Stories about Language from August, 2011
Russia: Content Analysis of Party Manifestos
LJ-user schegloff analyses [ru] party manifestos of the Russian parties using Wordle word clouds. “Opposition can be identified by the word “must,” patriots by the word “Russia,” ruling party by the word “Unity,” concludes the blogger, speaking of the word frequency in each document.
South Korea: Anger Erupted over Video of Afro-American Man Assaulting Elderly Couple
A video of an African American man mocking, cursing and assaulting a defenseless elderly Korean couple was spread online, prompting public anger. Police is investigating the case and it is believed that he took violent action after misunderstanding a Korean sentence which simply meant “You should sit over here” as...
Kazakhstan: Controversy Over State Language Promotion
In early August 2011, the Ministry of Culture of Kazakhstan developed a draft law to introduce some amendments into the state's language policy. It was quickly labeled by many observers as a move to further reduce the scope of use of the Russian language, which enjoys equal status with the Kazakh language, according to the Constitution.
Jamaica: Marcus Garvey's Birthday
Diaspora litblogger Geoffrey Philp posts a poem to honour the anniversary of Marcus Garvey's birthday.
Comedic Fun with Japanese Hashtag Memes
Since Twitter introduced Japanese language capability for hashtags, the Japanese Twitterverse has turned into an oasis for wordplay.
Ukraine: Basic Language Tips
The Kalpak shares some Ukrainian language tips that should “help with basic sign reading that a new visitor to Ukraine will need to do in order to navigate around Kyiv.”
Russia: One Million Twitter Accounts in Russian
The number of Twitter accounts in Russian crossed the point of one million, according to recent reseach [ru] by Russian Internet company Yandex. Now, Russian speakers publish around 370,000 tweets a day (comparing to 150,00o a year ago). The percentage of daily active Twitter users (of the total Russian speakers)...
Portugal: Petition For Galicia to Enter the Lusophone Space
The association MIL – Movimento Internacional Lusófono (International Lusophone Movement) [pt] – has written an open letter [pt] to the Portuguese Minister of Foreign Affairs, Paulo Portas, addressing the “inflection of the Portuguese State's position towards Galicia”. MIL considers the Spanish region of Galicia as an integral part of the...
Egypt: The Unspoken Languages of the Streets
We as humans have a unique ability to communicate via spoken languages. However in a crowded and loud city like Cairo, we sometimes need more than spoken languages to communicate. Tarek Amr takes a closer look at sign languages used in congested areas and the language of car honks.
Russia: Learning Russian Via Social Networks
Tips on learning Russian through social networking sites – at Russian Language Blog.
Ukraine: Language Confusion
Austere Insomniac thinks that Ukraine's former PM Yulia Tymoshenko's insistence of having Russian interpreted to Ukrainian in the court-case against her is silly, as Russian is her mother tongue, and goes on to discuss language issues in Ukraine.
China: Internet memes on Wenzhou Train Crash
George Ding from China Geeks explains the meaning behind two Internet memes derived from the Wenzhou train crash incident: “it is a miracle!” and “Whether or not you believe it; either way, I believe it.”
Latin America: Should News Broadcasters Provide More English Content?
Robert Valencia from My Humble Opinion blogs about a couple failed attempts by Latin American news organizations to provide content in English. He argues: “If Latin American broadcasters wish to keep up with other international networks that have incorporated high-quality English programming, now is the time to deliver real content...
Myanmar Alphabet, Names and Culture
Ba Kaung writes about the Myanmar alphabet and explains the meaning of some of the popular names used in the country
Moldova: Attack on Journalist Causes Online Debate on “Language Issue”
An incident of violence against a Moldovan journalist has brought about active online discussions regarding the long-protracted animosities between the Moldovan majority and the small Russian minority in the country.
Global Voices Podcast 2: Speaking Our Language
In this edition of the Global Voices podcast we talk all about language and the internet. The way we speak, write, gesture, code and communicate is such a rich topic for discussion. It was hard to pick what to go for!
Global Voices in Aymara: Preserving Indigenous Language Online
One of the newest Global Voices Lingua sites is also its first in an indigenous language, Aymara. This native language is spoken by more than 2 million people across the Andes, especially in Bolivia and Peru, where it is among the official languages.
Portugal: Lusophone Communities “Have a Look” at the Center of Porto
The Portuguese cultural and artistic association 10pt has launched the initiative Olha Lá (Have a Look) [pt] aiming at “gathering an itinerant object through the Portuguese language space”. The Lusophone communities in Porto are thus called to share and spread the perceptions of diaspora across the historic center of town...