Skip to comments.China bars English words in all publications
Posted on 12/24/2010 5:55:44 AM PST by Pinkbell
BEIJING, Dec 23 (ANTARA) - Chinese newspapers, books and websites will no longer be allowed to use English words and phrases, the country`s publishing body has announced, saying the "purity" of the Chinese language is in peril.
The General Administration of Press and Publication, which announced the new rule on Monday, said the increasing use of English words and abbreviations in Chinese texts had caused confusion and was a means of "abusing the language".
Such practices "severely damaged the standard and purity of the Chinese language and disrupted the harmonious and healthy language and cultural environment, causing negative social impacts," the body said on its website.
"It is banned to mix at will foreign language phrases such as English words or abbreviations with Chinese publications, creating words of vague meaning that are not exactly Chinese or of any foreign language," it said.
GAPP said companies which violated the regulation would face "administrative punishment" without offering specifics.
English abbreviations such as NBA (National Basketball Association), GDP (gross domestic product), CPI (consumer price index) and WTO (World Trade Organization) are commonly used in Chinese publications.
The body left a small loophole, saying that "if necessary", English terms could be used but now must be followed by a direct translation of the abbreviation or an explanation in Chinese, according to the regulation.
The names of people or places in English also must be translated, the China Daily reported Wednesday.
One editor at a Beijing publishing house told the newspaper that the new GAPP regulation could actually result in reduced understanding.
"The intention of protecting the Chinese language is good. But in an age of globalisation, when some English acronyms like WTO have been widely accepted by readers, it might be too absolute to eliminate them," the editor said.
(Excerpt) Read more at thaivisa.com ...
The Chinese are turning French.
That’s mighty French of them.
But what about diversity? Wah! Paging Tom Friedman...
Don’t worry. We’re banning English, too, and replacing it with babble...
You mean I gots to learn that stupid chicken scratching?
Beats America where we can’t even get English declared the National language, and the first thing that you hear on the phone is press 1 for English.
China probably sees how we are spiraling down into the swamp of multicultural devolution.
Good for them. At least they are proud of their culture...
>>Something basic must be going in the crapper in China.
Yeah...something basic like Chinese Culture. When you let foreigners push a foreign language into your own until your people use the new language without thinking, you have surrendered a part of your culture.
Good thing we don’t have any of that here!
“Purity of Essence”.... “Essence of Purity”... I keep remembering the phrase from Dr. Strangelove.
I’m unaware of what the French did. Did they ban English in publications as well for the “purity” of the French langauge?
And just when French is about to be replaced by Arabic...
Good! Can we please go back to “Peking” and “Mao Tse Tung?”
English is on the march. I have attributed it to the fact that technology has been developed in English speaking countries. All computer terminology is in English. Four hundred years from now will it be Chinese?
I wish America would do this with English. Heck we have Spanish everywhere. Good thing I can understand and speak it (not great) or I would have a heck of a time.
Hop To Hop Sing
Demonstrating the flexibility Chinese languages have in absorbing words from others, Min ~ with 8 tones ~ is estimated by authorities in the matter to have a vocabulary which is at least 30% Dutch in origin!
The folks who've been pushing Mandarin as a language for general use among the Chinese know what can happen ~ next thing you now it'd be just like Min!
Frankly, as Bill Gates has demonstrated with the icon set he's inserted into the world computing environment, Chinese, both written and spoken, can be subverted successfully with improved characters and words.
The Chinese are going to lose this one.
Notice that English accepted Bill's new characters without a whimper.
Yeah. It was a few decades ago. Of course it’s difficult to ban the language of the folks who invented almost everything.
It's interesting to listen to people speak both languages in those areas where both are taught and used. Malaysia is rapidly developing a tonal creole that could easily displace older forms of Min and make further pursuit of Mandarin meaningless.
Um, they know the truth.
All 1.6 billion of them. Who look like each other.
Oddly, doesn't seem to have handicapped them.
You know...I think that's at the Urban Legend status.
I see it in print and hear it said as a joke...but I've never heard that when presented with a voice menu on the phone. It's always, "To continue in Spanish, press number one...Para continuar en Español, presione numero uno."
