Mailing List Archive

LangCom meeting report
As you should know, thanks to Wikimedia Germany, Language committee had
its first real-life meeting from May 13th to May 15th during the
Hackathon in Berlin [1].

The meeting was very successful. We've made numerous conclusions. They
need to be verified by LangCom members who didn't participate, but I
don't expect substantial changes.

LangCom members who participated are: Amir E. Aharoni, Antony D. Green,
Gerard Meijssen, Michael Everson, Miloš Rančić, Oliver Stegen (via
Skype), Robin Pepermans, Santhosh Thottingal.

Below is the short report from the meeting. Many of the items inside of
the list below require longer description or even creation of documents.
You will be informed after the creation of every document.

A number of the conclusions below assumes that Language proposal policy
[2] will be changed. (I'll make the proposal to LangCom, then LangCom
will discuss and decide, then it will be sent to the Board for approval.)

The report is by order of importance for the community. (Or at least as
I see what is the most important.) All of the issues below are general.
We've discussed about some particular issues and you can see them at the
page [1].

== Incubator extension and redirects ==

We will soon have implemented Incubator extension on Incubator. The
extensions is written by Robin Pepermans (a LangCom member and Incubator
admin) and it will make Incubator more useful for those who create new
projects.

In relation to this issue, Incubator projects will get their own virtual
codes. For example, http://xyz.wikisource.org/ will be a redirect to
http://incubator.wikimedia.org/wiki/Ws/Xyz.

If technically possible (I'll send the list of the codes to Mark and he
will discuss with other admins is it possible to implement without
problems), all ISO 639-3 codes will get such redirect to the Incubator
page which would have the text similar to "Wikipedia in this language
doesn't exist. If you speak this language, feel free to start it!"

This will be implemented in a couple of steps. I'll write the proposal
at Meta, inform you here and after fixing issues if any, that will be
implemented step by step.

The final product will be Incubator with all small projects, but with
virtually all infrastructure needed to see that project as normal
Wikimedia project.

The main goal of that is to allow many languages to have their own
projects, although they don't have enough manpower to keep the whole
project in function (many of their technical needs would be covered by
Incubator admins).

I've got a number of the same questions in relation to this issue: If
they have virtually everything, why would they create new articles to
become independent project? I answered with the question: Why you create
new articles on your own projects?

The point is that it is not likely to expect that a language with less
than 100,000 speakers will every have sufficient number of people
interested in Wikipedia projects to become a separate one. At the other
side, of course, we still have many possible projects which could be
separate at some point of time.

== Observers ==

Language committee has introduced observers. Anyone who wants to see
what Language committee members are discussing on their list are able to
be ask LangCom for that. It is not likely that any member of this list
wouldn't get such access.

Sj is our first observer.

== Monthly reports ==

Robin Pepermans said that he will write monthly reports of LangCom's
work to inform Wikimedia community.

== Macrolanguages ==

There are a couple of cases in which macrolanguages need to get their
own project. It could be about very small population which wants to have
common Wikisource, let's say; or it could be about a kind of unified
orthography used by a couple of closely related languages.

In all cases communities have to want that. All cases will be handled on
case by case basis.

In other words: While it changes Language proposal policy, this is not a
general rule, but making a field to cover some specific cases in which
macrolanguage project is the most sensible solution.

== Simple projects ==

While some Simple English projects have no reason to exist (Wikiquote,
for example), LPP will be changed to allow other simple language
projects to exist if necessary requirements exist.

We haven't finished this discussion, but at least the rules are:
* Language should be the world language.
* There is a reliable published specification of "simple" (or
equivalent) language.

Under present rules, counting that both languages have reliable
published specification, French would get simple project, while German
wouldn't because French is used as world language. However, we haven't
finished this discussion yet and I think that we should cover regional
lingua francas (or cultural, technical etc. languages used not just by
native speakers) as well (if so, German and Swahili would qualify).

However, the second rule won't be discussed. Proposers of simple
projects have to present reliable and published specification of
"simple" or equivalent language, as English has.

== Proposals for closing projects ==

Robin has made Proposal for closing projects [3]. We discussed briefly
and in general we agreed about the next:

* Anyone can propose project closure.
* A member of Language committee who wants to deal with it (we'll mark
it inside of the "Task" column of the members table at Language
committee page on Meta [4]) brings that on discussion to Language committee.
* Language committee won't vote about it. Recommendation to the Board
will be sent by the LangCom member which is interested in that issue.
* Board will make final decision; likely the same as recommendation
would be.

Before implementing the full Incubator extension and redirects it is not
likely that we would react in the cases of inactive projects. After
that, it is likely that we would send back all of inactive projects to
Incubator.

== Change of Board decisions ==

Board approval will move from the "approval" point to the "eligibility"
point. That has two important consequences:

* If Board really doesn't want some language on Wikimedia servers
because of political reasons, it could block it at the right time, not
after contributors made significant efforts to create the project.
* All projects with previously approved project[s] will be [almost]
automatically approved. ("Almost" in the sense that, for example, Old
Church Slavonic won't get Wikinews, as well as Belorussian will get just
one Wikisource, after communities of two existing Wikipedias agree to
work together.)

