Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

Why we don't discuss auxlangs on CONLANG list

From:Rick Morneau <ram@...>
Date:Thursday, November 5, 1998, 12:03
Ray Brown writes:
> > But surely if a conlang of whatever nature is mentioned here, may we not > discuss it? I think both Matt & David (and others) do agree on that point. >
I also agree, but there is an important distinction between artlangs and auxlangs that we have to keep in mind. Artlangers are not trying to "sell" their languages, while auxlangers ARE trying. Because of this, IAL designers have to be willing to listen to objective criticism of their designs, and some (most? all?) are simply not willing to do this. In the early days of this list, I pointed out what I considered to be flaws in some auxlangs. The result was long heated arguments that got nowhere except to cause a lot of bad feelings. I DO want to discuss the technical strengths and weaknesses of various designs (especially my own!), but I've been burnt by experience. I love discussing the best ways to accomplish certain language design goals. But this, by implication, may mean that other approaches are not as good. Which means that you'll step on someone's toes, whether you want to or not. And then the fighting begins. Another thing to consider is that artlangers can afford to be flexible. If you point out a better way to do something, most artlangers will thank you for the good advice and make an appropriate change in their language. Auxlangers, on the other hand, may not have this luxury, especially if their designs are complete or nearly complete, and change is impractical. Instead, an auxlanger may feel the need to defend their choices. To do otherwise would be to admit that their design is flawed. It's almost impossible to get into a fight when discussing an artlang. It's almost inevitable with an auxlang. Maybe that's why most people don't want to discuss auxlangs on this list. Regards, Rick -- Rick Morneau Denizen of Idaho, USA