Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-26, 16:32

Lol yeah. I agree. It would be good to have comparable numbers of subforums across the board; that would do a better job of representing the linguistic diversity of most parts of the world than the current organization.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-03-26, 16:36

In all seriousness, I get why it started out as primarily European language subgroups, but at this point this is an international forum.

I think our NAIL split discussion is going in the right direction at the least. Hopefully it'll help pave the way.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-26, 21:59

Here's an updated proposal then:

I envision the following: one forum for European languages, one for NAILs, one for CSAILs (or we can even split it), one for Asian languages, one for AILs (African languages), one for Austronesian languages, one for Australian languages, and one for Papuan languages. The forums for NAILs, CSAILs, and AILs already exist.

In addition, for NAILs, it sounds like what we've come up with so far is: Algic, Iroquoian, Na-Dene, Siouan, Salishan, Eskimo-Aleut, and Uto-Aztecan (7 new forums, 8 in all). I personally would also like to suggest Yuman-Cochimi because this is another language family that is attested on both sides of the border with Mexico. I would also suggest expanding Na-Dene to Dene-Yeniseian; the connection between Yeniseian and Na-Dene seems to be as well established as it possibly could be, and this would also have the advantage of avoiding yet another Eurasian forum.

I also propose the following 41 subforums for Europe, Asia, and part of Africa (not necessarily with these names):
► Show Spoiler

That's 25 forums for languages spoken only in Europe, 9 for languages spoken only in Asia, and 7 for languages that are spoken in a transcontinental area and/or are spoken on more than one continent. The difficulty with reducing the number of forums for European languages is that most major Western European languages are highly popular foreign language choices and among the world's most widely-spoken languages, and merging forums for Eastern European languages may be controversial for political/sociocultural/historical reasons.

For Africa, I propose:

African
Bantu
Berber
Central Sudanic
Chadic
Cushitic
Khoe
Nilotic
Potou-Tano
Senegambian
Volta-Niger

That's 10 new forums.

And now for Central and South America. Hoo boy!

Okay, how about this for the CSAILs?

Arawakan
Aymaran
Cariban
Chibchan
CSAILs
Mayan
Misumalpan
Otomanguean
Panoan
Quechuan
Tupian

That's also 10 new forums.

I also propose a Sign Languages forum.

This is just a preliminary proposal and an attempt to represent the language families of each continent more or less equally.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-03-26, 23:49

A few questions and suggestions, if I may....

vijayjohn wrote:I envision the following: one forum for European languages, one for NAILs, one for CSAILs (or we can even split it), one for Asian languages, one for AILs (African languages), one for Austronesian languages, one for Australian languages, and one for Papuan languages. The forums for NAILs, CSAILs, and AILs already exist.

For what purpose? In particular with the European and Asian suggestions.
I personally would also like to suggest Yuman-Cochimi because this is another language family that is attested on both sides of the border with Mexico.

Is anyone interested in these languages?

I would also suggest expanding Na-Dene to Dene-Yeniseian; the connection between Yeniseian and Na-Dene seems to be as well established as it possibly could be, and this would also have the advantage of avoiding yet another Eurasian forum.

Where as I don't have a huge issue with this, who's interested in the Yeniseian languages to bother with this? Most of them are extinct to begin with. Only Ket is still spoken.

Caucasian (i.e. Armenian, Northeast Caucasian, Northwest Caucasian, and Ossetic)

If Karvelian is having it's own subforum, why are these all lumped together? (And yes, I know the idea is to broaden the Georgian forum.) At the very least I don't like Armenian and Ossetic in the mix like that.

I would also personally like to see either the Turkic Languages subforum expanded to include Mongolic, or a separete Mongolic forum.

Everything else I'm fine with.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-27, 1:38

księżycowy wrote:A few questions and suggestions, if I may....

Of course! :)
For what purpose? In particular with the European and Asian suggestions.

So we have a default forum for each continent instead of having to create so many forums that everything would be impossible for users to find, and also to help balance the number of subforums per continent so that we're not overrepresenting European (and Asian, but especially European) languages even more than we need to.
I personally would also like to suggest Yuman-Cochimi because this is another language family that is attested on both sides of the border with Mexico.

Is anyone interested in these languages?

I don't know, but where would they go otherwise? Some of them are spoken only in California, some are spoken only across the border in Mexico, and some are spoken on both sides.
Where as I don't have a huge issue with this, who's interested in the Yeniseian languages to bother with this? Most of them are extinct to begin with. Only Ket is still spoken.

I mean, I'm kind of interested. But I'm alternatively fine with putting Ket in an Asian subforum instead.
If Karvelian is having it's own subforum, why are these all lumped together? (And yes, I know the idea is to broaden the Georgian forum.) At the very least I don't like Armenian and Ossetic in the mix like that.

