[Foundation-l] Please delete mo. wikipedia

M. Williamson node.ue at gmail.com
Sun Oct 10 20:50:19 UTC 2010

2010/10/10 Zugravu Gheorghe <zugravu.gheorghe at gmail.com>:
> On 06.10.2010 02:22, M. Williamson wrote:
>> Marcus Buck wrote:
>>> Read <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moldovan_schools_in_Transnistria>.
>>> They want to switch to Latin since long but the government does
>>> everything to stop them.
>> Marcus, that is a tiny minority of Moldovans in Transnistria, and that
>> article has many POV problems as well (I gave up long ago trying to
>> fix it or reach any kind of compromise - it seems it's on the
>> watchlist of every Romanian nationalist on WP).
> Romanian schools in transnistria are not a small minority, since there
> are few transnistrian schools teaching in romanian with latin script,
> that makes, in a highly urbanizes area, few thousands pupils - they
> receive support from Moldova's ministry of education, and they study
> according to Moldovans school program. And I can assure you that they
> don't study any "moldovan language" there. The rest of the schools in
> transnistria are russian or ukrainean language schools, where they study
> "moldovan language" as a kind of foreign language. I have no statistic
> of exact how many schools are studying solely in "moldovan language" or
> how many students do actually study in this language.

I see no statistics, and in fact you are wrong; there are many
students in Cyrillic Moldovan schools, according to OSCE reports there
are 33 Moldovan (Romanian)-language schools that use Cyrillic script,
in my experience OSCE seems biased against Transnistrian position, but
even they are willing to admit there are 33 schools. We can't forget
to add bilingual schools, which appear in PMR official statistics.

> The revival of a mo.wikipedia for me is quite questionable - since,
> starting, as an imperialistic and colonial politics implemented by
> Stalin's Soviet Union "nation building" politic it is gaining thus a
> kind of legitimacy by bringing it up.

Languages and politics are often impossible to totally separate. As
long as a language variety is used by actual human beings as a
habitual code, nothing else should matter in scientific
considerations. There are two sides to every issue, Soviet language
policies cannot all be declared as evil and invalid just because you
or anybody else dislikes the regime that implemented them. The current
situation is what must be considered.

> I would like to remind that for short period of time in the 30's the
> "moldovan language" did used the latin script, but after returning back
> to kirilic few years later. Also I would like to bring up that during
> the communist era Moldova/moldovan people/romanian moldovans (underline
> what ever you find suitable for you) have undergone through a total of
> five different linguistic reforms - during the time when the grammar
> rules and vocabulary was radically changing.

Yes, and I would like to remind you that until relatively recently,
all varieties of Romanian/Moldovan were always written in Cyrillic.
Anti-Cyrillic position is to state that Moldovan Cyrillic is an
artificial, Russian-based orthography, but some Soviet linguists
stated that it was a reform of Romanian Cyrillic, which to me does not
seem entirely incredible. In fact, the old Romanian Cyrillic alphabet
was used exclusively until about the 1860s, and still used by some
until the 1920s. Moldovan Cyrillic was first used in 1926, thus an
argument can be made...

> I dont underestimate the importance of having a discussion on "moldovan
> language" from linguistic or anthropological point of view. But any
> administrative actions regarding wikipedia/wikimedia I found it very
> questionable and adequate.

I am glad that you found it adequate. As far as "questionable", it is
useful perhaps to remember that in most contentious situations, it is
impossible for everybody to walk away completely happy. I ask you, how
does the existence of text in Moldovan (Romanian) Cyrillic harm you on
a personal level? I understand the problems posed to some segments of
Moldovan society by having Cyrillic text almost exclusively at
mo.wikipedia.org, but I'm not sure I understand the issue with having
it at a less ambiguous domain such as ro-cyrl.wikipedia.org. Being
offended that someone tries to "usurp" your language name or code is
one thing, being offended that a language/script combination *exists*
is quite another, I think. Nobody compels anybody to look at such
content; if it is not housed at a domain that is claimed as your own
(such as mo.wp may be for self-declared Moldovan speakers who use the
Latin alphabet), I don't see the real problem.


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