== Asking LangCom for opinion ==

Board will be able to get formal *private* answer from LangCom if
necessary. As LangCom's opinion is likely to have significant influence
on Board, LangCom doesn't want to be publicly responsible for random
decisions.

Community is able to ask members of LangCom for anything relevant on
"Talk:Language committee" page [5], as it always was.

== Membership in LangCom ==

Some kind of yearly confirmations should be introduced; actually, yearly
verification that members are willing to continue to stay for another
year on board. However, we didn't discuss it enough, as we didn't have
time for that. It will continue on list.

The other issue is that we (or at least I) will ask two to four times
per year for new members. However, you should note that we don't need
any new member, but new members which are able to have substantial
contribution to LangCom.

== Renaming wikis ==

There are a number of wikis to be renamed, as they don't have proper
codes. They should be renamed with some exceptions. For example:

* Alemannisch Wikipedia, with the code "als" should be renamed to "gsw"
(or split into single languages, as Alemannic German is a
macrolanguage). If moved, it will keep "als" for a couple of years and
then the code will be virtually transferred to Albanian Wikipedia, as
"als" is ISO 639-3 code for Tosk Albanian, which is the standard
Albanian, also.
* Min Nan Chinese presently has code "zh-min-nan". Its ISO 639-3 code is
"nan". As "zh-min-nan" is not used by any Wikimedia project, Min Nan
Wikimedia projects will be able to keep virtual code "zh-min-nan" forever.

== Languages support issues ==

* Thanks to Santhosh, Gerard and others, we have webfonts in MediaWiki.
That basically means that if someone wants to read some page, usually in
a language which doesn't have proper support on contemporary operating
systems, MediaWiki would be able to give needed font to the browser.
Thanks to Siebrand, this will be implemented on Translatewiki [6] soon
as a step to prepare it for WMF servers deployment.
* Amir should make report on two issues:
** problems in RTL/LTR support; and
** problems with sorting in Hebrew, Arabic and Myanmar.

== Other issues ==

There are a couple of other issues discussed during the meeting about
which I would like not to talk before they happen. All of them are about
improving language related issues on Wikimedia projects.

== Your input ==

Feel free to suggest anything relevant here or at our talk page [5].
While some things need time to be changed, good ideas are always welcome.

Other members of LangCom and others who participated in our discussions
can add here what they think that is relevant and I forgot to say.

[1] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee/May_2011_meeting
[2] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_proposal_policy
[3] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Proposals_for_closing_projects
[4] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee
[5] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Language_committee
[6] http://translatewiki.net/

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Re: LangCom meeting report [ In reply to ]
Thank you for the informative message. If it is possible, may I be made an
observer on the langcom list? Do I need to apply for such a position?

