[Foundation-l] Please delete mo. wikipedia

Gerard Meijssen gerard.meijssen at gmail.com
Wed Oct 13 12:49:13 UTC 2010

The language committee does not involve itself normally. In this thread it
was suggested that it could by exception.

What I have done is apply the normal arguments we use for new languages. The
history of a language is of no relevance. What is relevant is that we have
one series of projects for one language. Given that Romanian is the same as
Moldovan. Given that we do not allow for restrictions in new projects, the
point I make is completely predictable.

As to "links to discussion" ... we are not policy wonks, I prefer to apply
"there are no rules" this is in line with the capable people we have in our
committee and the fact that objections mean that we have to get to an
agreement in the committee.

On 13 October 2010 14:41, Marcus Buck <me at marcusbuck.org> wrote:

>  An'n 13.10.2010 03:29, hett Gerard Meijssen schreven:
> > It has been suggested that a solution should be able to pass muster at
> the
> > language committee. I am seriously in favour of an end to this
> extravaganza.
> > However, I have not seen a proposal that would pass muster of the members
> of
> > the language committee.
> >
> > Let me be specific; a solution needs to allow for a transliteration of
> the
> > Romanian language Wikipedia into Cyrillic. Preferred is a round robin
> > transliteration. Remember, a Wikipedia is granted to a language not a
> > country.
> Really interesting news! After all the years where you and other
> language committee members have exclaimed "We only process proposals for
> _new_ projects. We are not involved in closing projects or resolving
> language conflicts!" when did this change? A link to the discussion
> where this change was decided would be very useful.
> We are yet again at the stage that the question "which language is this
> about?" appears. I feel I have to make some clarifications. "Romanian"
> and "Moldovan" are national varieties of the same language. National
> varieties are not the same as dialects. Dialects are things like
> Geordie, Scouse or Kentish. These are language differences that have
> developed over a period of hundreds or a thousand of years by local oral
> tradition. Dialects can vary widely and there are fluent transitions
> between "dialect" and "language" (e.g. Scots is considered a language of
> its own by many linguists although it is treated like a dialect by many
> English people). National varieties on the other hand have not developed
> locally by oral tradition. They originated in the adoption of a
> standardized language by a country. In the 19th century a standardized
> language evolved among the educated speakers of Eastern European Romance
> languages. This standardized language was adopted as a base for written
> language in all regions where Eastern European Romance languages where
> spoken irrespective of the fact that the standardized language usually
> differed from the local dialects. The standardized language in theory
> was identical everywhere. But some small differences (usually in the
> lexicon) existed, e.g. when dialectal terms were adopted into the
> standardized language or when laws used differing terms to regulate
> things that are otherwise similar.
> That's in no way special to Romanian/Moldovan. The same happened with
> British vs. American English, German vs. Austrian vs. Swiss German,
> French vs. Canadian French, Portuguese vs. Brazilian Portuguese, Spanish
> vs. Mexican vs. Argentinian etc. Spanish, Dutch vs. Flemish Dutch etc.
> The discussion we are having is not about Romanian vs. Moldovan. It's
> about Latin vs. Cyrillic. It's only about the characters you use to
> write it down not about the content of the words.
> What are the options?
> - keep the status quo
> - just change the URL from 'mo' to 'ro-cyrl'
> - delete mo.wp
> - re-open the Cyrillic wiki for editing
> - create an equal rights latn-cyrl conversion on ro.wp
> - create an unequal rights conversion from latn to cyrl at ro-cyrl.wp
> == Status quo ==
> Advantages:
> - nothing needs to be done by anybody
> Disadvantages:
> - everybody keeps dissatified
> - no meaningful content available for users who want to read Cyrillic
> == Change the URL ==
> Advantages:
> - the request that started the thread is satisfied, the wiki can no
> longer be mistaken to propagate the existence of a Moldovan language
> different from Romanian or to propagate that "Moldovan is Cyrillic"
> Disadvantages:
> - no meaningful content available for users who want to read Cyrillic
> == Delete mo.wp ==
> Advantages:
> - the wiki can no longer be mistaken to propagate the existence of a
> Moldovan language different from Romanian or to propagate that "Moldovan
> is Cyrillic"
> - the Latin script users would welcome the abolition of a project that
> many of them perceive to be a remnant sting of Soviet cultural
> imperialism in the flesh of the Romanian language
> Disadvantages:
> - no meaningful content available for users who want to read Cyrillic
> == Re-open the wiki ==
> Advantages:
> - gives the Cyrillic users the chance to build their own resource
> Disadvantages:
> - redundancy with ro.wp, doubling the effort
> - there are almost no users who want to fill the project with content
> - the Latin script users will get upset
> - it will take a looong time until a useful resource comes out of it
> == Equal rights conversion on ro.wp ==
> Advantages:
> - full participation chances for Cyrillic users
> - all content fully available to Cyrillic users
> Disadvantages:
> - risking a revolt among ro.wp users and risking to loose a good part of
> the community, possibly risking a fork
> - much extra work to be done by a community largely unwilling to spend
> work on it
> == Unequal rights conversion off of ro.wp ==
> Advantages:
> - all content available to Cyrillic users
> Disadvantages:
> - no participation chances for Cyrillic users
> - still unpopular among Latin users
>  From a strictly Wikipedia-ideological and politically unideological
> point of view the equal rights conversion would be the right thing to
> do. But given the fact that that could totally blow the whole and very
> active community of ro.wp and given the fact that we would risk this for
> a less than 1% minority, a minority we have no proof of that they would
> take the chance to participate if we gave it to them or that they are
> even interested in the content, I think we would be ideological
> dumbasses if we would accept this risk.
> @FoundationStaff (one of whom is hopefully reading these discussions on
> Foundation-l):
> I hope the Foundation is interested in this discussion too. Bringing
> knowledge to the people of the world and stuff. So, what's the
> Foundation's position on this? The current lack of any action from the
> Foundation's side suggests that it opts for "status quo". So what's the
> Foundation's rationale for not serving the Cyrillic users? (Oh, and
> please don't answer with "limited resources, other important stuff to
> do". That would be a weak response. Any of the above options should be
> technically implementable in a single working day and I think it's worth
> to spend one working day if that means making Wikipedia available to
> 177,000 additional people.)
> Marcus Buck
> User:Slomox
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