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How Apple, at its core, is like the French


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September 25, 2006

How Apple, at its core, is like the French

Stephen Baker

So Apple wants us to stop calling our audio files podcasts--or at least is pressing commercial companies to stop using the word. What should we call it instead? Engadget offers suggestions.

The French, for very different reasons, attempt to cleanse their language of words like podcast. It's less an issue of copyrights than a (futile) effort to wall off the incursion of English into the language. One alternative that has popped up in France (and Quebec) is a word that for most Anglos is nearly unpronounceable: baladodiffusion.

Sure, it's six syllables instead of two. And that U after the double F is torture for Anglos to pronounce correctly. But with a few hundred million in TV and Internet ads, the cool "Apple Guy" could eventually teach it to us--and maybe help us out with the subjunctive while he's at it. Just to drive home the point, Apple could link the clueless Microsoft guy to "podcasts."

09:45 AM

podcasting

Stephen...You might find this explanation useful/interesting...

http://blogs.zdnet.com/ip-telephony/?p=1252

Posted by: PXLated at September 25, 2006 11:12 AM

The word Baladodiffusion have been approved by the "french language commission in Quebec" so it is an officially recognized term here and it is not widely used in France (in fact, the French language commission in France do not recognise this word) so they mainly use Podcasting.

It came from the word "Baladeur" which was the term used for a "walkman" for over 20 years and can be translated by stroller. So Baladodiffusion is strollcasting. It is a long word, but we sometimes just say Balado.

Due to Quebec's official language and geographic situation, Quebec's goverment has always been at the avant-garde in finding french equivalent to english words in technology, and is way ahead of French government. There are also words for : Shareware (Gratuiciel), Plugin (Plugiciel), Email (Courriel) and others.

My podcast, Le Quebec en Baladodiffusion, talks about Quebec and podcasting in Quebec. I make reviews of podcasts from here, interview people on Quebec's tech scene, play podsafe music and discuss about technology and how it affects our lifes.

Posted by: Sylvain Grand Maison at October 4, 2006 08:41 AM

Living in Quebec, learning French, I find it odd that the French need a word for everything. If They invent it we call it by its name, but when anyone else invents it, they, the French, are compelled to complicate things by renaming them! I certainly understand the need to protect one's language and culture but... let's call a spade a shovel.

Posted by: Gerard Leckey at February 7, 2007 08:16 AM


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