Thanks

2011/5/17 Milos Rancic <millosh@gmail.com>

> As you should know, thanks to Wikimedia Germany, Language committee had
> its first real-life meeting from May 13th to May 15th during the
> Hackathon in Berlin [1].
>
> The meeting was very successful. We've made numerous conclusions. They
> need to be verified by LangCom members who didn't participate, but I
> don't expect substantial changes.
>
> LangCom members who participated are: Amir E. Aharoni, Antony D. Green,
> Gerard Meijssen, Michael Everson, Miloš Rančić, Oliver Stegen (via
> Skype), Robin Pepermans, Santhosh Thottingal.
>
> Below is the short report from the meeting. Many of the items inside of
> the list below require longer description or even creation of documents.
> You will be informed after the creation of every document.
>
> A number of the conclusions below assumes that Language proposal policy
> [2] will be changed. (I'll make the proposal to LangCom, then LangCom
> will discuss and decide, then it will be sent to the Board for approval.)
>
> The report is by order of importance for the community. (Or at least as
> I see what is the most important.) All of the issues below are general.
> We've discussed about some particular issues and you can see them at the
> page [1].
>
> == Incubator extension and redirects ==
>
> We will soon have implemented Incubator extension on Incubator. The
> extensions is written by Robin Pepermans (a LangCom member and Incubator
> admin) and it will make Incubator more useful for those who create new
> projects.
>
> In relation to this issue, Incubator projects will get their own virtual
> codes. For example, http://xyz.wikisource.org/ will be a redirect to
> http://incubator.wikimedia.org/wiki/Ws/Xyz.
>
> If technically possible (I'll send the list of the codes to Mark and he
> will discuss with other admins is it possible to implement without
> problems), all ISO 639-3 codes will get such redirect to the Incubator
> page which would have the text similar to "Wikipedia in this language
> doesn't exist. If you speak this language, feel free to start it!"
>
> This will be implemented in a couple of steps. I'll write the proposal
> at Meta, inform you here and after fixing issues if any, that will be
> implemented step by step.
>
> The final product will be Incubator with all small projects, but with
> virtually all infrastructure needed to see that project as normal
> Wikimedia project.
>
> The main goal of that is to allow many languages to have their own
> projects, although they don't have enough manpower to keep the whole
> project in function (many of their technical needs would be covered by
> Incubator admins).
>
> I've got a number of the same questions in relation to this issue: If
> they have virtually everything, why would they create new articles to
> become independent project? I answered with the question: Why you create
> new articles on your own projects?
>
> The point is that it is not likely to expect that a language with less
> than 100,000 speakers will every have sufficient number of people
> interested in Wikipedia projects to become a separate one. At the other
> side, of course, we still have many possible projects which could be
> separate at some point of time.
>
> == Observers ==
>
> Language committee has introduced observers. Anyone who wants to see
> what Language committee members are discussing on their list are able to
> be ask LangCom for that. It is not likely that any member of this list
> wouldn't get such access.
>
> Sj is our first observer.
>
> == Monthly reports ==
>
> Robin Pepermans said that he will write monthly reports of LangCom's
> work to inform Wikimedia community.
>
> == Macrolanguages ==
>
> There are a couple of cases in which macrolanguages need to get their
> own project. It could be about very small population which wants to have
> common Wikisource, let's say; or it could be about a kind of unified
> orthography used by a couple of closely related languages.
>
> In all cases communities have to want that. All cases will be handled on
> case by case basis.
>
> In other words: While it changes Language proposal policy, this is not a
> general rule, but making a field to cover some specific cases in which
> macrolanguage project is the most sensible solution.
>
> == Simple projects ==
>
> While some Simple English projects have no reason to exist (Wikiquote,
> for example), LPP will be changed to allow other simple language
> projects to exist if necessary requirements exist.
>
> We haven't finished this discussion, but at least the rules are:
> * Language should be the world language.
> * There is a reliable published specification of "simple" (or
> equivalent) language.
>
> Under present rules, counting that both languages have reliable
> published specification, French would get simple project, while German
> wouldn't because French is used as world language. However, we haven't
> finished this discussion yet and I think that we should cover regional
> lingua francas (or cultural, technical etc. languages used not just by
> native speakers) as well (if so, German and Swahili would qualify).
>
> However, the second rule won't be discussed. Proposers of simple
> projects have to present reliable and published specification of
> "simple" or equivalent language, as English has.
>
> == Proposals for closing projects ==
>
> Robin has made Proposal for closing projects [3]. We discussed briefly
> and in general we agreed about the next:
>
> * Anyone can propose project closure.
> * A member of Language committee who wants to deal with it (we'll mark
> it inside of the "Task" column of the members table at Language
> committee page on Meta [4]) brings that on discussion to Language
> committee.
> * Language committee won't vote about it. Recommendation to the Board
> will be sent by the LangCom member which is interested in that issue.
> * Board will make final decision; likely the same as recommendation
> would be.
>
> Before implementing the full Incubator extension and redirects it is not
> likely that we would react in the cases of inactive projects. After
> that, it is likely that we would send back all of inactive projects to
> Incubator.
>
> == Change of Board decisions ==
>
> Board approval will move from the "approval" point to the "eligibility"
> point. That has two important consequences:
>
> * If Board really doesn't want some language on Wikimedia servers
> because of political reasons, it could block it at the right time, not
> after contributors made significant efforts to create the project.
> * All projects with previously approved project[s] will be [almost]
> automatically approved. ("Almost" in the sense that, for example, Old
> Church Slavonic won't get Wikinews, as well as Belorussian will get just
> one Wikisource, after communities of two existing Wikipedias agree to
> work together.)
>
> == Asking LangCom for opinion ==
>
> Board will be able to get formal *private* answer from LangCom if
> necessary. As LangCom's opinion is likely to have significant influence
> on Board, LangCom doesn't want to be publicly responsible for random
> decisions.
>
> Community is able to ask members of LangCom for anything relevant on
> "Talk:Language committee" page [5], as it always was.
>
> == Membership in LangCom ==
>
> Some kind of yearly confirmations should be introduced; actually, yearly
> verification that members are willing to continue to stay for another
> year on board. However, we didn't discuss it enough, as we didn't have
> time for that. It will continue on list.
>
> The other issue is that we (or at least I) will ask two to four times
> per year for new members. However, you should note that we don't need
> any new member, but new members which are able to have substantial
> contribution to LangCom.
>
> == Renaming wikis ==
>
> There are a number of wikis to be renamed, as they don't have proper
> codes. They should be renamed with some exceptions. For example:
>
> * Alemannisch Wikipedia, with the code "als" should be renamed to "gsw"
> (or split into single languages, as Alemannic German is a
> macrolanguage). If moved, it will keep "als" for a couple of years and
> then the code will be virtually transferred to Albanian Wikipedia, as
> "als" is ISO 639-3 code for Tosk Albanian, which is the standard
> Albanian, also.
> * Min Nan Chinese presently has code "zh-min-nan". Its ISO 639-3 code is
> "nan". As "zh-min-nan" is not used by any Wikimedia project, Min Nan
> Wikimedia projects will be able to keep virtual code "zh-min-nan" forever.
>
> == Languages support issues ==
>
> * Thanks to Santhosh, Gerard and others, we have webfonts in MediaWiki.
> That basically means that if someone wants to read some page, usually in
> a language which doesn't have proper support on contemporary operating
> systems, MediaWiki would be able to give needed font to the browser.
> Thanks to Siebrand, this will be implemented on Translatewiki [6] soon
> as a step to prepare it for WMF servers deployment.
> * Amir should make report on two issues:
> ** problems in RTL/LTR support; and
> ** problems with sorting in Hebrew, Arabic and Myanmar.
>
> == Other issues ==
>
> There are a couple of other issues discussed during the meeting about
> which I would like not to talk before they happen. All of them are about
> improving language related issues on Wikimedia projects.
>
> == Your input ==
>
> Feel free to suggest anything relevant here or at our talk page [5].
> While some things need time to be changed, good ideas are always welcome.
>
> Other members of LangCom and others who participated in our discussions
> can add here what they think that is relevant and I forgot to say.
>
> [1] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee/May_2011_meeting
> [2] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_proposal_policy
> [3] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Proposals_for_closing_projects
> [4] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee
> [5] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Language_committee
> [6] http://translatewiki.net/
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> foundation-l@lists.wikimedia.org
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>
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Re: LangCom meeting report [ In reply to ]
Dear Milos,

