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Vlaams en Nederlands in Proz
Thread poster: Macià Planas

Macià Planas
Local time: 20:22
English to Spanish
+ ...
Jan 20, 2008

Hallo aan allen

I am sorry to write this message in English here, but this thread concerns the Dutch/Flemish language, so I have no other choice...

I come from the Catalan forum. We have the problem of Proz dividing our language in two: Catalan and Valencian. This conflict is exclusively a political matter, as among cultural and scientific circles (such as universities and cultural associations) in Valencia, the official position is that they are one same language.

I have seen Proz lists Flemish and Dutch separately too. The fact is that I do not know if you agree or not on this separation. I have always thought they were one same language. Did you already discussed this matter before? Did you talk to Proz about it?

We are thinking of talking to Proz about this (regarding Catalan/Valencian), so if you agree on talking to Proz about this same matter (Dutch/Flemish), we could do it together, this way we could perhaps have more convicing power.


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Margreet Logmans  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 21:22
English to Dutch
+ ...
Dutch and Flemish Jan 21, 2008

Buenas dias Macià,

Dutch and Flemish are very distinguishable.
I do agree that they should be seen as two target languages. They are also related to two countries, Dutch for the Netherlands, Flemish for Belgium. Outsourcers don't seem to know the difference sometimes, but readers and translators certainly do!
If there is a separate forum for Flemish , I am not aware of it.

So, no support from me, I'm afraid....

But you write:
I come from the Catalan forum. We have the problem of ProZ.com dividing our language in two: Catalan and Valencian. This conflict is exclusively a political matter, as among cultural and scientific circles (such as universities and cultural associations) in Valencia, the official position is that they are one same language.

Is there any documentation on that? Would that not serve to change the mind of ProZ staff?

Good luck!
Margreet


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Bart B. Van Bockstaele  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 16:22
Dutch
+ ...
One and the same Jan 21, 2008

Margreet Logmans wrote:

Dutch and Flemish are very distinguishable.
I do agree that they should be seen as two target languages. They are also related to two countries, Dutch for the Netherlands, Flemish for Belgium. Outsourcers don't seem to know the difference sometimes, but readers and translators certainly do!
If there is a separate forum for Flemish , I am not aware of it.


This completely ignores that there is such a thing as the Taalunie, and that Dutch and Flemish are officially one and the same.

[Edited at 2008-01-21 07:39]


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Williamson  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 20:22
Flemish to English
+ ...
Differences Jan 21, 2008

Written Dutch and Flemish abide by the same grammatical rules, although nowadays the Dutch tend to bend these rules by writing compositions apart where these words should be one word.
Catalonian has a different grammar than Spanish. Spoken Dutch and Flemish sound different, but not that different as Catalonian and Spanish.
If the bidding system is not adapted I don't favour the separtion. Native language required: Dutch. You have introduced Flemish in the database. In that case you can forget to bid for a project with as target-language Dutch i.e. the same written language. Every year Flemish and Dutch compete in a "Groot Dictee der Nederlandse Taal" and AFIK, this dictee is evaluated according to the same grammatical rules.
After all,we are talking about translation, don't we?
Yes, i know, you can add a second language, but in my case that language should be French.
If the system offers the possibility to bid for a language (Dutch), its regional variant (Flemish) and another second language (French), I would second your proposal.
Why should a Flemish living in De Klinge(B) not be able to bid for an offer into Dutch whereas a Dutch person living in De Clinge (Nl) be able to bid for an offer into Dutch and not into Flemish? De Klinge(B)/De Clinge(NL) is a village on the borderline between Oost-Vlaanderen (B) /Zeeuws-Vlaanderen (NL)


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Evert DELOOF-SYS  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 21:22
Member
English to Dutch
+ ...
I fully second that Jan 21, 2008

Bart B. Van Bockstaele wrote:

Margreet Logmans wrote:

Dutch and Flemish are very distinguishable.
I do agree that they should be seen as two target languages. They are also related to two countries, Dutch for the Netherlands, Flemish for Belgium. Outsourcers don't seem to know the difference sometimes, but readers and translators certainly do!
If there is a separate forum for Flemish , I am not aware of it.


This completely ignores that there is such a thing as the Taalunie, and that Dutch and Flemish are officially one and the same.

