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Re: [PATCH] locales: ay_PE: rename Aymara locale

I had intended to spare the list a long discourse on the topic of
indigenous language classification and South American politics, but I
know that "Trust Me" usually doesn't fly as an argument on this list.

Some history of note:

The One Laptop per Child project was widely adopted in Peru, placing
many cheap Linux-based computers in the hands of Peruvian children,
many of whom speak indigenous languages in the home but are served by
an education system that primarily uses Spanish as a
language-of-instruction.  Note that these laptops use the Sugar user
int4erface originally developed by OLPC, subsequently spun out and
maintained by the Sugar Labs project of which I have been the
Translation Team Coordinator since 2008.

In 2010 I spent a self-funded week in Lima, Peru to kickoff a
translation sprint with a group of indigenous language advocates held
at local hacker/maker space EscueLab.  Great progress was made and
continues to this day in Aymara and Quechua variants spoken in Peru as
well as newer efforts in other languages of the region like AwajÃn.
Decisions about glibc development (isocode selection) were made in
consultation with language activist organizations like

Note that an Aymara speaker would refer to their language as "Aru"

Quechua (Cusco-Collao)


At the time in 2010 there were many discussions about the inadequacy
of the SIL classifications of the Andean languages.  Care was taken in
selecting among the available ISO-codes in order to not block or
confuse future efforts by other indigenous language communities.  The
opinion of many native speakers is that the SIL classifications are
not sufficient to capture the richness of the linguistic diversity of
the Andean languages, there are considerable (and understandable)
sensitivities about being arbitrarily binning together languages that
native speakers would consider distinct.

There have multiple attempts to request modification of the iso-codes
made to SIL, but one must understand that SIL is a somewhat monolithic
organization that is not without a controversial history in South
America that has earned the antipathy of the indigenous languages
community and in fact has been thrown out of countries by the national
government (this is not an invitation to open a discussion about such
decisions, just an acknowledgement that SIL is not entirely
uncontroversial in relevant circles).

There were no existing Aymara or Quechua locales in CLDR at the time
or the developers of those locales would have been consulted as well.
A Spanish language comment was inserted into the glibc locale
welcoming future enqagement on this thorny topic with other language
stakeho0lders.  Now that Aymara and Quechua efforts are beginning in
other areas (e.g. CLDR, Mozilla, etc.) there are people that can be
contacted to further discuss these matters.  Please note that those
efforts are at a very early stage (and unreleased) with only a handful
of strings present in the Mozilla Aymara or Quechua projects (noting
that these are CLDR dependent and not glibc dependent).

Whereas, there are thousands of strings actively deployed in a
glibc-dependent project officially supported by the government of Peru
to bring indigenous language educational materials to many children in
some very poor communities.

 Betamax may have been a superior standard than VHS for videotaping,
but usage wins in the marketplace.

I implore the glibc project to leave the ayc_PE locale as it is for
now (literally for the sake of the children) and I pledge to continue
outreach efforts to the relevant communities (including the relatively
new Mozilla Nativo project) and the CLDR community to seek a more
perfect harmony on representing these languages digitally.  I have
skin in this game in a way that many of you do not, so please "Trust


On Mon, Feb 22, 2016 at 3:49 AM, Mike Frysinger <> wrote:
> On 20 Feb 2016 13:56, Paul Eggert wrote:
>> In this case, I expect that Andreas's point is that ISO 639-2 has the following
>> entries:
>> ayc - Southern (Altiplano) Aymara, sometimes called "Aymara" in English
>> ayr - Central Aymara -- Jaqaru and (now nearly extinct) Kawki
>> aym - inclusive code for both ayc and ayr
> ISO 639-2 doesn't have ayc or ayr, it only has aym (which is the same as ay):
> Aymara  Aymara  aymara  aym     ay
> aym     ay      Aymara  aymara  AymarÃ-Sprache
> ISO 639-3 has ayc & ayr, and i guess there it has reclassified aym/ay as a
> macrolanguage/parent to ayc & ayr rather than a language by itself:
> aym     aym     ay      Aymara  Macrolanguage   Living
> ayc                     Southern Aymara Individual      Living
> ayr                     Central Aymara  Individual      Living
> if we're looking at ISO 639-3, it also has a separate jqr:
> jqr                     Jaqaru  Individual      Living
> same goes for Ethnologue:
>> In contrast, ISO 639-1 has just "ay", corresponding to ISO 639-2's "aym". So
>> could you explain why is it technically correct to replace "ayc" with "ay"?
> as i mentioned elsewhere in this thread, i was only looking at ISO 639-2,
> and that only has ay.  but what really got me looking was the CLDR:
>  - ay - it uses this everywhere
>  - aym - it lists it as an alias to ay
>  - ayr - listed as deprecated
>  - ayc - not mentioned anywhere at all
> when we've named locales, we've largely used the ISO 639-1/2 two letter
> codes.  since those only have ay, and CLDR doesn't cover ayc at all, i'm
> lead to conclude the ayc should really be ay for our needs.
> looking at the wikipedia page indicates that Aymara as spoken across Peru
> and Bolivia implies they use many of the same words and the distinction
> is more along territory than linguistic lines:
> having it be ay_PE means we align w/the CLDR and details can be imported
> easily.  it also means we can set up ay_BO and be fairly correct -- or at
> the very least, it would be more correct than what ay/ayr users have now:
> english (or spanish) only.  it's easy to set up aliases for ayc_PE->ay_PE
> and ayr_BO->ay_BO so people can have sep translations when needed.
>> Some background: "ayc" has about 2 million speakers; "ayr" has about 700.
> that's not what the above Ethnologue links say.  they state:
>         ayc: 220 k
>         ayr: 2 mil
>         jqr: 700
>> "aym"
>> doesn't have an universally agreed-upon name in English; some call it "Aymaran",
>> some "Aymara", some "Jaqi", and some "Aru". There is opportunity for confusion
>> here, due to the multiple meanings of the English word "Aymara".
> the standards bodies seem to use Aymara pretty much everywhere so far.
> -mike

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