[Foundation-l] Simple Wikipedia: different projects

Milos Rancic millosh at gmail.com
Wed Jun 22 20:46:27 UTC 2011

On Wed, Jun 22, 2011 at 22:24, Lodewijk <lodewijk at effeietsanders.org> wrote:
> 2011/6/22 Milos Rancic <millosh at gmail.com>
> There are at least three serious issues in creation of such projects, if
>> they are not defined strictly linguistically:
>> * Scope. Which age do we cover, approximately? Any valid theory would be
>> useful, but it should be defined. According to Piaget, less than 15 [in
>> Northern France]; according to the age when we could be sure that child
>> knows to read, more than 7 or 8. Which knowledge is appropriate for that
>> range of age? What's appropriate for one 8-years old and what's
>> appropriate for one 14-years old?
>> <https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l>
> <snip some very interesting remarks based on this age assumption>
> I think you assume too quickly that only young people would benifit from
> "simple" texts. In the Netherlands we have 1.5 million "low literate adults"
> (people having trouble to read & write) and I think the Netherlands actually
> is having quite low percentages in that field compared to many other
> countries. These are not even people who speak Dutch as a secondary
> language. Besides that there are indeed many children who might also benifit
> from this content, and also non-natives (consider for example people from
> Wallonia or Surinam (if non-native Dutch) who would like to look up
> something in Dutch for some reason.

You are then talking about Wikipedia as Simple English Wikipedia is.
My position, but not shared with other LangCom members, is that we
should allow any Wikipedia in simple language if there is a reliable
and published specification of that language (and other regular
criteria are met).

I have a friendly advice for you (and I hope that Michael and Gerard
wouldn't kill me because of that): If you are able to create really
valid community and your language is not considered as a world one (as
the case with Dutch is), and you really want to create Wikipedia in
simple language: (1) Create it inside of the main Wikipedia's
namespace. (2) Ask developers to install Incubator Extension when it
becomes a bit more mature. (3) Ask IETF for the language subtag
(something like "nl-simpel" or "nl-eenvoudige" or whatever you think
it is appropriate). (4) Ask Language committee for redirect.

I suppose that we would need a year or two to full implementation of
the Incubator Extension and redirects. I also think that no one from
LangCom would object such arrangement. Having the whole nl.wp
community behind such project is one thing, having a separate
community is another. If supported by nl.wp community, I wouldn't have
anything against not having scientific basis.

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