Wikimedia language policies
|This page is kept for historical interest. Any policies mentioned may be obsolete. If you want to revive the topic, you can use the talk page or start a discussion on the community forum.|
This page has been superceded by the unified Language proposal policy.
There are a number of different language policies for Wikimedia projects. If a policy is only a proposed policy, it should be clearly marked as such.
In this page, "appropriate local language" refers to the language of the language-specific subdomain where applicable, and "foreign language" refers to any language other than appropriate local language.
Wikibooks, Wiktionary, Wikipedia, and Wikiquotes
In Wikibooks, Wiktionary, Wikipedia, and Wikiquotes, the main content language is always the language of the specific subdomain.
- In Wikibooks, language-teaching books or linguistic descriptions of languages are allowed to contain content in a foreign language as nessecary.
- In Wiktionary, words can be in any language, but definitions should always be in the appropriate local language.
- In Wikipedia, policy is not entirely clear and rules tend to differ from language to language. However, original lyrics of national anthems, foreign names (of people, places, corporations, books, &c.), and similar things are generally accepted. In an article on a language, it is generally allowed to use the language in a minimal capacity, so long as the language of description is the appropriate local language, and a short sample text in a language is sometimes allowed.
- In Wikiquotes, quotes are allowed in any language, so long as a translation is provided in the appropriate local language.
Meta, Commons, and Foundation-wiki
In Meta, Wikimedia Commons, and Foundation-wiki, content in any language is accepted.
However, Commons has fairly specific policy with regards to the naming of media, which can be found here.
Adding a version to an existing project
Currently, with the exception of Wikinews, there is no streamlined way to request a new project.
- Ask on wikipedia-l, wiktionary-l, wikibooks-l, or wikiquote-l as appropriate,
- Add a request to Requests for new languages,
- Ask a developer directly. This is not recommended as developers will be wary of complying with a request without community approval beforehand, and are already very busy.
Your request may or may not be accepted. There are no concrete rules for which languages are accepted and which are not.
- For your language to be accepted, it may be a constructed language or a "dead language", but in those cases there should be a substantial number of speakers. "Dead languages" usually have a better chance than constructed languages.
- If you do not personally speak the language, your request is likely to be denied.
- The destinction between languages and dialects (or lack thereof) is troublesome. If your language is considered by some to be a dialect of another, you should be prepared to defend against such claims. Generally this can be done by proving that they are "sufficiently separate to warrant separate literatures".
You do not need to request new languages for 3 of the projects, which are completely multilingual: Meta, Commons, and Foundation-wiki. You may translate existing content or create new content in any language you like for these projects without first gaining approval. Languages may have sites in these projects that they don't in the others, for example there is a Cantonese version of the Meta and Commons mainpages, but there is no Cantonese Wikipedia, Wikibooks, Wikiquote, or Wiktionary; Simplified and Traditional Chinese content is disunified in Meta, Commons, and Foundation-wiki while it is unified in the other projects.
All languages for which there is a language version of a project, have a Wikipedia. However, http://kr.wikipedia.org, http://mo.wikipedia.org, and http://tlh.wikipedia.org are read-only, while http://kr.wikiquote.org, http://mo.wiktionary.org, and http://tlh.wiktionary.org are editable. However, these may be made read-only too.