It's æmeising vøtt æ bunsj of æshols vån kæn faind on de web

Fra Toronto har Scott Remborg sendt dette anglofile svaret til Christian Jørgensens språklige utblåsning fredag.

Since you so warmly embrace English terminology, and since English is the standard on the Net, I shall respond to you in English. After all, why waste your time (or perhaps you'd prefer "vai væist jår tajm") speaking Norwegian, a language spoken by a little more than 4 million sheep heads like yourself in the Northern reaches of Europe?

If your little missive is indeed serious, I'm not sure that it's of much use to argue against you; you sound pretty set in your ways. But I can't resist asking if you've considered *why* it sounds so silly to you to call a browser "web titter" or the web for a "vev", or a TV for "fjernsyn"?

It might not sound very cool to you, but I can assure you that to a well-trained English ear, these phrases sound just as silly in English as they do in Norwegian. I think the reason you, and many Norwegians like you, believe that many expressions sound so much cooler in English is that they sound more exotic, and the exotic stems from the fact that you're not very intimate with the meaning.

As soon as the phrase is translated and the meaning stares you right in the face, it sounds plain silly, or as you might say: "harry". I can assure you that terms like World Wide Web, Mosaic, Browser, file, Window, menus, etc etc all sounded really silly when they first surfaced in English in the technology context. It wasn't until they'd been on our tongues a few times that we accepted them. I believe Norwegian expressions are no different.

And do you really think that cool factor is sufficient to justify bastardizing the Norwegian language? Is it really worth making it incoherent to the great majority of Norwegians? If you do, why stop with just a few phrases from technology and popular culture? I mean, couldn't you see yourself saying something really cool, like: its æmeising vøtt æ bunsj of æshols vån kæn faind on de web, esse.

Scott Remborg

Toronto (Tåråntå)

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