[Spellyans] Shall we vote on diacritics just now?

Eddie Climo eddie_climo at yahoo.co.uk
Mon Jan 31 21:43:07 GMT 2011

On 2011 Gen 31, at 21:03, Michael Everson wrote:

> On 31 Jan 2011, at 19:08, Eddie Climo wrote:
>> Are we yet ready, fellow Spellyansoryon, to consider a consensual rewording of  the KS formal spec vis à vis the precise rôle recommened by us for diacritical signs in KS? Perhaps we need more time to discuss the issue. Perhaps not.
>> I call for a vote; does anyone second the motion that we vote on the following form of words? 
>>> Spellyans believes that diacritics in KS be highly recommended in lexicographic/reference/didactic material, but be optional in other writings, at the discretion of the writer/publisher/teacher.
> I don't think so. In the first place I oppose this attempt to railroad the discussion into a vote with such haste. (In the second I find your proposed wording to be unacceptable.)
The wording is a proposal, not a fait accompli. If you don't like that draft wording, you're at liberty to suggest an alternative, of course. You'll notice the words I used for sure, since you just quoted them in your reply; I said:

> Perhaps we need more time to discuss the issue. Perhaps not.
'Railroading'? When I ask whether we might be ready to vote now, or whether we might not be? Balderdash! Instead, I think you're showing your habitual aversion to dissent.

> Yesterday I gave a number of good reasons for the opposition yesterday. I note that you did not respond to any particular of the linguistic argument; you merely said that you did not agree with it holus bolus. (The same sort of non-response was given by Bailey and friends to Towards Authentic Cornish.) Gainsaying is not argument. 
Bailey Shmailey! I've listened to your arguments ad nauseam for a long time. You don't listen to counter arguments, so I decline to waste my time by giving them. No matter. The emerging consensus on Spellyans seems to be against your hard-line approach to diacritics in KS. If a vote is premature just now, then we can just carry on chewing over this matter. But the question won't go away, despite all your prolix persiflage!

Perhaps it's time, and long past time, for you to concede gracefully.

> KS orthography is what it is.
The  KS orthography will be whatever the consensus on Spellyans says it will be; as yet, it is no more than a proposal. It has never been put to a vote on this forum, and thus has no mandate and has not been ratified. But it is not your private fief, as far as I'm aware. WE as a group will decide what KS orthography is, not ME or YOU or NICHOLAS or any other individual.

If you and Nicholas chooose to publish in an unratified, draft KS orthography, that's entirely your own affair—how could be otherwise in a democracy. But, as I said earlier, you are NOT free to decide unilaterally what KS is; you have no mandate from this group to make such pronouncements. And if it so happened that the final, ratified, mandated, consensual version of KS is not the same as what you've chosen to publish so many books in—hard luck!

> It has been designed to be an accurate unambiguous orthography.
Irrelevant. The question is whether or not the members of this group will ratify it in it present proposed form. I see no majority willing to do so, not so far at least.

> As such it does not differ from the orthography of French or Irish or Hungarian.
Irrelevant. Must it be restated yet again? This is Cornish—not Irish, or Icelandic, or Babylonian cuneiform, or any other irrelevant system of writing. Cornish is (if you'll pardon the tautology) Cornish!

> If a person cannot or will not follow the orthography because of technical or volitional reasons, then all this implies is that the person cannot or will not follow the orthography. 
Is a tautology all you can manage? Consider this instead: if a person cannot or will not follow the orthography as Michael and Nicholas want it to be, then the orthography needs to be modified in order to reflect the consensus of Spellyans members.

> KS would not be accurate or unambiguous if its recommendation were to be watered down.
Piffle! It would be as accurate and unambiguous as each writer and teacher and publisher of KS decided that it needed to be. There is no reason whatsoever that KS is obliged to manifest the highest possible degree of accuracy and unambiguousness in every single  context of usage.

> I can see no linguistic advantage to wavering on the recommendation that good practice is to use diacritical marks, and indeed I can see no political advantage to doing so in advance of any possible discussion with others in two years' time. 
Your inability to see these things is irrelevant; your lack of perceptiveness is entirely your own affair. I believe, althoug I may be mistaken, that most Spellyansoryon CAN see these matters  better than you can, since they've expressed their views to that effect in the last couple of days.

Eddie Climo

> =====
> Six Cornish letters can take diacritical marks to make pronunciation clear. 
> â, à, ê, è, ë, î, ô, ò, û, ù, ÿ
> These diacritical marks are important and should be learned as a proper part of the words which have them. If you write them regularly, they will help you to pronounce words more correctly, and they will help others to read what you write more easily. 
> =====
> That is a description of good practice. We mandate good practice in KS, and have since its inception. If one wishes to derogate from that practice, then one is derogating. Please don't ask us to *recommend* inaccuracy or ambiguity. We must aim high. 
> Michael Everson * http://www.evertype.com/
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