RE: Unicode top 100 (was RE: Unicode 3.0 press statements)

Date: Tue Jan 25 2000 - 11:33:08 EST

Liwal wrote:
>The 18 Million figure for Pashto Speakers is wrong.
>The actual Estimate is more then 45 millions, I do not know who
>are making the wrong calculations. I Sugget amendment to this

I apologize with everybody for that silly idea: please allow me to *RETREAT*
the proposal.

It is quite clear that this list is totally useless for the press statement
that Mark is writing, and that those numbers are not what we all would

But it is not The Ethnologue's fault. I should have made clearer that the
list considers only *spoken* languages, and only some of them: the most
common 100 ones.

What we call "Pashto", "Italian", "Chinese", etc. can also be seen as groups
of dialects; The Ethnologue considers these dialects separately and, of
course, only the most common of them are in the "top 100".

The result are those stupid numbers: the 18 millions for Pashto is just the
people speaking the *two* main dialects (those called "Northern Pashto" and
"Southern Pashto" by The Ethnologue). But there are many other Pashto
dialects! The Ethnologue lists all of them but, of course, they are not in
the "top 100".

Similarly, the 46 millions for Italian are just the people speaking *three*
main dialect: the population of Italy is about 60 millions, and there are
many Italian speakers in Switzerland and in other countries.

To do such a work seriously, one consider the *whole* Ethnologue's list --
but that is beyond my possibilities, both for lack of time and skills.

So please, forget that list!

Thanks anyway to all those who replied assigning "unknown" language to
writing systems: at least I have learned something.

_ Marco

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