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pasternak 11-17-2009 11:16 AM

language use in forum threads
Dear all,

I think it is not fair to the non-francophone members of the site to use French in the forum threads. Recently, there have been several interesting threads in which people who do not read French could not participate. For example "Coming out" or "Baisse d'activité sur TE". When I receive a critique in french, I find it no problem at all, because critiques are mostly short and my embryonic French is enough for them. But reading long texts in French (let alone writing a response in French) requires too much of my time and effort, pardonez-moi... I tried to translate the French texts using an online translator but the results are awful.

I think everybody can make a small effort and write in English, it does not have to be perfect at all. I am not a native English speaker myself, but I would use English even if half of the TE members were Russian speakers. This is just a sign of respect to others, don't you think? And on top of that, there is no use in talking about members leaving the site if many of them are feeling "linguistically challenged" and as a result, alienated.

Romatou 11-17-2009 12:05 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
Cher ami : voici un extrait des conditions d'utilisations officielles du site , en Anglais , pour ne pas trop te fatiguer , ceci est la rédaction des concepteurs du site.

Prends en bonne note , learning about the world could also mean , taking some interest in other's way of speaking.

Multilingual Capability

* View page in any language (currently Chinese ~Traditional & Simplified~, Dutch, English French, Japanese, Lithuanian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish)
* Write information about photos and oneself, critiques, and forum discussions in any language

Mais je te félicite de tomber à bras raccourcis sur les sujets d'expression française ,
cela ménagera les autres idiomes qui nous cotoient dans la barbarie , dont nous pouvons cependant subir quelquefois les assauts insupportables : j'ai vu de l'italien , du polonais et même du turc ici ..... ilots insupportables de résistance , probablement le fait de quelques individus isolés , pas encore convaincus des vertus du
lissage universel ....

KLB 11-17-2009 12:35 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
Hello Alexander

Since one of the mentioned topics concern me, I'll explain to you.
Personally, I use English for non-francophone members when I write a critique, when I send a mail, or when I participate in a discussion begun in English; like you do.
My English is not perfect, but enough to express short thoughts without too many mistakes, I think.
For this thread "coming out" that you mentioned, it was a reply to another subject, for which the majority (almost all) of participants were French or Francophones.
What I had to say was important for me and it was easier for me to express myself properly in my mother tongue, to make me understand. You must be comfortable to argue and defend a position ;o)

I could use your own words :
"But [writing] long texts in [english] requires too much of my time and effort... I tried to translate [into english] using an online translator but the results are awful."

In any case, it's a lack of respect of the other participants.

pasternak 11-17-2009 12:46 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
Dear Karine,

I respect you and all the other francophone members. Moreover, I respect your right to express yourself in any language you like. And I do not question the TOS that allow you to do so.

It's just that I often want to read the threads in French, because I think they are very interesting, and I can't...

And yes, to me it may be a question of lack of time. But to lots of other members, who do not know French at all, it is worse...

On the other note, if you write in French, you narrow your audience to the francophone members only. If you write in English, your audience is much wider...

Or do I miss something?


John_F_Kennedy 11-17-2009 03:32 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
read my thread about the same issue some month/years ago and have fun
<a href="">Non-english threads</a>

Viele Grüße,

Keitht 11-17-2009 03:36 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
For members who are not native English speakers, and who are not fluent in English either, it makes much more sense to me that they post comments in their native tongue. There is always the facility for translation, but that should be done by the person reading the comment, not the writer - in my opinion.
I believe it is easier to get the true sense of what somebody means by translating from a language they are comfortable with than by them trying to express themselves in a language they are not comfortable with.

BennyV 11-18-2009 11:07 AM

Re: language use in forum threads
Groot gelijk, maar je kan niks verplichten. Als ik in het Nederlands schrijf, richt ik mij nu eenmaal tot een kleiner publiek.

English is the language with the widest global reach. Obviously this is an enormous advantage to the natives, as every one else will have to use a second or foreign language to communicate. But that's the way it is.

On the other hand, everyone is free to use the language of his/her choice. But you should know that if you write in e.g. Latvian in an international forum, this will seriously limit your possible audience.

Voilà, da's mijn gedacht.


nszeretlek 11-18-2009 12:23 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
I agree with Alexander since despite i feel by far much more comfortable when i write in Spanish i´m aware many of us don´t understand it and i would like you to interact with me and everyone else here . That´s why , in my opinion , English is really important as a more or less common international language . Let´s imagine if people from Hungary would write only in Hungarian , Greeks in Greek , from Tanzania in Suahili...Chinese ... and so on .. It is a fact for many of us is not too difficult to write some thoughts or points of view in English...

I´ve been writting ,so far ,my notes and comments in that very language(English) when being able to do so more easily in Spanish, just for the exposed reason that i´m for to set up an attempt of fluent communication and arrive to most of you who don´t know Spanish ...

And to conclude , i´m not so lucky to speak French ...:(

Keitht 11-18-2009 03:33 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
I don't disagree with the observation that by writing in English you reach the widest audience. If people are confident with written English then that is certainly a bonus. I still say that if a person isn't confident in written English they are better posting notes, critiques in their native language than in a form of English which is difficult to interpret.

Didi 11-18-2009 05:06 PM

Re: language use in forum threads
There is on Serbian Treker who writes me in his language.
It's not disturbing me I translate Serbian with Google.
Everybody is free to use the best way to write a critic.
I wrote my notes in French and English and I feel more difficult to write in English

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