And I spend a lot of time on the phone for business.
r2 r2 r2
I’m with you on this. There are mixed feelings, but at least they are trying to preserve the purity of their written language. I just don’t like the authoritarian angle.
Don’t most of us wish our gov’t would do the same sort of thing and declare English our prime and only language? This creeping dual languages in everything is insidious and the only way I have of fighting back is being selective. When I see a label (package of food, for example) in English and one with both English and Spanish, there is no doubt which one I will choose.
I must say I’m biased as I’ve studied the Chinese language and it is fascinating.
¿Cómo está ya'll?
Well, we already do this for some things over here. How many ways has Qaddafi/Kadhafy been spelled because it would be perfectly ridiculous to put the Arabic text (which reads right to left) which is utterly unrecognizable by most English speakers in an English news stories.
In the late 40s and early 50s, when Japan was being Americanized, the Japanese incorporated English words into their language but with a Japanese flair.
My favorite was a word used to describe a new speed control adopted on streetcars. It was called “futopedaru.”
They’re just so awesome. (snicker)
When something is written in Chinese, how can you tell if it is English?
In the 90’s the French didn’t like how english words were creeping ino taily use, words like mouse, re-boot ect.. so they forced everyone to use french words. Also french TV has mandated french content, to avoid american shows from taking over the airwaves.. If you’ve seen the shows on Telemundo with 50 yr old hosts treating women like crap... welcome to French TV prime time
“Hop Sing make-uh frap-jack for Hosssss”
~ Hop Sing
How about all the Chinese phrases making their way into the English language? Like ‘you need a face lift’ (chin tu fat in the original Chinese) and ‘cleaning an automobile’ (wa shing kah), etc. Hypocrites!
Didn’t work in France. The scientists, in particular, went nuts.
My favorite is, “Meri Karisumasu”!
Peace On Earth
> Didnt work in France. The scientists, in particular, went nuts.
The French actually tried to decree that all computer programs had to be written with a French-based computer language. I think they had a French-based flavor of Algol that they tried to foist on everybody.
Problem is that virtually *ALL* the computer chips used in PCs are designed in the U.S and use English-based assembly language. So the French would have had to devise their own assembly language, Assembler, Linker, and Loader, which, for every CPU chip I know about, are all in English.
Needless to say, the effort was DOA.
As a software engineer, I am not aware of any computer programming language, compiler, assembler, linker, or loader based in any language other than English. All commands for these utilities are in English or English-based mnemonics.
Or the Chinese fast-food delivery service.
China has already abused their language by using simplified characters.
Certainly more appropriate to the Season!
And personally,I DESPISE icons taking the place of clearly worder labels! I find it much easier to learn a new word ,even if it is not my native language,than try to remember or decipher some strange pictograph.
I wish we had done that with spanish
The French Government established the “Academie Francaise” about two hundred and fifty years ago. They stocked it with the leading intellectuals of the day, including Voltaire, Montesqieu, and even a few Americans. Their mission was to protect the purity of the French language.
There’s nothing new in history. The French have been uppity for centuries.
/English is a living language, made up of German, Latin, French, and Greek elements. Anglophones, people that speak primarily English, make up more new words each year than all other language-speakers combined. There are economic reasons for “English First,” but no historical/cultural ones beyond fear of change.
“China has already abused their language by using simplified characters.”
I’d imagine they had to; how do you make a keyboard or typewriter with 2,000 characters?
Good! Can we please go back to Peking and Mao Tse Tung?
Well, on Jan. 20, 2009, we took a “great leap” toward Maoism, at least!/sarcasm
It’s about time the Chinese stopped kowtowing to the West, they should have been more gung ho about this years ago.
There is a big difference between having an official language (nothing wrong with that) and declaring what phrases can be included in the the official language.
English is chock full of words and phrases from other languages. To try and prevent any more would be a futile task.
Le Big Mac is already a fait accompli!
I can’t believe I missed the meaning of what I wrote that badly. Thanks for pointing it out.