Sunday, October 15, 2006

Priorities ...

There are moments when one has to choose among several priorities. Now this is one of these moments ... I had to decide if to let others decide on how I spend my time or if it is me to decide it ... well, who knows me also knows that it is definitely me to decide on my own time.

Some weeks ago the usual trolls came along the nap.wikipedia - yes, I call them trolls, because they do not do facts, but only complain. They complain that people in Abruzzo (and please be aware that I do not say the whole of Abruzzo) speak Neapolitan (or better a variety of it). They claim that Abruzzese is a dialect of Italian quoting Ethnologue ... well some will say: it could be ... but no, it cannot be, because if Abruzzese was a dialect of Italian it would have developed after Italian had developed. This means it would have developed after the unification of Italy around the end of the XIX century. Well yes, Ethonologue says this, but Ethnologue did not make a study on Neapolitan like Rohlfs did. It is commonly accepted that Neapolitan is not only the language spoken in Naples, but, according to linguistic research, and also ISO, Neapolitan (code: nap) is spoken in many variations in quite a huge area. The fact that parts of Abruzzo are part of that macro language is not negotiable even if I can understand that people, not being linguists, but caring just about regional issues, have a problem with that.

The two or three people were offered our co-operation to get their own language code if they provided the necessary prerquisites. Instead they go ahead discussing, changing even wikipedia entries (this can be seen comparing the IPs and the edit time on the various wikis) like they want to have them. This fact is problematical in itself since without stating a paper they are doing original research or even worse vandalism. They do not provide other proof than Ethnologue, but that one cannot be correct, because I believe (well, know) that the Abruzzese language developed well before the unity of Italy and therefore it cannot be a dialect of Italian.

Now the last weeks went by discussing useless discussions - arriving at a point that people insult single contributors of nap.wikipedia directly. And no, we cannot answer them: they are anonymous. What I think about people who are not man enough to sign with their own name should be clear enough. What are they worrying about? If they are so sure about what they are saying and they can proof it by providing the prerequisites to be called an own language and not only a variety of the nap macro language, why don't they show up and tell us who they are? What would happen to them? I for myself always sign what I write with my name and you will always know what I think even if sometimes it might be not so nice.

Well at this stage time for decision has come: the language commission is dealing with the matter and it will take some time to come to a conclusion - no, I am not going to express myself there. They will get a copy of this post. This means that as long as it takes to have a decision on allowing Wikipedia to include original research or on offering these people the possibility from the side of the subcom to bring the prerequisites for an own language code, like already offered more than just once, and co-operating I will concentrate on projects that definitely need my attention. I am not going to have myself rule by some unknown people telling me what to do and what not.

I am sure they will have their chance to really poof they have their own language - but again: it does not depend on nap.wikipedia nor on the language subcom to proof that - it depends on them and on how serious they really are about what they want - it means they will have to work for their language and do good for it and I really hope, that, should they be right, they will do it ... otherwise another language would die out sooner or later (if it is considered to be a language of its own).

What does this mean? I am going to work on the OLPC Children's Dictionary on WiktionaryZ and on some other projects.

Also words & more needs some more attention - it will soon be part of a Stichting (a Dutch foundation). Well yes, it will not be a separate Italian foundation (ONLUS) - it is going to be integrated in an organisation that among other activities will care about translations.

Well, you who are reading this, if you want to co-operate on the OLPC Children's Dictionary project helping us to edit and improve 10 entries by adding translations of definitions + translations of words or by proofreading them and only adding them if they are missing, please write a short mail to kids@wiktionaryz.org stating into which language you would like to translate.

Thank you so much for your help and patience - and see you soon :-)
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