Thank you for the exhaustive report. May I react to one specific
point? I did not totally understand the rules about "simple"
languages. It reads as if the concept of simple language versions has
only to do with lingua francas, so that the benefittors are people who
are no native speakers. I believe that the concept is in fact larger,
the benefittors are also young people, people who have difficulties to
read, people who are handicapped in any way. So also small or
regionally confined languages such as Hungarian would benefit from
such a Wikipedia.

If I interpret it right, Germans can come to the incubator and build
up a Wikipedia in Simple German? With a reasonable chance to become
later recognized?

Kind regards
Ziko


2011/5/17 Milos Rancic <millosh@gmail.com>:
> As you should know, thanks to Wikimedia Germany, Language committee had
> its first real-life meeting from May 13th to May 15th during the
> Hackathon in Berlin [1].
>
> The meeting was very successful. We've made numerous conclusions. They
> need to be verified by LangCom members who didn't participate, but I
> don't expect substantial changes.
>
> LangCom members who participated are: Amir E. Aharoni, Antony D. Green,
> Gerard Meijssen, Michael Everson, Miloš Rančić, Oliver Stegen (via
> Skype), Robin Pepermans, Santhosh Thottingal.
>
> Below is the short report from the meeting. Many of the items inside of
> the list below require longer description or even creation of documents.
> You will be informed after the creation of every document.
>
> A number of the conclusions below assumes that Language proposal policy
> [2] will be changed. (I'll make the proposal to LangCom, then LangCom
> will discuss and decide, then it will be sent to the Board for approval.)
>
> The report is by order of importance for the community. (Or at least as
> I see what is the most important.) All of the issues below are general.
> We've discussed about some particular issues and you can see them at the
> page [1].
>
> == Incubator extension and redirects ==
>
> We will soon have implemented Incubator extension on Incubator. The
> extensions is written by Robin Pepermans (a LangCom member and Incubator
> admin) and it will make Incubator more useful for those who create new
> projects.
>
> In relation to this issue, Incubator projects will get their own virtual
> codes. For example, http://xyz.wikisource.org/ will be a redirect to
> http://incubator.wikimedia.org/wiki/Ws/Xyz.
>
> If technically possible (I'll send the list of the codes to Mark and he
> will discuss with other admins is it possible to implement without
> problems), all ISO 639-3 codes will get such redirect to the Incubator
> page which would have the text similar to "Wikipedia in this language
> doesn't exist. If you speak this language, feel free to start it!"
>
> This will be implemented in a couple of steps. I'll write the proposal
> at Meta, inform you here and after fixing issues if any, that will be
> implemented step by step.
>
> The final product will be Incubator with all small projects, but with
> virtually all infrastructure needed to see that project as normal
> Wikimedia project.
>
> The main goal of that is to allow many languages to have their own
> projects, although they don't have enough manpower to keep the whole
> project in function (many of their technical needs would be covered by
> Incubator admins).
>
> I've got a number of the same questions in relation to this issue: If
> they have virtually everything, why would they create new articles to
> become independent project? I answered with the question: Why you create
> new articles on your own projects?
>
> The point is that it is not likely to expect that a language with less
> than 100,000 speakers will every have sufficient number of people
> interested in Wikipedia projects to become a separate one. At the other
> side, of course, we still have many possible projects which could be
> separate at some point of time.
>
> == Observers ==
>
> Language committee has introduced observers. Anyone who wants to see
> what Language committee members are discussing on their list are able to
> be ask LangCom for that. It is not likely that any member of this list
> wouldn't get such access.
>
> Sj is our first observer.
>
> == Monthly reports ==
>
> Robin Pepermans said that he will write monthly reports of LangCom's
> work to inform Wikimedia community.
>
> == Macrolanguages ==
>
> There are a couple of cases in which macrolanguages need to get their
> own project. It could be about very small population which wants to have
> common Wikisource, let's say; or it could be about a kind of unified
> orthography used by a couple of closely related languages.
>
> In all cases communities have to want that. All cases will be handled on
> case by case basis.
>
> In other words: While it changes Language proposal policy, this is not a
> general rule, but making a field to cover some specific cases in which
> macrolanguage project is the most sensible solution.
>
> == Simple projects ==
>
> While some Simple English projects have no reason to exist (Wikiquote,
> for example), LPP will be changed to allow other simple language
> projects to exist if necessary requirements exist.
>
> We haven't finished this discussion, but at least the rules are:
> * Language should be the world language.
> * There is a reliable published specification of "simple" (or
> equivalent) language.
>
> Under present rules, counting that both languages have reliable
> published specification, French would get simple project, while German
> wouldn't because French is used as world language. However, we haven't
