Language specific forums

So, after seeing the German translation forum post, and that it is, perhaps unsurprisingly, written in mostly German, is it perhaps worth considering adding some language specific forums for various nationals? Maybe not necessarily now, but as Sponge actually picks up as a server implementation, this would foster increased communication and inclusion for those who want to use Sponge but don’t have very good English skills, and will stop the community potentially fragmenting into other non-Sponge (and thus potentially non-authoritative) sites. It would also compliment the translation of the documentation - why have one if you don’t have the other?

Of course, this is a huge undertaking, and would necessitate help from those who could speak the languages in question - it’s not something I suggest should be implemented straight away. Indeed, I couldn’t really help with that, I’m embarrased to say myself, as a Brit, that my understanding of other modern languages is somewhat awful, only able to say basic things in French and a some things in German, albiet probably incorrectly. However, if there are individuals who would like to sum up key news posts in their language so that others who perhaps ask questions (and therefore annoy the moderators) because they don’t understand the full body of a post, it might just help those who are looking for info on the state of Sponge (or whatever) but don’t have a good grasp of English.

I’m half expecting to be shot down here, and I would somewhat understand why. However, I figured I’d pose the question anyway - even though it doesn’t affect me at all.


I don’t really see the necessity for that tbh. The only place where people speak otehr languages than english is the docs category where it doesn’t really bother me (personally, you may view that differently). Everywhere else people speak english.
Additionally, i think having different forums/forum parts/subforums for different languages may actually harm communication as it is prone to (at least partly) cut the community into pieces as people tend to prefer talking to people who speak their mother tongue.

Just going to chime in on this, I don’t see the need to have language specific forums. As @5tingr4y pointed out, it would split up the community and it really isn’t necessary. I would also like to point out that it would place a bit of unneeded work on the team at this time and would likely add unnecessary bulk to the forums which I don’t feel we need. Again this is just my point of view.

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Of course most posts in the german thread are german. We use it to discuss the german translation, for nothing else… And this works best in german :wink: All other topics around the forums (including all other docs related stuff) should stay readable for most users, i think sticking with english will work best.

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Eh, it was just a random thought I had and thought I’d thow it out there. Valid points - and if anything, it’ll be a good archive for viewpoints.

Plus, chrome translate and google translate are a thing.

ew. <fghbjnkml,.->


The issue with this is that we don’t really have any staff members who speak other languages let alone those who are willing to moderate. Google translate is inadequate for this

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My turn to chime in. It has been my hope all along to have language specific forums, similar to our massively broad approach to document translation. Minecraft is a game played by millions of people around the world. Speaking English shouldn’t be a barrier to your ability to communicate with people in the community. We haven’t talked much about this, but there were some ideas being floated around a while back. When the time comes, we will take it further into consideration and try to come up with a good approach to keep everything neat.

For those who thing that adding more language support to the forums would fragment the forums, think of what not adding language support would do. Those people would have to look elsewhere for support and community. Those people may find themselves on less than savory sites that act as though the represent us, but for their nationality and on a different domain. This will obviously not be true, and we won’t have a way to handle it because it will be outside of our scope and control. So to protect our potential users, to create a good community, we should foster an environment where all people are welcome. How we will do this is uncertain at this point, but should be considered.

Now, do we want a sub-forum for every single nationality or language? No. That would get out of hand fast. But we would want to pick a few major world languages, nationalities that participate in the community (German, French, Spanish, Portuguese, etc) and make them available. Discourse is designed to be a self-moderated system. This means we could get by with fewer moderators. Each sub-forum could have one person that speaks the language (as well as English to communicate with us) that can moderate and help keep the place clean. These people can be drawn in from anywhere, but more specifically from the transifex docs teams who are already committed to Sponge and working hard for the community.


Language-specific forums are a great idea!

Maybe like this:

  • Multiple Discourse Installations for different languages (with language-specific forum interface).
  • Global Accounts for all forums
  • Translate important announcements

I think a good point to start would be Announcements - if we can branch those to multiple language versions, it will give them something to read that has great relevance to the project. Each would need their own moderation/translation staff, but we have quite a few keen people around thanks to Transifex.

Ideally, I’d like to see a kind of Sponge news bulletin, something like a hybrid of Announcements and Soaked Up, where we bullet point recent developments, staff changes, priorities and aspirations. Brief discussion of some issues, important announcements, and maybe the odd interview, but largely free of both trivia and technical discussion. Something that would be indisputably worth translating and redistributing.

I have no idea how or where that would fit in the forums.


This is just an idea I came up with… We have a Teamspeak server. We could have rooms in teamspeak for different languages were people of those languages could discuss whatever they want to. The problem is that nothing would be recorded.

While I like the idea of a multilingual forum, there are some things in Discourse that don’t go well with it. One example is the Regular rank, which may be lost at any time after you’ve had it for a bit (grace period configurable, I can’t remember the default off the top of my head) if you ever go below the requirements again. The “posts read” requirement especially would require scrolling through enormous walls of content which for you will mostly consist of gibberish.

I’m sure there can be other such technical difficulties to rolling out localized subforums (cluttered categories view?), and I’ll chime in whenever I can think of any more! I do think it can be done, but it might be a bit of work :slight_smile:

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It might just be easier not to have sub forums on the main english one. Having separate languages would be best for cleanness. Even though I have no problem with reading stuff chrome incorrectly translated(well, maybe a little bit), doesn’t mean it would be the best thing to do.

I doubt anybody here really needs me, but I’d volunteer to help out moderating the german subforums. :wink:

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I think it might be helpful if the Docs topics did not appear amongst the “latest” on the main page - the same way that Off-Topic is handled. I can see the problems with a fully multilingual forum, it would be chaos.


I think that announcements would be a nice start. Maybe a sub-forum for translate support but nothing with too much topics because you will get like thousand of posts asking things that are already solved in other english forums. Also, at least read English is like a requirement to configure/work/develp.
My main language is Spanish and no, google translate is not even a thing

I’d love to be able to have Soaked Up in multiple languages!