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Re: Bootstrapping a cooperative conlang

From:Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...>
Date:Sunday, November 18, 2007, 8:04
--- Philip Newton <philip.newton@...> wrote:

> > ...not to mention a willingness to accept that your definition is not > the law. If you have enough participants who insist that "you're using > it all wrong; a "zanisa" is *any* small mammal, not just a mouse or > rat, and if you narrow it down, you're sick and wrong and probably > grill babies and push little old ladies into the street", the conlang > won't be going anywhere. Even if that's the defintion they "learned". > > Cheers, > -- > Philip Newton <philip.newton@...> >
If there is one universal constant in linguistics it is that there always have been, and always will be people who tell you that you are using the language wrong. Imagine Chaucer telling Shakespeare how he butchered English, or Shakespeare telling us how badly WE butcher the language. And that doesn't even take into account regional differences. As long as language changes and grows the old fogeys will always be telling the young whippersnappers how badly they are butchering the language. In a rapidly evolving conlang situation that tendency would be even more pronounced. On the other hand, peaceful coexistence is still possible. Consider those strange British folks who insist on calling the trunk of a car a "boot". Everyone knows "boot" refers to long-legged footwear, yet still we manage to coexist peacefully in spite of their shocking misuse of the language. ;-) --gary