supported on the Internet. The majority
> of these are in Latin. The wish to make the Internet accessible in other
> scripts than Latin is another big battle field.

Please do not misunderstand me.
I do not think that, for example, Chineese is unimportant. I think it
is very important. However, I do think that chineese *usernames* on
English Wikipedia are fairly unimportant for two reasons:

1) The number of non-ascii names which have been created is very small
compared to the total.
2) On Chinese wikipedia, most of the active usernames appear to be in
latin script, [http://zh.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Recentchanges]. ..
I checked the twenty most recent blue linked zh latin script
usernames, and only three had enwiki accounts.

I think that a local-script usernames policy would actually be helpful
for other languages to keep their UI from being constantly disrupted
by latin characters. :)

> With SUL things will be different in the WMF, this is when it will be
> possible to find where a user is active, this is when Anthere's proposal
> can be implemented. Let us hope that Brion will be able to finish this soon.

Yes, if we can see that a user is active elsewhere it will be a very good thing.

> So yes, let us work together but do not deny that the problem is
> serious, it is very much outside of your terms of reference.

I trust that you will always remind me when I am missing something
because of my background.


More information about the foundation-l mailing list