The idea I had in mind was to have a space for them without creating even more forums for Eurasian languages than we already have. This isn't the only possible arrangement, though. Even if we had a Kartvelian forum, a Northeast Caucasian forum, a Northwest Caucasian forum, an Armenian forum, and an Ossetian forum all as separate forums, then we would have eleven forums for transcontinental languages, which might not be so bad (given that we also have twenty-five forums specifically for European languages even under this proposal). Alternatively, we could merge them in a different way, e.g. Kartvelian with Northeast Caucasian and Northwest Caucasian in together one forum and Armenian and Ossetian together in another, or even just all of them together in a Caucasian forum as proposed earlier.
I would also personally like to see either the Turkic Languages subforum expanded to include Mongolic, or a separete Mongolic forum.

Hmm, okay. What about Tungusic? And what would a forum with both Turkic and Mongolic (or all three of Turkic, Mongolic, and Tungusic) be called? :hmm:
Last edited by vijayjohn on 2018-03-27, 1:54, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby Linguaphile » 2018-03-27, 1:51

vijayjohn wrote:
I personally would also like to suggest Yuman-Cochimi because this is another language family that is attested on both sides of the border with Mexico.

Is anyone interested in these languages?

I don't know, but where would they go otherwise? Some of them are spoken only in California, some are spoken only across the border in Mexico, and some are spoken on both sides.

I'd probably be interested. It's one of language areas I've studied a bit in the past (Kiliwa mostly) and would like to return to someday. I have a textbook and a dictionary. Not that one person makes a forum, and I probably wouldn't be very active unless others were, but I'm certainly in favor of having a place for it.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-27, 1:56

I might be interested, too. I mean, honestly, it's possible to get me interested in pretty much anything. :P (Yes, even Uralic, even though I haven't done anything in it :silly:).

And that's cool that you're interested in those languages/that area! :D

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-03-29, 0:40

Sorry to take so long to get back to you so late Vijay.
Anywho.....

vijayjohn wrote:So we have a default forum for each continent instead of having to create so many forums that everything would be impossible for users to find, and also to help balance the number of subforums per continent so that we're not overrepresenting European (and Asian, but especially European) languages even more than we need to.

I just don't want those subforums to end up being like the other geographic forums are. It's a bit messy that way, having a bunch of languages from all over the place in them.

Strictly speaking, I'm not against this idea. I'm just saying we should be careful about many threads we end up sticking in these kind of forums.


I mean, I'm kind of interested. But I'm alternatively fine with putting Ket in an Asian subforum instead.

I guess we can leave with up to further discussion?

Like I said, I don't really care that much. :P

The idea I had in mind was to have a space for them without creating even more forums for Eurasian languages than we already have. This isn't the only possible arrangement, though. Even if we had a Kartvelian forum, a Northeast Caucasian forum, a Northwest Caucasian forum, an Armenian forum, and an Ossetian forum all as separate forums, then we would have eleven forums for transcontinental languages, which might not be so bad (given that we also have twenty-five forums specifically for European languages even under this proposal). Alternatively, we could merge them in a different way, e.g. Kartvelian with Northeast Caucasian and Northwest Caucasian in together one forum and Armenian and Ossetian together in another, or even just all of them together in a Caucasian forum as proposed earlier.

I could go for either Kartvelian and North (east and west) Caucasian together or separate somehow, I just don't think it's a good idea to put Armenian or Ossetic with them on linguistic grounds. And I thought we were trying to move away from geographic groupings as much as possible. [And either way we slice the Northern and Southern Caucasian families, I imagine Northwest and Northeast being together.]

Hmm, okay. What about Tungusic? And what would a forum with both Turkic and Mongolic (or all three of Turkic, Mongolic, and Tungusic) be called? :hmm:

Actually, maybe we can leave the Turkic forum along and just make a Mongolic and Tungusic subforum? Is there enough interest between the two of them? I know I'm quite interested in Mongolian, and (to a lesser degree) Manchu.

As for a name: Mongolic and Tungusic Languages. Why make things complicated?

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-29, 1:19

księżycowy wrote:Sorry to take so long to get back to you so late Vijay.

No worries! You kind of did get back to me anyway. :)
I just don't want those subforums to end up being like the other geographic forums are. It's a bit messy that way, having a bunch of languages from all over the place in them.

I think this would be easier to handle if we just had sub-subforums instead. Or I'm open to proposed alternatives if you can think of any.
I guess we can leave with up to further discussion?

Like I said, I don't really care that much. :P

Okay! :)
And I thought we were trying to move away from geographic groupings as much as possible.

Sure, but, well, there are 141 language families according to Ethnologue...but somehow I doubt we'd want to make 141 forums for them.
Actually, maybe we can leave the Turkic forum along and just make a Mongolic and Tungusic subforum? Is there enough interest between the two of them? I know I'm quite interested in Mongolian, and (to a lesser degree) Manchu.

