[Foundation-l] Language Prevention Committee created

Andre Engels andreengels at gmail.com
Thu Mar 29 23:41:54 UTC 2007

2007/3/27, Sabine Cretella <sabine_cretella at yahoo.it>:

> Andre, now that reaction is a bit silly, don't you think? We are not
> fighting here - we are trying to make sure projects really have a good
> chance.

By not letting them start?!?

People can work on the contents on incubator without problems,
> but it is also relevant to make sure the UI is there.

If they can work on the incubator without problems, surely they can also
work on a separate wiki without problems?

Then again: when we started nap.wikipedia people wanted to create
> contents, I was the only admin that could edit the UI, but I had my
> problems with that since I had to edit everything more than once not
> being native, but the only techie that was around for that langauge.
> Still we have some localization problems since not anybody can work on
> it and who does has limited time - just not even a handful of people can
> edit the UI ... so Incubator (and for now Betawiki) is a great place to
> make sure things work out fine.

Well, nobody stops you from doing the same thing on your own wiki, do they?

As for Neapolitan now it is too late to
> get people to work there. They simply don't see the reason why they
> should do things there and so we are still with a half-way (in the mean
> time probably 3/4) localized UI - and that does not help the language.

So it is the fault of the neapolitans to not see  that they should do it? If
they don't see the need, might that not mean that there is less need than
you consider it to be?

Small wikipedias do work and function in a different way than big ones
> do. There are often language issues related as well: what if there is
> programming needed to get the chars right? Even one and half a year
> after having started the nap.wikipedia we still don't have a solution
> for the '' (double quote that causes italic script) that we find within
> a word - we have to write &#39; instead of the single quote ... that is
> plain annoying. And: I am the only one who could hurry after the
programmers to do that stuff and I don't have time to do so ... so we go
> along with that. By requiring certain stuff to be done first you avoid
> that kind of mess and you avoid people to have that really bad
> experience that new editors get annoyed since they cannot write like
> they should/would. By doing the localization + some creation of contents
> first: well we can make sure newbies do not have to deal with such
> issues. (how would I love to see English with such an issue ... and how
> would I like to see how long it takes to have it solved).

Well, if  the Neapolitan Wikipedia  asks to be put on hold until the double
quote problem is solved, surely people will listen? Because basically,
that's what's happening to the wanted new Wikipedias - they are being put on
hold until their problems are solved. So if that's best for them, won't it
be best for nap: too?

It is not just a "we play the hard way" thigie - it is a "let's make
> sure that potential editors that are not wikiphile find their way
> through the wiki" and let the communities build up easier. Of course in
> the beginning all seems to be somewhat more difficult, but all that is
> done before the project is acutally an own wiki will help it afterwards
> to have a nicer way to go, an easier job to build communities etc.

If they start now, they have more time to do that. Instead we are keeping
them third-class citizens 'for their own good'. Well, I don't see any good
in it. If people are having problems getting their way around the wiki and
building a community if there is no localization, they will have even more
problems doing so when they have only the incubator to go with.

I repeat: we are not sacrificing any language, we are trying to make
> sure they can survive and grow more easily.

Well, helping them to survive and grow is NOT done best by keeping them
small until we think they are ready to grow, in my opinion. Why not give
them the little opportunities we can give them now now, and the greater
opportunities we can give them later later? Won't 6 months of slow growth
followed by a bloom work better than 6 months of doing nothing followed by a

Who knows me should know
> that I am all for new languages, but it does not make sense if the
> communities afterwards have to hassle with thousands of issues they were
> not aware of and they don't even know with who to talk.

And how is forcing them to wait helping one iota with that?

These people
> most of the time are simply left alone and that has nothing to do with
> "our own little fights".

 So in other words, now to start you have to have finished already? Is that
what you're saying?

If you need an example for a wikipedia that instead of localising in
> their language localises into another one ... just to have something
> similar since there seems to be nobody able to create their UI, please
> let me know ... I will happily show you the project. I did not bring up
> that issue up to now, but probably it is time to do so in order to show
> why certain requests are legitimate.

What does that show? To me, what it shows is that people want the best they
can get, and prefer to work in a non-ideal interface rather than working in
nothing at all. If you know such a wikipedia, why not offer them to close
down their Wikipedia and reopen it once there's a good localisation? That's
what you are doing with the new Wikipedias, basically.

Thank you for your understanding

No, I still don't understand a iota. Yes, I do understand that having a
localized interface is a good thing, and that it's a good thing to have
people work on that. But I do not understand that it is so important that
it's better to tell people to wait for it than to have them happily work
with something subobtimal.

Andre Engels, andreengels at gmail.com
ICQ: 6260644  --  Skype: a_engels

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