Hi rodents,
since two weeks at max I started seeing new people posting on international communities (aka communities not strictly linked to a language or nation) in other languages than english.

While I’m ok with seeing multiple languages in the main page, I personally think it’s not so ok to post not in english in communities like c/asklemmy, c/technology or others.

I’m not expecting to understand anything when snooping in c/espanol or c/hispagatos because they are not international communities, in the sense that they chose to specifically target spanish-speaking people and It’s completely understandable.
It is their choice and that must be respected.
The same could be said if anyone wandered in c/italy and tried to understand the couple of posts in there, without knowing a word of italian.

Still, when I came across the new posts made by a newly subscribed rodent, written in persian (I think that’s the language, another user said it was persian, I’m not sure), I must admit I felt they were out of place because only a handful of people might be able to understand them without a translator.
From what I saw, other people downvoted them, probably for the same reason.

I’m conflicted because on one hand I’m all for niches, foreign cultures, local communities and so on, but on the other hand I’m also in favour of internationalization and since english was chosen for us for quite some years now, I feel in those communities we should try to stick to it, for the sake of understandability.

Am I too strict about this? After all, no rules were put in place to say something about this.
Maybe I just need to shut up and use a translator, I don’t know.

What is your opinion on the matter?

I honestly don’t like to have to see only English speakers on every single community, I wanted us to open up communities to international audience, I think it honestly a lot better overall if we have more diversity of opinions and languages in every community rather than sitting in an echo chamber. Sure, specific community can enact their language policy, but for overall server, I think we ought to open up a bit to the international community. That just my opinion.


I must admit I felt they were out of place because only a handful of people might be able to understand them without a translator.

I think it is the other way round – in using whatever language they choose, they are seeking individuals who understand said language. If no one on the platform can understand the language, it is a miss for them, not you. For some reason, and even though I don’t mean that you are doing it, this sounds like those convenience store “speak English, this is America” moments. But the discussion it elicited is really helpful in understanding language issues on platforms.


I personally don’t really mind it, if I see something in another language I’ll usually just scroll past it, maybe checking in on the comments to see if anyone’s offering a translation. Maybe in the future there can be some kind of language filter if you really don’t want to see non-english posts for whatever reason


Yeah that’s what I’m doing as of now.
Mostly because even though I am curious about the post and what it could say, I don’t have a tool which translates persian to english, nor italian.
I know there’s google translate, but I try using deepl or other alternatives whenever I can (google can screw itself for so many reasons).

For the filter, nutomic said this in another comment.


I think the mods of each community have to decide for that community. Each community could have a different language policy, and also I think it’s important that a mod knows that language. I doubt there should be a site-wide policy, unless there’s some extreme circumstances to warrant it.

Practically speaking, if I post in a language to a community that the community doesn’t understand, I’d probably get discouraged just by the post not getting responses or upvotes. If I persist in spite of it obviously not working, the mods could ask me to stop.


I agree on the first part and I also fail to understand how a user unable to understand a language can become moderator for a community speaking it. It sounds so unreal, yet so real due to real life examples.

Apart from that, theorically speaking, if no restriction was put in place and it was confirmed, upon asking, that I could post in any language I want in any of the comms, then I could probably ignore an admin telling me to stop just because he can’t understand.
I know I could be a dick, but why should I stop? I might not get any reply today, but get one the next week.

…and I just realised that takes me back to the starting point.

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