> finished this discussion yet and I think that we should cover regional
> lingua francas (or cultural, technical etc. languages used not just by
> native speakers) as well (if so, German and Swahili would qualify).
>
> However, the second rule won't be discussed. Proposers of simple
> projects have to present reliable and published specification of
> "simple" or equivalent language, as English has.
>
> == Proposals for closing projects ==
>
> Robin has made Proposal for closing projects [3]. We discussed briefly
> and in general we agreed about the next:
>
> * Anyone can propose project closure.
> * A member of Language committee who wants to deal with it (we'll mark
> it inside of the "Task" column of the members table at Language
> committee page on Meta [4]) brings that on discussion to Language committee.
> * Language committee won't vote about it. Recommendation to the Board
> will be sent by the LangCom member which is interested in that issue.
> * Board will make final decision; likely the same as recommendation
> would be.
>
> Before implementing the full Incubator extension and redirects it is not
> likely that we would react in the cases of inactive projects. After
> that, it is likely that we would send back all of inactive projects to
> Incubator.
>
> == Change of Board decisions ==
>
> Board approval will move from the "approval" point to the "eligibility"
> point. That has two important consequences:
>
> * If Board really doesn't want some language on Wikimedia servers
> because of political reasons, it could block it at the right time, not
> after contributors made significant efforts to create the project.
> * All projects with previously approved project[s] will be [almost]
> automatically approved. ("Almost" in the sense that, for example, Old
> Church Slavonic won't get Wikinews, as well as Belorussian will get just
> one Wikisource, after communities of two existing Wikipedias agree to
> work together.)
>
> == Asking LangCom for opinion ==
>
> Board will be able to get formal *private* answer from LangCom if
> necessary. As LangCom's opinion is likely to have significant influence
> on Board, LangCom doesn't want to be publicly responsible for random
> decisions.
>
> Community is able to ask members of LangCom for anything relevant on
> "Talk:Language committee" page [5], as it always was.
>
> == Membership in LangCom ==
>
> Some kind of yearly confirmations should be introduced; actually, yearly
> verification that members are willing to continue to stay for another
> year on board. However, we didn't discuss it enough, as we didn't have
> time for that. It will continue on list.
>
> The other issue is that we (or at least I) will ask two to four times
> per year for new members. However, you should note that we don't need
> any new member, but new members which are able to have substantial
> contribution to LangCom.
>
> == Renaming wikis ==
>
> There are a number of wikis to be renamed, as they don't have proper
> codes. They should be renamed with some exceptions. For example:
>
> * Alemannisch Wikipedia, with the code "als" should be renamed to "gsw"
> (or split into single languages, as Alemannic German is a
> macrolanguage). If moved, it will keep "als" for a couple of years and
> then the code will be virtually transferred to Albanian Wikipedia, as
> "als" is ISO 639-3 code for Tosk Albanian, which is the standard
> Albanian, also.
> * Min Nan Chinese presently has code "zh-min-nan". Its ISO 639-3 code is
> "nan". As "zh-min-nan" is not used by any Wikimedia project, Min Nan
> Wikimedia projects will be able to keep virtual code "zh-min-nan" forever.
>
> == Languages support issues ==
>
> * Thanks to Santhosh, Gerard and others, we have webfonts in MediaWiki.
> That basically means that if someone wants to read some page, usually in
> a language which doesn't have proper support on contemporary operating
> systems, MediaWiki would be able to give needed font to the browser.
> Thanks to Siebrand, this will be implemented on Translatewiki [6] soon
> as a step to prepare it for WMF servers deployment.
> * Amir should make report on two issues:
> ** problems in RTL/LTR support; and
> ** problems with sorting in Hebrew, Arabic and Myanmar.
>
> == Other issues ==
>
> There are a couple of other issues discussed during the meeting about
> which I would like not to talk before they happen. All of them are about
> improving language related issues on Wikimedia projects.
>
> == Your input ==
>
> Feel free to suggest anything relevant here or at our talk page [5].
> While some things need time to be changed, good ideas are always welcome.
>
> Other members of LangCom and others who participated in our discussions
> can add here what they think that is relevant and I forgot to say.
>
> [1] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee/May_2011_meeting
> [2] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_proposal_policy
> [3] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Proposals_for_closing_projects
> [4] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee
> [5] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Language_committee
> [6] http://translatewiki.net/
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> foundation-l@lists.wikimedia.org
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l
>



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http://zikoblog.wordpress.com/

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Re: LangCom meeting report [ In reply to ]
On 05/17/2011 02:10 PM, M. Williamson wrote:
> Thank you for the informative message. If it is possible, may I be made an
> observer on the langcom list? Do I need to apply for such a position?