[Edited at 2008-01-21 07:39]


As taken from Wikipedia, not really the most reliable source, but correct when it comes to the topic at hand:

Native speakers can quickly distinguish spoken and even written variants of standard Dutch used by Flemish speakers from variants that are common in the Netherlands.
The differences in vocabulary, however, are quite small.
The Woordenlijst der Nederlandse taal, often referred to by its cover colour as the green bible of the Dutch language and published under the leadership of Guido Geerts at Van Dale, also known for the Van Dale dictionary standard work, had shown 1,500 typically 'Flemish' words... in a list of 110,000 different Dutch language terms, statistically proving Flemish and Dutch to be a single language.
Thus in 1973 the Flemish Cultural Council, a predecessor of the Flemish Parliament, decided that in any law the term "Vlaamse taal", Flemish language, had to be replaced with "Nederlandse taal", Dutch language.
On 9 September 1980 the treaty regarding the Nederlandse Taalunie, Dutch-language Union between the Kingdoms of Belgium and of the Netherlands was signed.
...
Flemish ('Vlaams' in Dutch), as the general adjective relating to Flanders, can refer to the speech of the Flemings, inhabitants of Flanders, though for the Flemish Community, 'Algemeen Nederlands' (Common Dutch) is the official name of the standard language, hence in English referred to as standard Dutch.

I would be happy with Dutch (NL) and Dutch (B) to make it clear to outsourcers, but 'Flemish' simply doesn't do it for me.

And yes, we discussed this topic at length and I informed ProZ.com staff about it, several times. To no avail.


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Joeri Van Liefferinge  Identity Verified
Belgium
Local time: 21:22
Member (2002)
English to Dutch
+ ...
Cultural differences, but not different languages Jan 21, 2008

Bart B. Van Bockstaele wrote:

This completely ignores that there is such a thing as the Taalunie, and that Dutch and Flemish are officially one and the same.

Exactly...

Evert DELOOF-SYS wrote:

I would be happy with Dutch (NL) and Dutch (B) to make it clear to outsourcers, but 'Flemish' simply doesn't do it for me.

Seconded! I often have the impression that only translators from the Netherlands want to think of Dutch for Belgium as a different language, and often for the wrong reasons.

Margreet Logmans wrote:

Dutch and Flemish are very distinguishable.
I beg to disagree... That can be true for texts written by non-professionals, as there are more regional influences (e.g. the Dutch like using more English terms, the Flemish tend to use more gallicisms), but a text written by a professional linguist should not be too distinguishable. Although I regularly get annoyed when I see those gallicisms and non-standard language in texts from a professional Flemish translator I am asked to edit, I get as annoyed when I see, as Williamson said, Dutch translators writing compositions in two or three words.
So, in my opinion: the exact same language, with cultural differences (which is normal), and with different typical mistakes, but mistakes nonetheless. The Dutch make more mistakes with a English influence, the Flemish make more mistakes with a French influence.


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Maria Rosich Andreu  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 21:22
Member (2003)
Dutch to Spanish
+ ...
As a source language they are the same Jan 21, 2008

When I get a text in "het Nederlands" to translate, it doesn't matter to me whether it comes from Belgium or the Netherlands. I imagine there could be very specific slang differences in some texts, but I haven't encountered any yet that poses a real problem (in written texts at least). So, at least as a source language, I do not think it makes sense to have two different languages (yet it takes two slots in a Profile).

I agree that probably they should be marked somehow different as target languages, and the same should happen with Valencian/Catalan. However, I know this topic Dutch/Flemish has been discussed before. Why hasn't it been implemented? Was an official proposal ever made, or hasn't there been enough agreement?


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Henk Peelen  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 21:22
Member (2002)
German to Dutch
+ ...
LOL! Jan 21, 2008

Theoretically one language, in real terms at least two. Both Dutch and Flemish have, as ever, their own ways to make their use of the common language unacceptable for the other player. Especially in the Randstad area (roughly Rotterdam Amsterdam Utrecht triangle) of The Netherlands Dutch people like to accept English words and styles where it's everything but necessary (I mean words like computer and printer are widely accepted), including that stupid structureless piling up of nouns, in my not so humble opinion a clear example of trying to look progressive by mixing up fluency and lack of structure.
Flemish people tend to use original words that to Dutchmen look either archaic, French or German. They don't understand those words and, without any doubt, reject such texts.
The Dutch / Flemish word for "Dutch" is Nederlands, which at a glance makes clear the Belgian need for another name for it.

