[Foundation-l] policy on languages without native speakers

Marcus Buck me at marcusbuck.org
Thu Apr 24 15:50:12 UTC 2008

Marcos Cramer hett schreven:
> Currently the language subcommittee decides both about the language proposal policy and about its implemenation in particular cases.
"Separation of powers". At the moment the language subcommittee is 
legislative (it is allowed to change the policy) and judiciary (it 
decides on approving or denying proposals for new projects) at the same 
time. Only the executive (finally creating the projects) lies in the 
hands of the developers.

By the way, if I didn't miss any posts in this lengthy threads regarding 
the language proposal policy, I still didn't get any answers to my 
proposal on <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Slomox/Languages>.
The proposal names criteria for new projects which are completely based 
on decidable facts like size of the potential readership and project 
activity. Criteria like
> * New literature is still being produced and published in the proposed language (whether translated or original)
> * The proposed language is taught in a number of institutions like schools or universities. 
make judgments on the "usefulness" of languages. Many living native 
languages would fail on criteria like those. Of course you could just 
use them for languages without native speakers, but in my opinion a 
"good" rule should work without exceptions and "special rules". "My" 
rules only judge the "potential" of languages to be useful, which is 
much more in line with the aim of "providing" knowledge. (If there are 
_no_ schools and universities in a specific language, this makes a 
Wikipedia even _more_ useful in my opinion, doesn't it? Cause it could 
provide knowledge provided by nobody else.) Just count the speakers of 
the language. If there are enough speakers - regardless of whether they 
are native or not as long as they are fluent - it is useful. This rule 
sorts out "unwanted" languages like fantasy languages or unpopular 
planned languages or (really) dead languages etc. by itself, without 
special rules "discriminating" (that is, special rules explicitly 
created to rule out the unwanted languages) them.
Perhaps the lack of comments on my proposals - in a "dispute culture" 
like here on this list - means, there is not much to disagree with and 
to dispute about my proposal ;-)

Marcus Buck

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