Does your language use English words for computers and the internet or do you have your own?

Does your language use English words for computers and the internet, or do you have your own?

I'm interested in the ways in which non-English speaking cultures are breaking away from dominant North American metaphors and concepts related to computers and the internet. I think that increased international use will radically change the way in which we view the 'landscapes' of cyberspace and I'm looking toQuestion prove that theory by finding new words and phrases in non-English languages. I'd very much like your help.

  1. I'm looking for examples of ways in which non-English speaking cultures have either translated English terms or invented entirely different concepts for the same feature. For example, is 'homepage' directly translated using words which mean 'home' and 'page', or are different concepts used for this feature? Does your language directly translate computer terms like 'surf'; 'cloud'; 'stream'; 'root folder'; 'chatroom'; 'memory'; 'address'; 'field' etc or use other words which may or may not mean the same thing ? I'm interested in the terms (with translations please!) and the context in which they are used.
  2. Plus: is there anything specific about your country or culture that I should be thinking about in relation to this research? Issues of self-representation, for instance, or culturally-specific modes of group vs individual behaviour? I'd be grateful for your input.

I would very much appreciate it if you could email your examples to me at sue.thomas@dmu.ac.uk Any that I use will, of course, be attributed unless you request anonymity. Please note that your responses could find their way into my blog or my book so do please be aware of that when you reply. There is more information about the Research Ethics aspect of this project here. Many thanks.

4 thoughts on “Does your language use English words for computers and the internet or do you have your own?”

  1. i’m a 17 years old from romania. here we all use the english terms, rarely making a translation. some words sound good when being read in romanian, also, and so they become romanian neologisms (for instance internet). i noticed that manuals and magazines about computers started writing words like “mouse” with romanian spelling, so that they would sound like in english. at school they try to replace english with romanian, but still, we write and speak the english terms a lot.

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  2. Many thanks Irina. Please could you post some examples of words like ‘mouse’ with Romanian spelling? I’d be very interested to see them.
    Also, are there any English computer words which sound really bad in Romanian, so that you have to invent a new word?

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