хомяк

English translation: hamster

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
Russian term or phrase:хомяк
English translation:hamster
Entered by: Susan Welsh

00:11 May 16, 2012
Russian to English translations [PRO]
Slang
Russian term or phrase: хомяк
Те, кто на митинги не ходит и осуждает, искренне не понимают: чего этим хомякам не хватает?

Referring to the Moscow protests. Hamsters? What is the nuance of meaning here that would allow it to be translated into English meaningfully?
Susan Welsh
United States
Local time: 03:07
hamster
Explanation:
I think "hamsters" is the way to go. Everybody writing about the demos in English, from the Moscow Times to Esquire mag, is translating the nickname literally. It's been used to dismiss the demonstrators, then applied to them by themselves: Navalny called himself an Internet hamster, people showed up on the street wearing hamster suits. I don't know when it started - has Michele Berdy written a column about this yet? Just as I don't know where "office plankton" came from. Myself, I thought "Internet hamsters" combined a derogatory "running around in circles" image for people who live online, with overtones of "gnawing from within". Or, was it burrowing from within? Probably I have an over-active imagination.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr (2012-05-16 01:14:13 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Yep, I knew Michele would not have missed that one! The use of "хомяк" in an Internet context comes from playing with English "home" as in "home page"!!

"Russians apparently didn’t like saying хом (home — a web site’s home page), so they wittily transformed хом into a similar and familiar Russian word: хомяк (hamster). This is not to be confused with English computer slang, in which the hamster is a wireless (tailless) mouse."
http://news.windowstorussia.com/the-word’s-worth-the-really-...

Her column is from last summer, and notice that she only has the IT usage of хомяк, not its transformation into a nickname for protesters who emerged from the blogosphere.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr (2012-05-16 01:15:23 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

In other words, that's _very_ recent.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 10 hrs (2012-05-16 10:24:45 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Susan, do the search in Yandex Картинки and ask it for "хомячки с Болотного" or "хомячки Навального", and, voila!
http://cuamckuykot.ru/uploads//2012/02/x_c1070ad8.jpg

Here, picketing the U.S. Embassy:
http://cdn04.dayviews.com/bloglovin/5926727491429e233014384c...
Selected response from:

Rachel Douglas
United States
Local time: 03:07
Grading comment
The pictures on those sites are worth a thousand words. Admittedly this doesn't mean anything much in English, but a new word usage has just been coined. Thanks!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
4 +4hamster
Rachel Douglas
3 +1homebodies / coach potatoes
Michael Korovkin
3net+
Ocean122
3gopher
Andrew Vdovin
3sheeple
Kiwiland Bear
3lemming
Mikhail Kropotov


Discussion entries: 1





  

Answers


5 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
lemming


Explanation:
This slang term a recent development so I don't know of any widespread equivalent, much less an official translation. But 'lemming' may be one way to put it.

Mikhail Kropotov
Russian Federation
Local time: 11:07
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 161
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
sheeple


Explanation:
That's what it means to me at least. Or just "sheep" as applied to people.

I believe the word first appeared and gained traction as an opposite to "predator" types which have been variously called weasels, wolves, jackals...none of which became widely used or accepted but "хомяки" remained.

But of course, if "hamsters" are already used by mainstream media as accepted translation then I guess we don't have much choice in the matter now.

Kiwiland Bear
New Zealand
Local time: 21:07
Works in field
Native speaker of: Russian
PRO pts in category: 4
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2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
gopher


Explanation:
I think this word has some additional slangy connotations which may do for your context.

Andrew Vdovin
Local time: 15:07
Works in field
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 5
Notes to answerer
Asker: The slang meaning of "gopher" is "go-fer," as in "go for," as in a flunky whose job (figuratively speaking) is to fetch coffee or run errands for the big guys.

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5 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
homebodies / coach potatoes


Explanation:
The Russians tell me, "хомяк" = “домашник“, тот, кто в-основном дома сидит. From the English "home". So, I wouldn't translate it as an animal but semantically.

Michael Korovkin
Italy
Local time: 09:07
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish, Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in category: 28

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Andrew Vdovin: А чего ж их тогда на демонстрации-то тянет?
3 hrs
  -> Вот именно этот вопрос в тексте и поднимается: и чего тогда лезут?

agree  stanna
12 hrs
  -> thanks directly from the coach!
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6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
net+


Explanation:
How about this one - netizen?
Or even this one - netard?

Ocean122
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

46 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +4
hamster


Explanation:
I think "hamsters" is the way to go. Everybody writing about the demos in English, from the Moscow Times to Esquire mag, is translating the nickname literally. It's been used to dismiss the demonstrators, then applied to them by themselves: Navalny called himself an Internet hamster, people showed up on the street wearing hamster suits. I don't know when it started - has Michele Berdy written a column about this yet? Just as I don't know where "office plankton" came from. Myself, I thought "Internet hamsters" combined a derogatory "running around in circles" image for people who live online, with overtones of "gnawing from within". Or, was it burrowing from within? Probably I have an over-active imagination.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr (2012-05-16 01:14:13 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Yep, I knew Michele would not have missed that one! The use of "хомяк" in an Internet context comes from playing with English "home" as in "home page"!!

"Russians apparently didn’t like saying хом (home — a web site’s home page), so they wittily transformed хом into a similar and familiar Russian word: хомяк (hamster). This is not to be confused with English computer slang, in which the hamster is a wireless (tailless) mouse."
http://news.windowstorussia.com/the-word’s-worth-the-really-...

Her column is from last summer, and notice that she only has the IT usage of хомяк, not its transformation into a nickname for protesters who emerged from the blogosphere.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr (2012-05-16 01:15:23 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

In other words, that's _very_ recent.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 10 hrs (2012-05-16 10:24:45 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Susan, do the search in Yandex Картинки and ask it for "хомячки с Болотного" or "хомячки Навального", and, voila!
http://cuamckuykot.ru/uploads//2012/02/x_c1070ad8.jpg

Here, picketing the U.S. Embassy:
http://cdn04.dayviews.com/bloglovin/5926727491429e233014384c...

Rachel Douglas
United States
Local time: 03:07
Native speaker of: English
PRO pts in category: 24
Grading comment
The pictures on those sites are worth a thousand words. Admittedly this doesn't mean anything much in English, but a new word usage has just been coined. Thanks!
Notes to answerer
Asker: Bingo, thanks Rachel. When I searched for photos of хомяки, all I found were cute little rodents -- nobody at a demo in a hamster suit. Google Images has its limits as a resource for translators!


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  MariyaN (X)
46 mins
  -> Thanks, Mariya.

agree  Alexandra Schneeuhr
4 hrs
  -> Thanks, Alexandra.

agree  svetlana cosquéric
5 hrs
  -> Thanks, Svetlana.

agree  Mikhail Korolev
22 hrs
  -> Thank you.
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