[Foundation-l] Throwing some data onto the flamefest fire (was: English Wikipedia ethnocentric policy affects other communities)

Milos Rancic millosh at gmail.com
Sat Dec 23 05:12:14 UTC 2006

On 12/23/06, James Hare <messedrocker at gmail.com> wrote:
> Pros:
> - Less of a technical issue on English Wikipedia for those who don't have
> the ability (or permission) to install new fonts

This may be solved like TeX: if you don't have a font, you may choose
to see images.

> - Allows people of the community to identify people with a name they can
> understand, as opposed to using what they will just see as squiggly lines.

The primary goal of Wikipedia is to make content, not to identify
people with a name that can be understandable. I don't see a reason
why it is so hard and/or so scary to click on some Chinese characters.

> Being able to fight vandalism was a pro, but then technical fixes came along
> that prohibited mixing different writing scripts.

Vandalism is not related to script and I may imagine a lot of very
hard vandalisms without any usage of letters other then A, B and C
(capital, of course).

> I've stated this many times -- I like the idea of system transliteration for
> each wiki. Or at least a way to have an identity that's different from the
> username you log in with, so you can have a uniform username but you can be
> identified with what will be considered a comprehendable name.

As I mentioned, transliteration doesn't work because some languages
require *transcription* and/or *translation*. For example, even your
name may be compltetely transliterated in Serbian (Јамес), it is
completely irregular and your name *has to be* trancribed (into

* * *

However, I think that the story about non-Latin characters in user
names is not supported by majority of English Wikipedia community, as
well as we should check it. If it is not supported, story and wasting
time is over; if it supports, we should think then what to do next.

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