Multi-lingual Communities

I did a search and didn’t find anything…

I have a small site targeted to residents of my county. Most speak English and no or not very much Spanish. We have many hispanic residents who speak Spanish and no or very little English.

Have any of you been successful in building multi-lingual communities?

If so, what tools/programs/scripts have you found especially useful?

Uhm, no - but I think it’s a good question!

I do know that some scripts allow the user to choose between 1 or more languages but I don’t think that this affects all content (say, the posts in a forum). Can’t think of which they are, I’ll have to see if I can do some digging.

I suppose you could set up seperate forums for the seperate languages, but then you’ve effectively segregated your community (and that’s so pre-1960s!)

(and that’s so pre-1960s!)

Yeah. Totally 20th Century stuff. :stuck_out_tongue:
Time to move on… Bring people together. :tup:

phpBB has multi-language support, right?

languages are always a picky topic on message boards which are trying to be “international”. on one hand, you want everyone to talk to each other but on the other hand you want those who don’t speak english to be able to talk to each other. from my experience, as soon as you create a language-specific forum, then those who speak this language immediately stop posting in english and only talk to each others in their forum, effectivly killing the international community. i’ve this issue on one of my message boards, for now i have created one “meeting” forum where i made it clear that non-english languages were “allowed” there.

long rant, sorry :rolleyes:

That’s the kind of behaviour I suspected might take place if language specific boards were set up. I remember back in high school our school was pretty multi-cultural and we all hung out and got along great. When we got to college and there were suddenly all these cultural groups to join (the Hellenic Society, the Italian Club, etc, etc) we all started to drift apart and unconsciously segregate.

I think therefore that if you want everyone in the community to fraternize together that joint-language boards must be the way to go. Things might get a little confusing at times, but you could always include links to translation services and try to hire on moderators who are bilingual to smooth things along.

That certainly is a tough one.

If you run a “small” site, as you said, you probably can’t sustain two popular forums.

It seems to me your choices are, as mentioned earlier, use one forum with multilingual posts, or two seperate forums.

Either way, someone is going to suffer. So, basically, I have no idea. Let us know how it works out.

By the way, how do you manage the rest of your site? Are there multiple versions, is all copy provided in two languages, or something else?

Good luck.

let me come out with a beter solution

The truth of the matter is that a lot of Hispanics segregate themselves. I have a lot of latin friends who are completely bilingual and move easily among both cultures, however their parents stick to spanish speaking TV and Radio. Only read Spanish publications and when they go places they ask for interpreters. I strongly believe in integrating everyone as one and if there were to be the need to supply aid to those that speak another language, then be it. But we should not, by any means create one “club” or community specifically because they do not know english. The same goes for Chinese, Italian, French, etc.

I haven’t personally, but Reddit is available in many different languages.

I’m not sure exactly how it works (or if it works at all), but in the preferences you can select a language labelled “content language”. Give that a shot, and see what you think.

Just so everyone is aware, the original post was back in 2002. While certainly an interesting topic, be aware that the OP may have found a solution to his problem in the last 8 years : )