Blog is…?


The language is one of the more complex areas of human communication. The problem of the recent era is that globalisation is making us adopt names from the place where the thing with that name originates. There is not other word for prekmurska gibanica, because prekmurska gibanica (think cake) originates from Prekmurje (a part of Slovenia) and that`s it. No sensible Englishman is going to go and translate it into “overmura moving cake” (a direct translation, old joke).

However, in the vice-versa situation, we see that Slovenes are annoyed by the word…blog. Which is an abbreviation of the word web-log. Now, the first translations were eager to include the word “dnevnik“, since the word “log” is usually used in that sense. However, dnevnik is composed out of the word DAN (day) and indicates that blogs should be written daily. Which, clearly, they are not.

The problem is that the Slovene language has fallen behind on the subject of internet and computers. We thought (as mentioned in previous post) that we had time and that the whole thing would cool off. It did not. So we found ourselves with a predicament of having to do a rush-job translating each and every word and trying to keep them in the vicinity of normality. We failed. Once the word is out and people are using it, there is no way back. That ship has sailed. And no Jonas and his merry men are going to change that.

It`s so funny since at the word blog, they should come up with a neologism, a completely new and artificial word and stop hugging that precious “dnevnik” so much. Anyone can add a letter to a word and say “Hey! Mine is better than yours!

That is not how it`s done.

The thing is, blogs are so new and so out of this world in Slovenia, that we should let the word stick. We should let things be. Blog does not sound as foreign as weblog, it has no foreign letters or characters and even the name for the person that does the blogging or the verb for the action of blogging itself sounds…well…normal. Changing blog into spletni dnevnik can and will bring silly words to life. Think of a photoblog. Spletnifotodnevnik? Broke your tongue, did you? Compare spletnifotodnevnik to fotoblog. No need to tell me who is the winner of that race. And what about a person who writes a blog? Dnevnikar? Spletni dnevnikar? Dnevnikaš? Pisec dnevnika? All those names are silly. Why? Because nobody uses them and because they bring nothing new and fresh into our language. They just add a suffix or a prefix to the word dnevnik and that`s it. Adding a suffix or a prefix to an old word sucks cocks. Because it is still an old word…in fancy wrapping. And that`s like saying blogs are something old in new wrappings. Which is not true, I don`t care how long the personal webpages have existed. Personal webpage next to a todays blog is like the first mercedes car next to a Ford KA. Sure they both have wheels and travel on road…but that`s where the comparison stops.

So please, no more of this x-dnevnik nonsense. Let blog be!


10 komentarjev na “Blog is…?

  1. Klemen

    Že lep čas te opazujem in prav zabavno se mi zdi, kako značilna zate je aroganca in prepričanost v lasten prav 🙂
    Glede prevoda bloga je med slovenskimi literati/slovenisti/humanisti potekala že precej zanimiva debata, zato je malce (milo rečeno) neumno trditi, da je bil blog sprejet “as-is”. Precej prerekanj je bilo in debata je še daleč od tega, da bi bila odločena. Že res, da se blog medtem vse bolj vriva v slovensko podzavest in publicistiko, ampak žalosti me, da se nekdo, ki se ima za nekega sploh ne kvazi intelektualca, tako zlahka sprijazni s tem. Potrebno bi se bilo zavzemati za poslovenjenje izraza, ampak znova se kaže že tolikokrat omenjeni tipični zaničevalski odnos do jezika, ko se raje meče polena pod noge tistim, ki se trudijo in predlagajo. Ja, lažje je kritizirati, ko pa bi bilo treba podati nek *pameten* predlog, se zatekaš k – angleščini. Juhej. No, če si ob vsem tem merry man, pa bodi. Le malce manj epohalno vsiljuj drugim svoja prepričanja 🙂 Just my 2 cents.

  2. ill-advised

    I agree that the word blog should stay, and that most of the proposed “translations” that have been suggested so far are silly. But I disagree with much of your reasoning.

    Of course “spletnifotodnevnik” is silly. Why, you coined it with the express purpose of having it sound silly! On the other hand, “foto dnevnik” (or “fotodnevnik”, if you prefer), sounds quite normal. There is no particular need to emphasize “spletni” just to indicate that it’s going on on the web. This is usually not terribly important, and is evident from the context anyway.

    I don’t see what’s wrong (let alone silly) with “pisec dnevnika”. In fact that is precisely how I would describe myself if I kept a diary.

    I guess that by your definition the English word “blog” sucks cocks from both ends at the same time, since it was made up of two old words — “web” and “log” are both venerable old Saxon words. If it’s OK for the English language to tinker around with the word “log” and derive something new from it, then it should also be OK for the Slovenian language to tinker around with “dnevnik” and derive something new from it. Whether the results sound appealing ot us or not is a different question, but it doesn’t allow you to argue that the process as such is inherently wrong.

