English or French? (was: Linne or Linnaeous?)

marco.floriani@inwind.it marco.floriani at INWIND.IT
Thu Feb 12 15:22:30 CST 2004

Dear Jacques and Guillaume,

I don't want to give rise to an endless linguistical debate on Taxacom
(this is not the purpose of this forum), anyway I would like to add a
couple of thoughts...

> [Guillaume]
> je signale, pour information, que j'ai envoyé sur ce forum un
> message en français (rappelé ci-dessous) le 4 avril 2003 : je n'ai,
> à ce jour, reçu aucune réponse. Je ne sais pas si l'on peut parler
> de politesse, mais force est de constater que lorsque l'on se
> s'exprime pas en anglais, on ne vous répond pas [...]

Some months ago I posted on Taxacom a message IN ENGLISH, and I did
not receive any answer. We must accept that there are some questions
which remain unanswered, and this is not necessarily dependent on the
language in which they are written. In my case I found the answer
somewhere else, but in case I didn't maybe I would have re-posted the
message and someone would have helped me.

On the other hand, both of you, Guillaume and Jacques, know that I
frequently post on a French-speaking mycology forum; despite my scarce
knowledge of French, I always try to avoid writing in Italian (my
language), since I have often noted that my posts in Italian are not
fully understood by the other participants. Then, since I do not know
a good Italian-French on-line translator, I prepare my posts in
English and then I translate them with Babelfish, and finally I adjust
them as I can. Quite a lot of work, isn't it? But since the forum is
run and read by (mostly) francophone mycologists, I make this extra
effort and will continue to do so. Please note that also Scott
Redhead, who could legitimately use English on that forum, prefers to
pay a little effort to write in French. Think about this...

Since I presume both of you can write English easily enough, I would
expect the same kind of attitude towards a forum of (mostly)
anglophone taxonomists.

> [Melot]
> Vous pouvez retourner les choses dans le sens où vous le voulez
> que vous ne changerez rien à la réalité : toutes les langues n'ont
> pas un statut identique. Que vous le vouliez ou non, le satut de la
> langue tchèque n'est pas équivalent à celui du français, de
> l'anglais ou de l'allemand.

"...ou de l'italien", I suppose I could say... nevertheless, I would
never post here in Italian. I read Italian literature, listen to
Italian music, write most of my papers in Italian, but in several
occasions I think that, for the sake of effective communication, it
is better if I write in English, without being a threat for the
Italian cultural identity; as a German friend once wittily observed:
"The Coliseum will survive this..."

That said, I hope I didn't offend anyone with this messge (by the way
I do not doubt that Jacques will answer "a tono"), and be sure that I
really enjoy reading Jacques' and Guillaume's messages, in any
language they are written. But, please think about it: are you sure
you can't make a step back for once and write something in English? I
think also the "Tour Eiffel" will survive this.

Marco Floriani

Marco Floriani
Via Vigolana 8
I-38057 Pergine Valsugana TN
e-mail: <marco.floriani at inwind.it>

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