Why don't you come to your senses?
December 11, 2006 2:20 PM   Subscribe

Never mind that Shatner thing, YouTube is proving that Esperanto is much hipper now. (previously)
posted by hovercraft (7 comments total)
Esperanto is too clunky and lacking in subtle expression to catch on in any meaningful way. As an aside, I liked the way the movie Code 46 gave popular languages the salad treatment.

Also, is there some kind of plugin to generate youtube posts by typing in a theme and then outputting the results into some kind of autotext? I don't see it as any of my options on the posting page.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:27 PM on December 11, 2006

He's all set for Riverworld.
posted by GavinR at 2:28 PM on December 11, 2006

yeah, that's hip alright
posted by parmanparman at 3:06 PM on December 11, 2006

Incubus is actually a pretty good flick.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 3:29 PM on December 11, 2006

I watched all two minutes of the first link, partly out of curiosity to hear Esperanto spoken (clunkily, but no worse than NPR English, I guess), but mainly in hopes that the rat would shit on his shirt. No such luck.

Here's a guy who was shot for Esperanto.
posted by languagehat at 3:54 PM on December 11, 2006

Do ya think he knows he has a rat on him?
posted by LordSludge at 8:48 PM on December 11, 2006

I will confess that when I was about 13 I made an attempt to learn Esperanto. Blame Harry Harrison, I was a fan of his Stainless Steel Rat books and every one of them included at least one plug for Esperanto.

In all honesty, the idea of a synthetic language as a universal second language is pretty nifty, it'd sidestep the problem that a natural language used as a universal second language could be seen as unfair. However, I think its pretty well established at this point that people just don't really bother with synthetic languages, the Esperantists have been trying for over a hundred years and its never gotten anywhere.

But right now English is pretty much the universal second language (or trade language, or whatever you want to call it), and since its a natural language that means there's a degree of resentment and cultural muscle flexing.

Also, as an aside, to those who claim that Esperanto is a fantastically simple language to learn, I would guess that it'd be roughly as difficult as Spanish or any of the other European languages for a native speaker of Japanese to learn. Its sentence structure and essential grammar is mostly Indo-European-like, additionally its vocabulary (like that of most European languages) involves sound combinations which are difficult for the Japanese to master. A few of my Japanese classmates have commented that the most annoying and difficult part of learning English is the theta sound and the fact that we use multiple consinants between vowls. The whole "r" and "l" thing isn't that much of a big deal, or so they say.
posted by sotonohito at 9:21 PM on December 11, 2006

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