I've recommended you to become an observer. We need 7 days for
discussion on LangCom list. As I said, it shouldn't be a big deal to get
observer status for any involved Wikimedian. We initially wanted to
accept any Wikimedian, but I objected to that idea, as it would make our
list equal to a public one.

Note that I forgot to tell you observers will have read-only access to
the list and that names of observers will be listed at LangCom's page on
Meta.

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Re: LangCom meeting report [ In reply to ]
Hello Milos,

thank you very much for the report and thank you all from LangCom for
the work done. It is a very interesting and informative report and very
comprehensive.

Greetings
Ting

On 17.05.2011 13:21, wrote Milos Rancic:
> As you should know, thanks to Wikimedia Germany, Language committee had
> its first real-life meeting from May 13th to May 15th during the
> Hackathon in Berlin [1].
>
> The meeting was very successful. We've made numerous conclusions. They
> need to be verified by LangCom members who didn't participate, but I
> don't expect substantial changes.
>
> LangCom members who participated are: Amir E. Aharoni, Antony D. Green,
> Gerard Meijssen, Michael Everson, Miloš Rančić, Oliver Stegen (via
> Skype), Robin Pepermans, Santhosh Thottingal.
>
> Below is the short report from the meeting. Many of the items inside of
> the list below require longer description or even creation of documents.
> You will be informed after the creation of every document.
>
> A number of the conclusions below assumes that Language proposal policy
> [2] will be changed. (I'll make the proposal to LangCom, then LangCom
> will discuss and decide, then it will be sent to the Board for approval.)
>
> The report is by order of importance for the community. (Or at least as
> I see what is the most important.) All of the issues below are general.
> We've discussed about some particular issues and you can see them at the
> page [1].
>
> == Incubator extension and redirects ==
>
> We will soon have implemented Incubator extension on Incubator. The
> extensions is written by Robin Pepermans (a LangCom member and Incubator
> admin) and it will make Incubator more useful for those who create new
> projects.
>
> In relation to this issue, Incubator projects will get their own virtual
> codes. For example, http://xyz.wikisource.org/ will be a redirect to
> http://incubator.wikimedia.org/wiki/Ws/Xyz.
>
> If technically possible (I'll send the list of the codes to Mark and he
> will discuss with other admins is it possible to implement without
> problems), all ISO 639-3 codes will get such redirect to the Incubator
> page which would have the text similar to "Wikipedia in this language
> doesn't exist. If you speak this language, feel free to start it!"
>
> This will be implemented in a couple of steps. I'll write the proposal
> at Meta, inform you here and after fixing issues if any, that will be
> implemented step by step.
>
> The final product will be Incubator with all small projects, but with
> virtually all infrastructure needed to see that project as normal
> Wikimedia project.
>
> The main goal of that is to allow many languages to have their own
> projects, although they don't have enough manpower to keep the whole
> project in function (many of their technical needs would be covered by
> Incubator admins).
>
> I've got a number of the same questions in relation to this issue: If
> they have virtually everything, why would they create new articles to
> become independent project? I answered with the question: Why you create
> new articles on your own projects?
>
> The point is that it is not likely to expect that a language with less
> than 100,000 speakers will every have sufficient number of people
> interested in Wikipedia projects to become a separate one. At the other
> side, of course, we still have many possible projects which could be
> separate at some point of time.
>
> == Observers ==
>
> Language committee has introduced observers. Anyone who wants to see
> what Language committee members are discussing on their list are able to
> be ask LangCom for that. It is not likely that any member of this list
> wouldn't get such access.
>
> Sj is our first observer.
>
> == Monthly reports ==
>
> Robin Pepermans said that he will write monthly reports of LangCom's
> work to inform Wikimedia community.
>
> == Macrolanguages ==
>
> There are a couple of cases in which macrolanguages need to get their
> own project. It could be about very small population which wants to have
> common Wikisource, let's say; or it could be about a kind of unified
> orthography used by a couple of closely related languages.
>
> In all cases communities have to want that. All cases will be handled on
> case by case basis.
>
> In other words: While it changes Language proposal policy, this is not a
> general rule, but making a field to cover some specific cases in which
> macrolanguage project is the most sensible solution.
>
> == Simple projects ==
>
> While some Simple English projects have no reason to exist (Wikiquote,
> for example), LPP will be changed to allow other simple language
> projects to exist if necessary requirements exist.
>
> We haven't finished this discussion, but at least the rules are:
> * Language should be the world language.
> * There is a reliable published specification of "simple" (or
> equivalent) language.
>
> Under present rules, counting that both languages have reliable
> published specification, French would get simple project, while German
> wouldn't because French is used as world language. However, we haven't
> finished this discussion yet and I think that we should cover regional
> lingua francas (or cultural, technical etc. languages used not just by
> native speakers) as well (if so, German and Swahili would qualify).
>
> However, the second rule won't be discussed. Proposers of simple
