Friday, December 31, 2010

Englisch Verboten im Vaterland

German ministry cracks down on Anglicisms
(May crack down on Anglicans later)

By Ruppert Mayr, Deutsche Presse-Agentur

BERLIN — Germany's Transport Ministry has launched a crackdown on English-style words in the German language, handing out a list of more than 100 banned terms, it confirmed Wednesday.

Spokeswoman Sabine Mehwald confirmed that minister Peter Ramsauer, a conservative from the state of Bavaria, had appealed to his staff to preserve the German language, mainly protecting it from words of English origin. "There's no compulsion about it," she said.

In the latest revision of the list, staff members were told to stop writing "der laptop," and call the device "mobiler rechner," which means "mobile computer."

Staff members also were advised to always call a data projector a "datenprojektor" and to stop describing it with the faux English term "beamer," which is common in Germany and the Netherlands.

Ramsauer said later that he was less concerned about ordinary nouns which have no Germanic equivalent than he was about pretentious terms such as "inhouse meeting," which means the same as an everyday German expression "hausinterne besprechung."

But a motorists' organization, Auto Club Europa, called on the minister to instead focus on traffic law and reframe it in German instead of in "bureaucratese." ACE said parts of the road code used bureaucratic German that most Germans could not understand, so they just drive really fast instead.

Il y aura toujours d'un

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