Latin Language Support: Et Tu, Facebook?
Article by George Norman
On 05 Oct 2009
Social networking site Facebook is quite popular with people all over the world and proof of that is the fact that more than 300 million accounts have been set up by now – at least that was the official number this September. One of the things that makes Facebook such a popular service is the extensive language support that it provides. No matter what part of the world you live in, you will surely find support for the language you speak. After all, the service is available in more than 70 languages.

The team behind Facebook has decided to add support for one more language, a dead language: Latin. Why would Facebook add support for a language that hardly anyone ever uses? Apart from my high school Latin teacher, who took all the fun out of studying this dead language – thank you very much. Getting back to the topic at hand, Facebook says that it provides Latin language support for the benefit of students. Perhaps if my old Latin teacher would have tried something fun like that then I would know a bit more Latin than I do right now – but I stray.

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Associate on the Facebook Communications Team, Elizabeth Linder, comments: “To students of Latin, the availability of the language on Facebook may be just what's needed to narrow the distance between themselves and the venerable language. After all, the experience of studying Latin can frequently seem somewhat far and away. Even the readings prescribed by Latin teachers have an air of detachment about them: Cicero and Demosthenes, Caesar and Virgil. While students of "living languages" practice on subtitled films and in conversation groups, on vacations and with exchange students, Latin scholars soak in rare living breaths of their studied language, satisfying themselves with the occasional legal phrase, nursery plant, benediction or school motto. Recognizing verb stems and identifying vocabulary roots just somehow aren't quite the same as ordering off a menu or asking for directions.”

If you would like to get started with Facebook, you can visit the official webpage
here.
If you would like to get started with Facebook Mobile, you can visit the two official sites
here and here.



Tags: Facebook, Social Networking, Latin, Language support
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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