    Regarding your complaint about “dnevnik” implying that it’s updated daily — I don’t think there’s much to be gained by being such a slave to etymology. I mean, what the heck, we still call a pencil “svincnik” even though it contains graphite instead of lead. I’m sure many people who keep a paper diary don’t write something every single day either, and yet they happily go on using the word “dnevnik” (or “diary” in English, which is also from the Latin word for “day”).

    “The problem is that the Slovene language has fallen behind on the subject of internet and computers. We thought (as mentioned in previous post) that we had time and that the whole thing would cool off.” I beg your pardon? I see absolutely no sense in this claim. I’m not entirely sure what do you refer to by “the whole thing would cool off”, but I certainly don’t know of anybody who seriously got away with proposing things of that sort. Nor do I have the impression that the Slovenian language has fallen behind on these subjects. On the contrary, I would say that it is keeping up quite nicely, as far as it is necessary. Of course, as long as a concept is so obscure as to be of interest to only a handful of experts or enthusiasts, they will probably use the English term for it; but if it becomes sufficiently widely known and of interest to the general public, it will probably get domesticated — sometimes it will be adopted with nothing more than small adjustments in spelling and pronunciation, but sometimes (and not so rarely) a Slovenian equivalent will be found or made. Many Slovenian equivalents are being proposed, and as always with these things, most of them are soon forgotten, but a few find favour with usage, that ultimate arbiter of language, and by the by become perfectly decent and ordinary everyday words. Years ago, when David Pahor and his ilk writing in the Monitor magazine proposed the word “splet” for the web, everyone laughed (me too); and yet, who would have thought, the word stuck and is now a widely used standard word (even I sometimes use it now). On the other hand, many of their other proposals came to nothing. The same thing will happen to blog; perhaps the original will be retained, or perhaps some Slovenian neologism will become popular enough and supplant the original. In my opinion, such processes are precisely what a language keeping up with a field is all about. A language cannot help but keep up with a field as soon as a sufficiently large number of its users are interested in that field — whether through borrowing, or through coinage, or through a combination of the two, but keep up with the field it will, there’s no avoiding it.

    In fact, I’m inclined to think that insofar as anything is wrong with the Slovenian language, it’s the bashfulness of its users when it comes to forming new words. In many languages, such as English, whenever somebody coins a new word, or grafts a new meaning on to an existing word, it tends to sound cool to everyone; but in Slovenian, such innovations invariably seem silly to almost everyone (myself included). I think that’s regretable and not at all helpful in the long run. We should stop being the close-minded spelling/grammar nazis that we so often are, and we should learn once again how to discover joy in playing and tinkering with our language.

  3. ill-advised

    Re: Klemenov komentar.

    Jaz sem načeloma pristaš tega, naj o jeziku odloča predvsem raba. To, ali je bil “blog” med slovenskimi literati/slovenisti/humanisti sprejet as-is ali ne, se mi ne zdi prav hudo relevantno; bolj me zanima, kaj uporablja večina ljudi, ki ima dejansko kaj opraviti z blogi, torej da jih ali pišejo ali vsaj berejo ali pa da vsaj vedo, kaj blogi sploh so. Vem, da so imeli slovenisti na slovlitu kratko debato o slovenskem prevodu besede blog; s tem sicer ni nič narobe oz. sem celo vesel, da se jim da razmišljati tudi o takšnih vprašanjih; ne vem pa, zakaj bi se moral kaj posebej ozirati na tisto njihovo debato. Tam so predlagali razni ljudje kup izrazov, ki se mi povečini zdijo posiljeni in mi ni prav nič do tega, da bi katerega od njih uporabljal. Na splošno mi ni všeč, ko vidim, da za precejšnjim delom tiste razprave tiči nekako takšno razmišljanje: ko se pojavi nek nov koncept, naj se kup modrih ljudi razsede okoli tabornega ognja in si začne izmišljevati prevode tujega izraza za ta koncept; prebrskajo naj kakšno zaprašeno staro skrinjo kje na podstrešju, najdejo v njej nekaj narečnih besed, odsekajo tej roko, oni nogo, staknejo vse skupaj — pa je novi izraz nared! Nikogar od zbranih pa seveda ne moti, da je že na prvi pogled očitno, da se bodo takšnemu novemu spaku vsi drugi uporabniki našega jezika zgolj od srca nasmejali in ga potem še dolgo navajali kot primer tega, kako si je nujno potrebno prizadevati, da bi imeli jezikoslovci čim manj vpliva na jezikoslovna vprašanja.