> projects have to present reliable and published specification of
> "simple" or equivalent language, as English has.
>
> == Proposals for closing projects ==
>
> Robin has made Proposal for closing projects [3]. We discussed briefly
> and in general we agreed about the next:
>
> * Anyone can propose project closure.
> * A member of Language committee who wants to deal with it (we'll mark
> it inside of the "Task" column of the members table at Language
> committee page on Meta [4]) brings that on discussion to Language committee.
> * Language committee won't vote about it. Recommendation to the Board
> will be sent by the LangCom member which is interested in that issue.
> * Board will make final decision; likely the same as recommendation
> would be.
>
> Before implementing the full Incubator extension and redirects it is not
> likely that we would react in the cases of inactive projects. After
> that, it is likely that we would send back all of inactive projects to
> Incubator.
>
> == Change of Board decisions ==
>
> Board approval will move from the "approval" point to the "eligibility"
> point. That has two important consequences:
>
> * If Board really doesn't want some language on Wikimedia servers
> because of political reasons, it could block it at the right time, not
> after contributors made significant efforts to create the project.
> * All projects with previously approved project[s] will be [almost]
> automatically approved. ("Almost" in the sense that, for example, Old
> Church Slavonic won't get Wikinews, as well as Belorussian will get just
> one Wikisource, after communities of two existing Wikipedias agree to
> work together.)
>
> == Asking LangCom for opinion ==
>
> Board will be able to get formal *private* answer from LangCom if
> necessary. As LangCom's opinion is likely to have significant influence
> on Board, LangCom doesn't want to be publicly responsible for random
> decisions.
>
> Community is able to ask members of LangCom for anything relevant on
> "Talk:Language committee" page [5], as it always was.
>
> == Membership in LangCom ==
>
> Some kind of yearly confirmations should be introduced; actually, yearly
> verification that members are willing to continue to stay for another
> year on board. However, we didn't discuss it enough, as we didn't have
> time for that. It will continue on list.
>
> The other issue is that we (or at least I) will ask two to four times
> per year for new members. However, you should note that we don't need
> any new member, but new members which are able to have substantial
> contribution to LangCom.
>
> == Renaming wikis ==
>
> There are a number of wikis to be renamed, as they don't have proper
> codes. They should be renamed with some exceptions. For example:
>
> * Alemannisch Wikipedia, with the code "als" should be renamed to "gsw"
> (or split into single languages, as Alemannic German is a
> macrolanguage). If moved, it will keep "als" for a couple of years and
> then the code will be virtually transferred to Albanian Wikipedia, as
> "als" is ISO 639-3 code for Tosk Albanian, which is the standard
> Albanian, also.
> * Min Nan Chinese presently has code "zh-min-nan". Its ISO 639-3 code is
> "nan". As "zh-min-nan" is not used by any Wikimedia project, Min Nan
> Wikimedia projects will be able to keep virtual code "zh-min-nan" forever.
>
> == Languages support issues ==
>
> * Thanks to Santhosh, Gerard and others, we have webfonts in MediaWiki.
> That basically means that if someone wants to read some page, usually in
> a language which doesn't have proper support on contemporary operating
> systems, MediaWiki would be able to give needed font to the browser.
> Thanks to Siebrand, this will be implemented on Translatewiki [6] soon
> as a step to prepare it for WMF servers deployment.
> * Amir should make report on two issues:
> ** problems in RTL/LTR support; and
> ** problems with sorting in Hebrew, Arabic and Myanmar.
>
> == Other issues ==
>
> There are a couple of other issues discussed during the meeting about
> which I would like not to talk before they happen. All of them are about
> improving language related issues on Wikimedia projects.
>
> == Your input ==
>
> Feel free to suggest anything relevant here or at our talk page [5].
> While some things need time to be changed, good ideas are always welcome.
>
> Other members of LangCom and others who participated in our discussions
> can add here what they think that is relevant and I forgot to say.
>
> [1] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee/May_2011_meeting
> [2] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_proposal_policy
> [3] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Proposals_for_closing_projects
> [4] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Language_committee
> [5] http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:Language_committee
> [6] http://translatewiki.net/
>
> _______________________________________________
> foundation-l mailing list
> foundation-l@lists.wikimedia.org
> Unsubscribe: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/foundation-l


--
Ting

Ting's Blog: http://wingphilopp.blogspot.com/


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Re: LangCom meeting report [ In reply to ]
On 05/17/2011 02:21 PM, Ziko van Dijk wrote:
> Thank you for the exhaustive report. May I react to one specific
> point? I did not totally understand the rules about "simple"
> languages. It reads as if the concept of simple language versions has
> only to do with lingua francas, so that the benefittors are people who
> are no native speakers. I believe that the concept is in fact larger,
> the benefittors are also young people, people who have difficulties to
> read, people who are handicapped in any way. So also small or
> regionally confined languages such as Hungarian would benefit from
> such a Wikipedia.

