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Translate WordPress: WordPress.com Home Pages in Hebrew, Farsi, Bulgarian, and More

One thing I am very passionate about is breaking communication and language barriers. So I was thrilled to see this morning’s announcement that WordPress.com is starting to release language specific “home pages”.

As Ryan wrote in his blog, we’re starting to enable more and more languages that are finishing the community translation process. Personally I’m very excited about this because it really represents the core of what WordPress is about: providing the tools to allow people to communicate and connect with folks they care about.

As a next step, we’ve been creating WP.com home pages for each of these languages, so if you wanted to cruise WordPress.com in Hebrew, Farsi, or Bulgarian you could. To help you navigate these, we’ve thrown a big list at the bottom of the pages on WP.com that take you to the different portals.

Among the positive and interesting comments on the announcement was a very detailed description of how WordPress.com should “bend to the will” of the Chinese government and add the filters necessary to make WordPress.com acceptable to the Chinese government. I don’t know what the decision that that will be, but it certainly brings up some interesting issues. Many companies are catering to the Chinese government, reaping millions of dollars in income and doing so with the excuse that they will be in place to make billions when the Chinese government falls or changes its mind. WordPress has a lot of open source and “open minded” folks in our community, so this is a very hot issue for them.

The work going on behind the scenes to create translation files and keeping WordPress as translatable as possible is very exciting and moving into high drive. Stay tuned for more exciting news on that front.


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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network

Member of the 9Rules Blogging Network

3 Comments

  1. Posted August 9, 2006 at 12:14 pm | Permalink

    Anyone who caters to the Chinese government is an accomplice to mass murder on a surreal scale.

    While it’s true they have opened and improved in the last 50 years, it’s also true that it’s basically the same government that is responsible for 75 million deaths (cite).

    Godwin’s law would not bother to mention Hitler if it were describing reality. It would instead only speak of Mao and Stalin.

  2. Posted August 9, 2006 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

    Hey Lorelle,

    I’m glad you published this and brought up the China censorship issue in the 9rules network.

    I just want to reiterate what I wrote on the WordPress.com blog and state that the filters I suggest would work on the posting and commenting level of blogs registered to Chinese users, so WordPress.com blogs in other languages would not be filtered in China in any way.

    In this way, Chinese citizens would have unrestricted access to WordPress.com blogs in every language, including Chinese (one could always register one’s blog’s primary language as English and then write it in Chinese) and no more restricted access to registered mainland Chinese blogs than is currently imposed on the Chinese people anyway.

    Practically speaking then, WordPress.com would be de-censoring itself in China by putting filters on the mainland China Chinese language localization of WordPress.com. Yes, mainland Chinese bloggers would still be restricted in what they can write in Chinese, but there would be no restriction on what they can read in any language.

  3. Posted August 9, 2006 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

    The debate about how to deal with the Great Firewall is hugely important. Kevin’s posst reminds me that sometimes you bring down an oppressive institution by making little cracks in it. If, as Kevin says, his idea will bring a little more openness to Chinese citizens (at least in terms of what they can see) and does not impose any new restrictions in terms of what people can say, perhaps this is a good thing. I’ll be following this with much interest — I suspect there is a great deal more to be said by the intelligent people who make up WordPress.

    As for translation in general, anything that increases our understanding of each other is to be applauded and welcomed. And USED. I for one am going to go and check out all those blogs I used to click on by. The only trouble is that I’m never going to be able to get out of my house now!


3 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] WordPress.com has an ongoing project to help translate WordPress as well, so help is needed all around to make WordPress as international as possible. Come join the fun and share your language skills today! […]

  2. […] Translate WordPress: WordPress.com Home Pages in Hebrew, Farsi, Bulgarian, and More […]

  3. […] WordPress.com Home Pages in Hebrew, Farsi, Bulgarian, and More […]

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