What's in a name? Much more than some people might think!

Photobucket


There's more behind a picture than the wall. Only at the border line you can read the "B" and "NL" in the right direction. It's no wonder Antwerpen and Rotterdam are the world's biggest harbours. For a long time sailing was the only way to go around the border line.
Funny thing is that globalisation and European unification stimulates cooperation, but stressing of local variants as well.





[Bijgewerkt op 2008-01-21 10:03]


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Margreet Logmans  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 21:22
English to Dutch
+ ...
Well, well... Jan 21, 2008

Joeri Van Liefferinge (King Darling Communications) wrote:

Bart B. Van Bockstaele wrote:

This completely ignores that there is such a thing as the Taalunie, and that Dutch and Flemish are officially one and the same.

Exactly...

Evert DELOOF-SYS wrote:

I would be happy with Dutch (NL) and Dutch (B) to make it clear to outsourcers, but 'Flemish' simply doesn't do it for me.

Seconded! I often have the impression that only translators from the Netherlands want to think of Dutch for Belgium as a different language, and often for the wrong reasons.

Margreet Logmans wrote:

Dutch and Flemish are very distinguishable.
I beg to disagree... That can be true for texts written by non-professionals, as there are more regional influences (e.g. the Dutch like using more English terms, the Flemish tend to use more gallicisms), but a text written by a professional linguist should not be too distinguishable. Although I regularly get annoyed when I see those gallicisms and non-standard language in texts from a professional Flemish translator I am asked to edit, I get as annoyed when I see, as Williamson said, Dutch translators writing compositions in two or three words.
So, in my opinion: the exact same language, with cultural differences (which is normal), and with different typical mistakes, but mistakes nonetheless. The Dutch make more mistakes with a English influence, the Flemish make more mistakes with a French influence.


I can easily give a list of words and expressions that are very different in the language spoken and written by Belgians or Dutch people. When reading a text, I can usually tell pretty soon whether the writer was from Belgium or the Netherlands.

The Taalunie-argument does not impress me as long as dictionaries add notes to indicate that some words and usages of words are 'Belgian' or 'Dutch'.

As a source language, I agree. I also agree that Dutch (B) and Dutch (NL) are better distinctions than Dutch and Flemish. But I cannot translate into Dutch (B).
An agency I work for refers to Dutch (NL) as 'Noord-Nederlands' (Dutch-North). I like that too.


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Bart B. Van Bockstaele  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 16:22
Dutch
+ ...
It should Jan 21, 2008

The Taalunie-argument does not impress me as long as dictionaries add notes to indicate that some words and usages of words are 'Belgian' or 'Dutch'.


It should, for it is this organization that determines what is Dutch and what isn't.


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Margreet Logmans  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 21:22
English to Dutch
+ ...
Descriptive, not determining Jan 21, 2008

Bart B. Van Bockstaele wrote:

The Taalunie-argument does not impress me as long as dictionaries add notes to indicate that some words and usages of words are 'Belgian' or 'Dutch'.


It should, for it is this organization that determines what is Dutch and what isn't.


Institutions like the Taalunie cannot determine a language; a language lives and evolves and therefore linguistic science is - for the greater part - descriptive.

I think the question 'what can you translate INTO' is much more important. Only last week I was working on a project that had clearly been worked on by a Belgian translator before me. I cannot translate into Belgian Dutch, and usually recognise a translation from a Belgian Dutch translator pretty soon.

To me, the difference is like British English and American English - you can't always clearly tell the nature of the differences, but they are certainly there. (Yes, I do realise spelling rules are the same in Belgian Dutch and Dutch Dutch).


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Macià Falgàs i Planas  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:22
English to Catalan
+ ...
I understand Jan 21, 2008

Margreet Logmans wrote:

Buenas dias Macià,

Dutch and Flemish are very distinguishable.
I do agree that they should be seen as two target languages. They are also related to two countries, Dutch for the Netherlands, Flemish for Belgium. Outsourcers don't seem to know the difference sometimes, but readers and translators certainly do!
If there is a separate forum for Flemish , I am not aware of it.