Your point is a good one. My position is that the rules of which
language could be accepted for which Wikimedia project will be changing
through the time by being broader.

There are two separate questions related to incorporation of languages:
(1) having appropriate infrastructure and (2) having relevant
foundations for the project.

The first one is not related to the technical infrastructure, at least
in this moment of time. New MediaWiki instance is very cheap and if
nobody uses it -- it costs nothing; if many people are using it -- it is
useful.

The question of infrastructure is much more related to our
organizational power. And, again, it is not so related to keeping small
projects clean of vandalism -- as it is not so complex task -- but to
the need to create successful projects.

So, at the time when there are languages of millions of speakers without
Wikipedia and our organizational resources are still very limited, we
should spend resources to fulfill needs of larger populations. That
includes the fact that the languages with the most of speakers would get
simple projects, no matter of the initial reason.

During the next one or two years Incubator will be strongly impacted by
the present set of changes. It is likely that it will become the second
most important Wikimedia project, after English Wikipedia. After that,
we shall see would be there enough people willing to handle Incubator
and would we be able to handle more classes of projects; most of them
likely inside of the Incubator.

My ultimate position is: if we have enough of resources, I see no reason
to deny to someone to write news in Sumerian.

The other question is having relevant foundations for the project. Our
goal is to spread educational materials and other kinds of free
information. Broadly speaking, even Wikibooks in Klingon and Wikinews in
Sumerian are about that. The first one could be interpreted as spreading
knowledge through the channel which is more interesting to younger
people. The second one is about learning and exploring one classical
language.

But, we need to have some relevant foundations for that. In the case of
Klingon and Sumerian, there are reliable descriptions of their
structures. In the case of simple language, there should be reliable
description of what does that simple language means to avoid OR inside
of the project's foundations. (For example, I haven't heard for such
definition of Serbian (Croatian, Bosnian, Serbo-Croatian), which means
that it is not likely that such definition exists for Hungarian.
However, I may be wrong, of course.)

So, if there is no such definition, it could be created and after that
interested persons should apply for simple project.

> If I interpret it right, Germans can come to the incubator and build
> up a Wikipedia in Simple German? With a reasonable chance to become
> later recognized?

Wait for 10 days to make this issue clear. The logic behind this
approval is related to non-native speakers. And it has its own problems.
My bottom line (which doesn't mean that it is the bottom line of other
members of LangCom) is: if we use some language as fallback one in
MediaWiki localization, then it should have possibility to have simple
Wikipedia.

Among such languages is, for example, Dutch. However, there are
languages with equal or more people who speak them as the second
language. German and Swahili are among them; Persian and Hindustani are,
too. So, logically, they should be included.

In other words, I would say that the project can have its simple version
if there is significant number of L2 speakers.

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Re: LangCom meeting report [ In reply to ]
Hello,

So, we are 10 days (or more) further. :-)

Kind regards
Ziko

>
>> If I interpret it right, Germans can come to the incubator and build
>> up a Wikipedia in Simple German? With a reasonable chance to become
>> later recognized?
>
> Wait for 10 days to make this issue clear. The logic behind this
> approval is related to non-native speakers. And it has its own problems.
> My bottom line (which doesn't mean that it is the bottom line of other
> members of LangCom) is: if we use some language as fallback one in
> MediaWiki localization, then it should have possibility to have simple
> Wikipedia.
>

--
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The Netherlands
http://zikoblog.wordpress.com/

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Re: LangCom meeting report [ In reply to ]
On 06/01/2011 11:44 PM, Ziko van Dijk wrote:
> Hello,
>
> So, we are 10 days (or more) further. :-)
>
> Kind regards
> Ziko
>
>>
>>> If I interpret it right, Germans can come to the incubator and build
>>> up a Wikipedia in Simple German? With a reasonable chance to become
>>> later recognized?
>>
>> Wait for 10 days to make this issue clear. The logic behind this
>> approval is related to non-native speakers. And it has its own problems.
>> My bottom line (which doesn't mean that it is the bottom line of other
>> members of LangCom) is: if we use some language as fallback one in
>> MediaWiki localization, then it should have possibility to have simple
>> Wikipedia.

Huh. This is my fault. I didn't put that on discussion because of many
other issues which have to pass through the rest of LangCom members, but
I will put it on discussion tomorrow with broader interpretation.

BTW, observers of LangCom are now official and Sj and Mark will be added
to the read-only list tomorrow morning CEST (for a couple of days, it
was just a technical issue).

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