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Improving Mindat.orgOther languages

8th Aug 2019 08:21 BSTRui Nunes Expert

Hi, specific country forums/othet languages will not be available anymore? Thank you

8th Aug 2019 18:13 BSTKuba Kornaga

How will the forum be available in other languages?

8th Aug 2019 18:18 BSTJolyon Ralph Founder

Following a discussion within the management group it was decided that discussions should be within the correct area of the site (eg photos, identity help) but it is acceptable for anyone to start a new thread in whichever language they wish.

8th Aug 2019 18:54 BSTRui Nunes Expert

That's ok "The times they are a-changing". And what about the photo approval forum? Something similar is planned?

9th Aug 2019 10:16 BSTLuca Baralis Expert

I think that different languages in a group, or worst in a discussion, will be a mess.
Why don't ask for at least an abstract in english?

12th Aug 2019 00:38 BSTJohn Christian

On another quality scientific website, The Fossil Forum, the important content such as questions and answers needs to be in English. Online translating services could be used to translate content into English for non English speaking members. Require poster to at least provide a translation using a service such as Google Translate. Content in a foreign language alongside English is OK. 

It is difficult for most members to follow posts in foreign languages.

12th Aug 2019 01:59 BSTFrank K. Mazdab Manager

While I think the vast majority of users here either can speak some/much English or at least have some familiarity with it (since other countries are much better with second or third language instruction than us from Anglophile countries), I personally think it's fine for users to post messages in whatever language they want.  It clearly exemplifies the global aspect of a hobby that obviously crosses many national and linguistic boundaries.  It's just as easy for the reader to use Google Translate as it is for the poster, but for the poster, the native language original likely maintains more of the intended subtlety/complexity of the post.

But one point, though.  If you have an ID question, or a question about how the site works, or you want to report a bug, your probability of a successful resolution is probably greatly improved if you write in a language that a larger proportion of readers here will understand.  If you're questioning the locality of a Sri Lankan sinhalite but you write your query in Sinhalese, you might have to wait a very long time before someone addresses it.  But on the other hand, if one's English is poor (as was my attempt at French on another thread), and especially if one's query is complex or requires subtle distinctions, it might be advantageous for the poster to write in his or her native language (especially where we're particularly well represented... French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Spanish, Norwegian, Finnish), and hope one of our resident linguists can assist.

12th Aug 2019 07:57 BSTRui Nunes Expert

I completely agree with you, Frank.

30th Aug 2019 15:52 BSTLuca Baralis Expert

However I think that rules are needed, or at least a Mindat netiquette.
To say, if i post something in italian, and you post a reply in english, then someone else in french, ... it will be a real mess!

30th Aug 2019 20:06 BSTAlfredo Petrov Manager

I think it is arrogant to force anyone to use a language with which they are unfamiliar. So let anyone post in any language they feel comfortable writing. The vast majority of our users post in english anyway. For those relatively small number of posts in other languages, those who don‘t know the language can either use an online translator like Google (which works quite well for european languages but is awful for chinese and japanese), or they can ignore the post (just as we probably do for most of the posts in our own language too). But I really don‘t see any problem here grave enough to require new regulations.

30th Aug 2019 20:24 BSTFrank K. Mazdab Manager

Well, without necessarily encouraging everyone here display their native language nationalism out and proud on mindat, in part for some of the reasons I noted above, I think particularly if a visitor doesn't speak English, or even if they  can but don't feel they can express the subtlety of their question or the finer points of their post without the benefit of their native language, then for the rest of us initially seeing a cacophony of languages here (before hitting the Google Translate web-app button) wouldn't necessarily be a mess.

Of course, I don't know how well Google Translate or similar online translation program would handle multiple languages on one page... I've never tried that experiment.  If it gets confused, or requires sequential translations for each additional language, then that might indeed be a mess.  Perhaps that might be a fun test to try... have 4 or 5 people write a paragraph or two in different languages, and testing which, if any, of the online translation programs can accommodate that "mess"... :-)

30th Aug 2019 20:45 BSTJolyon Ralph Founder

I'm not ruling out bringing back the foreign language sections at some point if there's a wish to do so.

30th Aug 2019 21:44 BSTRui Nunes Expert

In November 2005 I sent this message to Jolyon :)
Dear Jolyon,Congratulations for your iniciative in giving opportunity for people comunicate in their own language.Although would observe that from all specific forums just the English one is one of the most spoken in the world...German – 10th positionFrench – 14thItalian – 21st. . .Portugal is in the 7th place in the ranking of the most spoken languages: Portugal, Brazil, Mozambique, Angola, Guiné, São Tomé e Principe, Cap Vert, East Timor, … and also in large Portuguese communities all over the world !When may we expect your kindness in building a forum for us Portuguese people ?Greetings from PortugalRui NunesAh ! If any help needed in managing portuguese words please give me a ring.

30th Aug 2019 22:18 BSTJolyon Ralph Founder

If/when they return we will add portuguese! 
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