So, no support from me, I'm afraid....

But you write:
I come from the Catalan forum. We have the problem of ProZ.com dividing our language in two: Catalan and Valencian. This conflict is exclusively a political matter, as among cultural and scientific circles (such as universities and cultural associations) in Valencia, the official position is that they are one same language.

Is there any documentation on that? Would that not serve to change the mind of ProZ staff?

Good luck!
Margreet


I have read all your comments, and I understand them all. I see there are different opinions here. But I have also seen that you all agree on something: they should at least have the same name in order to keep being one same language. Thus, at least we could have something like this: "Dutch (Netherlands)" and "Dutch (Belgium)".

Does everybody agree that this would be better than the present denomination adopted in Proz?

I think this would be better because it would show the unity of the language.

[Edited at 2008-01-21 11:37]


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Macià Falgàs i Planas  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 20:22
English to Catalan
+ ...
See other languages Jan 21, 2008

Margreet Logmans wrote:

I think the question 'what can you translate INTO' is much more important. Only last week I was working on a project that had clearly been worked on by a Belgian translator before me. I cannot translate into Belgian Dutch, and usually recognise a translation from a Belgian Dutch translator pretty soon.

To me, the difference is like British English and American English - you can't always clearly tell the nature of the differences, but they are certainly there. (Yes, I do realise spelling rules are the same in Belgian Dutch and Dutch Dutch).


Actually, now that you mention BE and AE, they are under one same name: English. In fact, French, Spanish, Portuguese, English and German present many differences depending on the target country, and Proz does not show this difference on its list of languages. Why is it not possible to make the same for Dutch?

Margreet Logmans wrote:
As a source language, I agree. I also agree that Dutch (B) and Dutch (NL) are better distinctions than Dutch and Flemish. But I cannot translate into Dutch (B).


But all other languages solve this problem indicating in their jobs "this job is for Dutch (B)". And it actually works.


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Henk Peelen  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 21:22
Member (2002)
German to Dutch
+ ...
Don't beg to differ, I just do! Jan 21, 2008

Margreet Logmans wrote:

...
An agency I work for refers to Dutch (NL) as 'Noord-Nederlands' (Dutch-North). I like that too.




Just like Belgium, The Netherlands show quite a lot of diversity. The provinces Limburg, Utrecht, Zeeland and Groningen al have their own subculture. Same counts for Breda, Winterswijk, Leiden and Groningen.
I think "Noord-Nederlands" typically describes the three northern provinces. "Zuid-Nederlands" the three southern ones and so on, and so on.
Noord-Nederlands referring The Netherlands would imply Zuid-Nederlands referring ...
Belgium as a whole?
The Dutch speaking part including Brussels?
The Dutch speaking part without Brussels?

Apart from the lack of clarity it would stimulate the idea of Belgium being a part / colony of The Netherlands.

As to Dutch-with-language-code suffix, I think it doesn't work, becaus Dutch (X(X)) is neither of more difficult to use as adjective / adverb. Then it becomes Belgian Dutch and Dutch Dutch respectively Belgisch-Nederlands and Nederlands-Nederlands, the latter becoming what it is: Nederlands.

So, you can throw all theory into the garbage can. Nederlands "versus" Vlaams or Dutch "versus" Flemish, sounds awkward, but it works perfect.

Over time language behaves likes a river: it meanders and after some time retakes the straigth line, leaving nice lakes aside for swimming and surfing. But the main stream will retake the shortest way.

[Bijgewerkt op 2008-01-21 12:01]


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xxxSaifa
Local time: 21:22
German to French
+ ...
I do not understand why... Jan 21, 2008

... this distinction Flemish and Dutch is needed.

Regional variants and different gramatical constructions exist in many languages, German French, English, not forgeting Spanish, where every Spanish speaking country or region uses words which are not understood elsewhere... but nobody whould say "Ecuadorian" is another language than "Bolivian".

I agree with Margret that the most important question is "what can you translate INTO".
I could never translate a text into Canadian French or Swiss German for example, but of course I am able to understand those variants to a great extend.
I regularly translate Dutch texts into French or German, the come from the Netherlands and Belgium, for me it is the same language like the language people speak in Buenos Aires, Madrid or Caracas is the same for me too.


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