It seems that some people are angry that a Kurdish-language version of Firefox exists. The mozilla.feedback newsgroup has been full of posts about Kurdish, many of them similar to this message.
Who knew that making it possible for volunteers to translate a web browser into multiple languages could be controversial?
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on Wednesday, March 7th, 2007 at 4:35 pm and is filed under Linguistics, Mozilla, Politics.
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It’s disheartening to see the anti-Kurdish comments where the commenters praise the “freedom” of Firefox but would deny that same “freedom” to a different segment of the population due to politic/history/perception/etc.. It’s also clear, which you identified in IRC, that the comments are merely copied and pasted from a blog that is pushing this agenda. Finally, it’s also clear that these users do not understand the nature of open source software.
Serbian, Croatian, and Bosnian have (estimated) 12, 6.2, and 2.7 million speakers, respectively. That sounds like they’re at best in the range of Kurdish when combined, and individually even notably less. Does that mean that Serbian Wikipedia should be wiped along with Firefox’s Kurdish translation?
Nik: Sadly, there are people who _would_ like to see Coratian, Serbian, and Bosnian translations of everything wiped out. The terrorism thing is a straw man, it’s all about ethnic hatred. The Turks are notorious for hating Kurds, and they feel giving them ANYTHING, even a translation of Firefox, legitimizes them and their ethnicity, and strengthens the Kurdish desire for their own state. Turks feel about Kurds the way Arabs feel about Jews.
I find it rather humorous that if there are Kurdish speakers and readers that other people would attempt to deny them a translation if one were to exist. After all, downloading a Kurdish translation would be completely optional and it would be tasked to the person responsible for creating the translation and enjoyed by those who read/write Kurdish so what’s the huge deal? We could just as easily establish a Klingon or Wookie translation, sure there may not be THAT MANY Klingon or Wookie “speakers or writers” but it would exist simply as an option for those who may WANT or even NEED it.
If you don’t need the translation, it’s about as simple as not downloading it.
We have a Provençal version of Firefox in the works, the target audience is maybe 10.000 people at best, how dare we care about so few people :)
Oh my god we have Basque and Irish versions of Firefox, Mozilla is actively supporting ETA and IRA terrorists !!! ;)
BTW, the people that write these hatred messages and deny the very existence of the Kurdish language quickly forget that Kurdish is not only spoken in Turkey and is actually an official language in Irak…
Klingon is an interesting idea but I’d really prefer an Elvish version of Firefox, *that* would be cool !
A lot of these messages look like minor variants of each other without much to differentiate them in terms of logical process. Maybe the same poster or a handful of posters spamming? At any rate, it’s very silly indeed.
I suggest posting the following on shiftdelete.net:
“Please stop using the Turkish language. I have researched the Turkish language and have concluded it is not real. You all must think you are very clever, making up ridiculous looking words like “görüşünüz.” But this is really a childish game and you should grow up and start using US English like the rest of the world.”
Maybe people will start sending in complaints to Google about Google Earth/Google Maps:
“I noticed that you display [insert country they hate] on your maps. Did you research that [country] actually does not exist? I’ve been to the border, and there is just a giant black void there. Please update your maps to reflect this.”
“Terrorists, Nazis, Communists, the KKK, and baby-eating aliens are behind the myth of [country] to try to gain legitimacy and form a base with which to invade Earth. You don’t support baby-eating Space Nazis, do you?
I’m afraid that if you don’t fix your maps, me and everyone who thinks like me (all 5 of us, and our pets too!) will have to boycott your free services… unless we need to use them again.”
Robert, I’m not sure anyone would ever have objected to an Irish language version of Firefox. Irish is the second official language of the Republic of Ireland. Whatever the relationship between the two nations of Northern Ireland (a country distinct from the Republic of Ireland and a member of the United Kingdom), no-one ever objected to the existence of the Republic nor to the idea that some small fraction of its population continue to speak Irish.
I motion to remove support for American English because British is the only true English language and “American English” was used by American terrorists (or “patriots” as they would have you believe) opposed to British Colonial rule to spread their propaganda, and besides American isn’t even a language, anyway. That’s why it’s called English, not American.
This is even more funny, considering that the gouvernment owned public TV stations in Turkey have programs in Kurdish for their Kurdish speaking audience. Seems they don’t know what’s going on in their own country.
Welcome to the Turkish mindset. It might only be surprising for Americans as they only care that Turkey is their NATO partner and let them use their bases to bomb others. Actually, Turkey is a country with a medieval mindset. We here in Europe know that (except our politicians)
You have to understand Turkish people. We are suffering from a terrorist organization since August 15, 1984 that named PKK which is a abbreviation of “Partiye Karkere Kurdistan”, translates into “Kurdistan Workers’ Party”. Because of this terrorist organization, we are very sentive everytihng about Kurds, and Kurdish people. We don’t hate Kurds, nor we don’t like them. We are feeling the same as you feel as an american or european resident to Middle East people after 9-11 and the following terrorist attacs. But we don’t behave Kurdish people, like you behave Middle East people.
If you ask me, I’m not comfortable about Firefox supporting Kurdish language, this might be an (and likely) political act, and I don’t want my browser to be a toy of politicians.
If you want to know why we are so sensitive, please check this site http://pkk.ataturk.org/ or do a google search on pkk.
We are just very sensitive, thats all.
Ps:sorry for my poor English writing capabilities.
Being a Mozilla contributor I HIGHLY doubt the decision to support Kurdish was political. It was likely the case that someone who was bi-lingual in Kurdish volunteered his time to translate Firefox into Kurdish. Thats how it is with many other translations.
Most of the terrorists to America and its allies speak Arabic but we don’t ban Arabic from Firefox, because that would just harm the freedom and accessibility of the web that Mozilla is all about. If another country hated Turkey and wanted us to remove the Turkish language Firefox, should we listen to them?
I’m sorry you feel this way and I understand your position but I (and I’m sure many others) oppose censoring Firefox in any way. People who speak Kurdish have as much of a right to use Firefox and the web as people who speak Turkish, Arabic or English.
Can anyone find me a single Firefox Basque user who is not native in Castilian? or French? A single Frisian user who is not native in Danish? A single New Aramaic user who is not native in English? A single Irish user who is not native in English? A single New Norwegian user who is not native in Bokmal? (and the list will soon include Kurdish…)
What IS the reason these translations exist? I understand it’s not intended to be a political statement from Mozilla, but it certainly is by those who made and submitted the translations. Mozilla is just naive and letting the nationalists abuse it.