As for a name: Mongolic and Tungusic Languages. Why make things complicated?

I'd be fine with this. I know a tiny bit of Mongolian, and learning a Tungusic language someday would be cool!

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-03-29, 1:33

vijayjohn wrote:I think this would be easier to handle if we just had sub-subforums instead.

And I still like this idea!

Or I'm open to proposed alternatives if you can think of any.

I can't at this moment, but I'll think on it.

Sure, but, well, there are 141 language families according to Ethnologue...but somehow I doubt we'd want to make 141 forums for them.

I rather doubt we have topics on all of these 141 language families (or even languages in them). But either way, no certainly not.

Clearly broad groups will, inevitably, need to be created. Either that are we'll need to double and triple some language families up, or something.

I mean, our goal isn't to represent every language in the world. That's impractical. I thought our idea was to represent every language people have (had) interest in and that are in the Trash Bin. But even that is a hard task to accomplish.

I'd be fine with this. I know a tiny bit of Mongolian, and learning a Tungusic language someday would be cool!

Well, that's settled then! :)

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-29, 3:03

księżycowy wrote:I mean, our goal isn't to represent every language in the world. That's impractical.

But surely it should be able to make space for them. We don't know what languages users of this forum will be interested in in the future as opposed to now or in the past. That's one of the advantages of the Other Languages forum.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-03-29, 9:17

I've always been of the stance that we deal with what we know (i.e. the languages we know that is/has been interest in), rather than try to deal with everything.

There is no reason we can't change things up if some one ends up interested in something that's not represented. Again, from where I'm sitting, our purpose is to deal with what we already have: the Trash Bin.

But yes, I suppose depending on how we work this, we could potentially end up representing every language family. I just don't think that nessicary.

If we did end up making general forums, that would counter the need of both representing every language, and the need for an "Other Languages" section.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-29, 13:17

Which is why I proposed them, right? :)
księżycowy wrote:There is no reason we can't change things up if some one ends up interested in something that's not represented.

I disagree; I would not rely on the admins of this forum to make such changes and doubt in any case that they're all willing to tolerate such an arrangement since it makes a lot more work for them and requires them to make a long-term commitment, something I don't see them being very good at. The pace of change in general on this forum is highly variable FWICT; sometimes things are changed immediately, sometimes they aren't changed in years.

Besides, why continually limit the range of languages we cover? Isn't it a good thing to be all-inclusive? Isn't it also messy to have to keep changing which languages we do or don't cover? It makes it easier both for the admins and for users who want to learn a language that other people haven't explicitly expressed interest in. Under the current arrangement, if I suddenly wanted to study, say, Aari, I could just create a thread for it in the AIL forum. Under the arrangement you seem to be proposing, I'd have to wait for the admins to create an appropriate forum first before I can post anything about it.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-03-29, 13:32

I apologise for not being clear enough, it seems.

I was talking about the amount of specific forums we create. My proposal is, given it seems that we are aiming for generalized forums, we have them for all areas/regions that make sense. This was more about the necessity of splitting off some of the language families that have been suggested.

I'm along the same lines of thought that it would be good to have a place for someone among the forum proper to post a thread about Stieng, for example. If such a language, or linguistic family get enough interest, then we could discuss the possibility of making a "new" forum. That's what I was trying to say.

Again, we'd have to decide on what we would think "enough interest" is again, so as to be fair across the board.

Basically, my only two concerns to what you've said so far are, 1) Making sure the general forums don't get too messy and 2) We don't go too crazy in creating new subforums. We have to balance things out I guess is all I'm saying.

I certainly what it to feel like people who are interested in languages not represented with specific forums can feel like they can talk about them somewhere. Certainly somewhere not hidden away anyway.

Idk if that was any clearer, but I tried. :P

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-03-29, 13:36

Oh OK, yeah, that makes sense. Thanks! :)

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-04-10, 19:37

So, since noöne has come out and said that they totally object, can I assume this is what we're going with?

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby Aurinĭa » 2018-04-10, 20:15

Or perhaps some people object, but don't feel comfortable sharing their opinion. Look what happened last time I did, for instance. "Horrifying" and "disturbed" were among the words used in response to what I said.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-04-10, 21:09

I for one don't want anyone to feel like they can't express their honest thoughts.

I'm more than willing to hear your objections. Here or elsewhere.

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-04-10, 23:42

księżycowy wrote:So, since noöne has come out and said that they totally object, can I assume this is what we're going with?

I'm a bit confused; why do you ask? Is it because you want to start reorganizing the NAIL forum or something (can you even do that)? Or are you just trying to figure out what people's opinions are?

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Re: Language Subforums Management Discussion 2018

Postby księżycowy » 2018-04-10, 23:45

It was a way of making sure the conversation isn't dead.


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