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[rpd] Improving participation of francophone and arab country

Chevalier du Borg virtual.borg at
Thu Dec 31 10:42:28 UTC 2015


just to clarify, you and I are on the same page.

2015-12-31 10:12 GMT+04:00 Andrew Alston <Andrew.Alston at>:

> Again, written as a random citizen of the Internet, and not necessarily
> representative of any organisation to which I am affiliated.
> Ok, lets step back a second and look entirely at the policy side of this.
> Firstly, a policy can have multiple authors.
> Secondly, if the author of a policy wants consensus on a policy, it is up
> to that author to engage the community and lobby for the policy proposal.
> Part of that lobbying is to ensure your policy is understood across
> language barriers.

this exactly what i meant when i respond earlier by saying "communication
is what the hearer or listener does". if the point of writing in
arabic/french/swahili/hausa is to prove a point (and get ignored, then go
ahead). if anyone really wants to influence (which is what policy
discussions are about) - then u'll do it in the language that give you best

> I would there for argue that the author of a policy could go out, find a
> co-author that fell into the language which he was NOT writing in, and have
> a translation done and submit the policy to the PDP in multiple languages,
> without AfriNIC actually getting involved in the translation.  This would
> also serve to build a bridge between the various language groups, and it
> would greatly assist the author in getting his policy passed, since it goes
> without saying that a policy that is not well understood will probably not
> pass consensus.

this will be a great thing to do. And right now, i don't see anything that
stops anyone from doing so .... IF they actually want to.

> That being said, when it comes to policy implementation, there has to be
> an agreement that policy implementation has to always be against a single
> language version, to avoid a potential problem where mis-translation could
> result in conflicting versions and create problems for the staff.  (I have
> seen this happen before in other places outside of AfriNIC).

I've try myself ... translating even the word 'policy' into french has been
tricky. I agree official policy remain in english.

> I will also say that for myself, I would be far happier if a policy
> translation came from one of the co-authors of the policy, since I would
> have more faith in the translation than I would if it was translated by an
> external party.  Technical translation is a tricky thing, and we’ve seen it
> times and again at meetings where at times the translation can be extremely
> misleading.


Borg le Chevalier
"Common sense is what tells us the world is flat"
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