    Kar se mene tiče, ne vidim prave potrebe po izmišljevanju raznih hecnih in za lase privlečenih izrazov za vsako ceno, da se le izognemo besedi “blog”. Po mojem je večina slovensko govorečih ljudi, ki imajo kaj opraviti z blogi, z besedo “blog” čisto zadovoljna in ne čuti kakšne goreče želje po tem, da bi jo zamenjali s kakšno domačo skovanko. Če se bo našel dovolj pri roki kakšen kolikor toliko nevtralen izraz, se bo mogoče uveljavil; če se bo namesto tega obdržal kar “blog”, pa me tudi ne bo preveč motilo. Tisti, ki nočejo reči “blog”, bi po mojem naredili še najpametneje, če bi uporabili kakšno že obstoječo besedo, na primer dnevnik, in se ne obremenjevali preveč s tem, ali je to zdaj spletni dnevnik ali ne; kot sem že omenil v svojem zgornjem komentarju, to po mojem ponavadi niti ni pomembno, pa tudi če je, je razvidno iz konteksta.

    Glede tega, da intelektualcem (in/ali kvaziintelektualcem) ne bi smelo biti vseeno, da se v slovensko podzavest in publicistiko vriva takšna gnusna tujka, kot je “blog” (si že tečem spirat usta, seveda ne z milom, kajti to je najbrž iz uvoza, pač pa s pristnim domačim bukovim pepelom), pa moram reči, da sem o tem že dostikrat razmišljal, pa se nikakor ne morem dokopati do kakšnega doslednega in utemeljenega prepričanja o tej stvari. Po eni strani si nekako neformalno in podzavestno želim, da bi bile v našem jeziku prisotne same 100% etnično čiste besede, takšne, ki zmorejo izkazovati svoje neomadeževano domače poreklo vsaj tja do časov starih Slovanov, tistih pravih s kosmatimi ušesi in v medvedjih kožuhih. Po drugi strani pa, ko se vprašam, s čim naj bi utemeljil to svojo preferenco, se ne morem domisliti nobenega tehtnega razloga — vsaj ne takšnega, s katerim bi si potem upal iti pred druge ljudi in od njih zahtevati, naj se zaradi te moje preference tudi oni izogibajo tujkam. Mogoče še najbolj v oči bijoč primer jezika, ki si je že od pamtiveka izposojal besede vsepovsod, kjer jih je mogel kaj dobiti, je angleščina, in večkrat sem se trudil, da bi našel kakšen primer, ki bi dokazoval, da je to obilno izposojanje tujih besed angleščini kakorkoli škodovalo, pa nisem našel ničesar pametnega. Tako da, čeprav imam načeloma še vedno rad etnično čiste besede, si vendarle ne upam nergati drugim ljudem, naj se temu prilagajajo tudi oni. Zato mi tudi ni očitno, da gre že kar takoj za zaničevalski odnos do jezika, če si človek ne želi, da bi po vsej sili kovali domače besede, namesto da si kdaj pa kdaj izposodimo kakšno tujo. Mogoče so pa ti ljudje mnenja, da se jezik tudi s tem krepi in bogati; da ni tujka, ko si jo enkrat sposodimo in malo udomačimo in ko se na široko uveljavi v naši rabi, nič manj naša kot tiste besede, ki so jih naši predniki prinesli s seboj izza Karpatov (oz. od koderkoli so že pač prišli); in ni mi očitno, da se ti ljudje motijo.

  4. ill-advised

    P.S. Na krajše povedano, zdi se mi, da me je pri Klemenovem komentarju motila predvsem implikacija (je pa seveda načeloma čisto mogoče, da je v resnici ni tam in sem si jo zgolj jaz v navalu žolča in hude krvi domišljal), da moramo zato, ker si je tam nekje januarja peščica slovenistov izmenjala dva ali tri maile na to temo, vsi ostali za trenutek odložiti delo in vzeti v obzir njihove modre sklepe in se zdaj po njih ravnati pri naši rabi oz. še raje nerabi besede “blog”.

  5. Dr. Kruegel

    Ko smo ze pri prevodih… ena stvar, ki sigurno gre vsakomur na bruhanje, ce jo sploh opazi… pojavili so se oglasni panoji, kjer se omenja GLOS v STIKU. Gre za neko sminko ali mazilo za ustnice a la labelo stuff. Glos v stiku???????????? WTF (oz. KZV po slovensko)?

  6. ill-advised

    O kozmetiki sicer nimam pojma, ampak ugibam, da “glos v stiku” mogoče pomeni “gloss” (= [nekaj, kar ti da] sijaj) v obliki paličice (=stick)? Izraz pa v vsakem primeru zveni zelo bizarno. Vsekakor z njim za slovenščino niso naredili nič kaj dosti več, kot če bi ostali kar pri izvirnem angleškem izrazu (kakršenkoli ta že pač je — najbrž “gloss stick”?).


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