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Thread: Russian has become the second most used language on the internet

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    Завсегдатай Basil77's Avatar
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    Russian has become the second most used language on the internet

    Please, correct my mistakes, except for the cases I misspell something on purpose!

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    Завсегдатай Throbert McGee's Avatar
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    From the link:
    is seems very likely that Russian will stay at rank #2 for a while. Chinese would of course be the logical candidate to move up that far, but we don't see that yet in the statistics.
    I was surprised that Chinese was slightly ahead of Japanese. I know that China has a much larger population, but I would assume that a far larger percentage of Japan's population has Internet access compared with China.

    I wonder if technical issues related to the encoding of Chinese and Japanese иероглифы (анг. "characters") is part of the reason? According to wikipedia, Japan has been more resistant than China to adopting the Unicode standard as a replacement for older formats. So if most Chinese-language websites are Unicode-compliant, but many Japanese sites are not, that could partly explain why Japanese is behind Chinese in web statistics.

    Another possible reason: As far as I know, in countries like the US and Canada, Chinese-speaking immigrants significantly outnumber Japanese-speaking immigrants. So the presence of bilingual Anglo-Chinese communities in North America (and the UK, Australia, NZ) would tend to increase the number of Chinese-language sites on the web.

    P.S. Also interesting that Hindi/Urdu and related languages were not represented, despite India's huge population. I can only assume that Indians with Internet access often prefer to use English.

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    Завсегдатай Throbert McGee's Avatar
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    One thing the article didn't discuss in detail: Without a doubt, English is used by non-native-speakers around the globe as a lingua franca, and this helps explain why more than half of all websites are in English.

    On the other hand, I would assume that German (now in third place) is used primarily by native German-speakers, and that native speakers of Dutch and Swedish and Czech (for example) are more likely to prefer English as their lingua franca instead of German.

    So I'm curious about the percentage of users on the Russian-language internet who are using Russian as a second language or lingua franca, even though Russian is not their native language. (I'm not counting people like myself who can speak Russian with "clumsy fluency" as a foreign language -- I'm only talking about people who regularly use Russian as an acquired second language.)

    I mean to say, how many Uzbek and Kazakh users would prefer to read websites in Uzbek or Kazakh if such sites were widely available -- and how many would prefer to read websites in Russian because they don't speak/read Uzbek or Kazakh sufficiently well?
    Говорит Бегемот: "Dear citizens of MR -- please correct my Russian mistakes!"

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    Завсегдатай Basil77's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Throbert McGee View Post
    So I'm curious about the percentage of users on the Russian-language internet who are using Russian as a second language or lingua franca, even though Russian is not their native language. (I'm not counting people like myself who can speak Russian with "clumsy fluency" as a foreign language -- I'm only talking about people who regularly use Russian as an acquired second language.)

    I mean to say, how many Uzbek and Kazakh users would prefer to read websites in Uzbek or Kazakh if such sites were widely available -- and how many would prefer to read websites in Russian because they don't speak/read Uzbek or Kazakh sufficiently well?
    Have you read the article? The nubmers from the link are clearly for internet users, not for the regular life:

    Russian is also the most used language in several countries that belonged to the Soviet Union: 79.0% in Ukraine, 86.9% in Belarus, 84.0% in Kazakhstan, 79.6% in Uzbekistan, 75.9% in Kyrgyzstan and 81.8% in Tajikistan.
    Please, correct my mistakes, except for the cases I misspell something on purpose!

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    Завсегдатай it-ogo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Throbert McGee View Post

    I was surprised that Chinese was slightly ahead of Japanese. I know that China has a much larger population, but I would assume that a far larger percentage of Japan's population has Internet access compared with China.

    I wonder if technical issues related to the encoding of Chinese and Japanese иероглифы (анг. "characters") is part of the reason? According to wikipedia, Japan has been more resistant than China to adopting the Unicode standard as a replacement for older formats. So if most Chinese-language websites are Unicode-compliant, but many Japanese sites are not, that could partly explain why Japanese is behind Chinese in web statistics.

    Another possible reason: As far as I know, in countries like the US and Canada, Chinese-speaking immigrants significantly outnumber Japanese-speaking immigrants. So the presence of bilingual Anglo-Chinese communities in North America (and the UK, Australia, NZ) would tend to increase the number of Chinese-language sites on the web.
    Here are two more possible explanations which are to be checked.
    1. Japanese much better speak English than Chinese and some parts of their activity (professional) goes in English.
    2. Japanese language uses several writing systems, one of them (kanji) is actually the same as Chinese one. Maybe it is recognized as Chinese by automatics? If it is so, all Japanese sites also counted as Chinese.

    So I'm curious about the percentage of users on the Russian-language internet who are using Russian as a second language or lingua franca, even though Russian is not their native language.
    Well, you can easily meet people from xUSSR countries in internet speaking Russian, but mainly they speak Russian at native level.
    "Россия для русских" - это неправильно. Остальные-то чем лучше?

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