SOS – Save our spelling!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poland marked International Mother Language day by launching a campaign in defence of the Polish language.

The Polish Language Council (Rada Języka Polskiego) believes that spelling – particularly of those words requiring characters unique to the Polish language – is under threat from technological advances which make it simpler to use the Roman alphabet when typing.

It is common for younger Poles to skip ą, ć, ę, ł, ń, ó, ś, ź and ż when sending emails or text messages, in favour of a, c, e, l, n, o, s, and z. but in omitting the Polish diacritics, the meaning and pronunciation of words can change.
Professor Jerzy Bralczyk, of Warsaw university, said: “Today, the Polish language is threatened by the tendency to avoid its characteristic letters. The less we use diacritical marks in text messages, the more likely they are to vanish altogether. That would mean an impoverishment of the language and of our life. I would be sorry.”

Polish media drove home the message, by playing songs and giving news broadcasts with the words changed to ignore Polish characters – thus altering the pronunciation.

So just how do you get those ‘special characters’ on a keyboard when typing Polish words? The answer is surprisingly simple – just hold down the right ALT key as well as the Roman character. To get ź, use right ALT and x.

Picture: The Polish alphabet. Note that Q, V and X are generally used only in foreign words and are not considered part of Polish.

Normal
0

21

false
false
false

PL
X-NONE
X-NONE

MicrosoftInternetExplorer4

/* Style Definitions */
table.MsoNormalTable
{mso-style-name:”Table Normal”;
mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0;
mso-tstyle-colband-size:0;
mso-style-noshow:yes;
mso-style-priority:99;
mso-style-qformat:yes;
mso-style-parent:””;
mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt;
mso-para-margin-top:0cm;
mso-para-margin-right:0cm;
mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt;
mso-para-margin-left:0cm;
line-height:115%;
mso-pagination:widow-orphan;
font-size:11.0pt;
font-family:”Calibri”,”sans-serif”;
mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri;
mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri;
mso-hansi-theme-font:minor-latin;
mso-fareast-language:EN-US;}

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2 thoughts on “SOS – Save our spelling!

  1. “So just how do you get those ‘special characters’ on a keyboard when typing Polish words? The answer is surprisingly simple – just hold down the right ALT key as well as the Roman character. To get ź, use right ALT and x.”

    Close. On a Windows 7 PC and below, you must switch to the Polish Pro(grammers) language pack. Before you do that, you need to install it if it’s not. For Windows 7, go to Control Panel>Clock, Language and Region>Change keyboards and other input methods>When the box opens, click on Keyboards and Languages tab>Click on Change Keyboards>click ADD>find “Polish”>click on the + sign to expand it, then on the + in front of “Keyboard” then tick the box in front of Polish Programmers (note, don’t check any others)>When it returns to the box with the keyboards you’ve added, check to make sure it’s there, then click OK

    After you do that, you should be able to switch between keyboards by simply changing the keyboard icon in your taskbar from EN (or whatever) to PL. Most English can be typed using Polish Programmers (Polish Pro). A few odd characters need the EN tab, but otherwise you can stay in PL (pro).

    Hope that helps.

    p/s it’s easier on a mac

  2. Pingback: Sports Minister visits Zielona Góra congress | Inside-Poland.com

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