Proposals for closing projects/Closure of Nahuatl Wikipedia

The result of the following proposal for closing a WMF project is to KEEP the project. Please, do not modify this page.

Discussion finished, result is KEEP. MF-Warburg(de) 11:34, 25 July 2007 (UTC)

I propose to close this discussion within 7 days from now, if there are no other opinions. MF-Warburg(de) 12:21, 18 July 2007 (UTC)


There are many reasons that Nahuatl deserves a Wikipedia. The various forms of Nahuatl have well over 1 million native speakers.
Hay muchas razones por que merece el nahuatl una propria Wikipedia. Las variedades del nahuatl tiene más de millón hablantes.

However, the current Nahuatl Wikipedia serves no purpose.
Sin embargo, la wikipedia nahuatl actual no sirve nada. He escrito lo siguiente en inglés para llegar a la audiencia más grande, si ud. necesita una traducción a español pidamelo antes de votar.

  1. There are over 1000 articles. Created in Classical Nahuatl by a handful of people whose self-ranking as speakers on Nahuatl is either nah-1 or nah-0, the majority of these articles are no more than two sentences long. Should we really allow such a huge Wiki written entirely by people who acknowledge (!!!) that they have such low abilities in the target language?
  2. The current Wiki is written in Classical Nahuatl. en:User:Maunus, a linguist specialising in Nahuatl has testified (see nah:User talk:Battroid) that Classical Nahuatl is almost completely impossible to understand for modern native speakers of Nahuatl. This means that it is only readable to people who have studied Classical Nahuatl in universities, which would likely amount to no more than several hundred people, all of whom are likely to be much more fluent in Spanish and may not even have fluency in Classical Nahuatl. It is like writing a Wikipedia in Phoenician -- almost nobody knows the Classical language (although over 1 million speak the modern language).
  3. In the current version of the ISO standard, nah is a language group rather than a single language. It is not the proper code for Classical Nahuatl. The proper code for the language variety used in this Wiki is nci. If this Wiki is kept, it does not belong at the current domain.
  4. The current contributors seem very poorly informed about Native issues. One user in particular, a 15-year-old going by the name of "Fluence", has stated that there are no Natives left in Mexico and that they have been assimilated by mestizaje (mixing by marriage), despite the fact that the recent Mexican national census showed that 8% of the population of that country is full-blooded Native. This user says that he likes the language because it shows what Nahua culture used to be 600 years ago which apparently admirable, while everything since then is apparently irrelevant.

Support deletionEdit

  1. I have nothing against the future creation of a Wikipedia in Classical Nahuatl at the domain nci:, but the majority of the articles would need to be written or proofread by people with at least nci-2 and hopefully nci-3 fluency in the language. As it stands, virtually all articles are written by nah:User:Fluence, nah:User:Ricardo gs and nah:User:Glenn, who claim levels of nah-1 or less. --Node ue 07:41, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
  2. Support delete. Nothing to say. We can see from the contents that it does not worth. -- Tomchiukc 14:04, 1 July 2007 (UTC)

Support moving to nci:Edit


  1. I think nahuatl should refer to classical nahuatl, as most of the literature under "nahuatl" refers to "classical nahuatl". I'd support creating a "modern nahuatl", but nahuatl as it is, should be classical. Now , that's about the deletion. Renaming nah: to nci: ? that's a minor point in my view so I'm neutral to it, as it wouldn't change much. drini [es:] [commons:] 02:29, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
    This ignores three important issues. 1) Majority of articles have been written by people with level of nah-1, namely Fluence and Ricardo_gs. Dozens if not hundreds of articles are only a single word long. 2) Classical Nahuatl has no native speakers, and very few people who are properly equipped to judge whether or not a sentence is written properly. Also, who will actually use this Wikipedia? 3) The code nah applies not to one language, but to over a dozen. The proper code for this Wiki is nci. --Node ue 07:21, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
    I'd go as far as saying that most english articles on en: have been written by en-2 (at most) users and then later polished. 2) Who will use the wikipedia? People who learnt classical nahuatl, as most of literature out there and learning materials deal with the classical version. 3) THe codename is a different issue, and I've stressed many times it's minor compared with the closing. drini [es:] [commons:] 17:58, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
    Also, there ARE native speakers, and they've stated they don't like the new way of writing proposed by goverment agencies, since those letters are not what they've been used to for a long time [1]. I've also pointed elsewhere [2] that learning materials available use the original writing system (they don't recognize w as a letter, but hu).
    But more important, spelling differences ar not enough reason to close a wiki. You cite an academic claiming that only academics will understand original nahuatl, while there are been reports (on major mexican newspapers) that native nahuatl speakers use that spelling system, and we have also a native speaker helping with that. So, factual evidence goes contrary to what that academic says (which is kind of ironic since your point is that no native speakers will understand it~, only academics) drini [es:] [commons:] 18:06, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
    Drini, this has nothing to do with the spelling system. Classical Nahuatl was used at the time of Spanish invasion. Actual spoken Nahuatl has changed very much since then. Words are different. Not just a spelling system. So stop trying to pretend this issue is about spelling, because it is not. Just because there is one native speaker who is helping you does not mean it is facile. For example, with my level of Spanish I can read the Occitan Wikipedia, but it is very difficult. And no, there are no native speakers of Classical Nahuatl. Native speakers speak modern dialects, which are related but different. And not just their spelling is different! --Node ue 22:46, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
    The fact Nahuatl, or Classical Nahuatl as Node ue says was used during the 16th century is not a reason to delete its Wikipedia or Huiquipedia. There is an Anglo-Saxon Wikipedia (ang:), a Latin Wikipedia (la:) and the Esperanto Wikipedia (eo:), this latter having one known Esperanto native speaker in the world, who doesn't contribute to that project. The first one is a dead language since no-one speaks Old English (therefore the term), in disuse by the 12th century. A Middle English Wikipedia is coming up as far as I know.
    SEP "created" modern alphabet to teach Nahuatl at their schools, around 1922. Do you have any idea of what SEP really is? Think of a Yugo or a Ford Pinto. No, SEP is worse. I never learnt at school how maybe the most Mexican language, Nahuatl had changed. So, if SEP wanted to change how Nahuatl is written, then they should have told us as Mexicans. Also, Akapochtli understands. He's a native speaker. Enough proof there
    About the code, it's the same for me. .--Fluence 19:13, 10 April 2007 (UTC-6)
    "Akapochtli" seems to know Classical Nahuatl, but Akapochtli also knows things about the language (word histories and the like) that indicates some deeper level of study than just having it as a native language.
    You never learnt how Nahuatl changed at school? Really? Wow. Big surprise there. You're wrong about Esperanto, there are actually between several hundred and several thousand native speakers (please see en:Esperanto), and there are users on that project who are native speakers (although I don't know what percentage). The Anglo-Saxon Wikipedia is different in that there are many more users working on it, and that was the case from the very beginning. There are many contributors of level ang-3. Most articles are written by people who studied the language for years, not someone like you or Ricardo_gs. Latin is a language of international scholarship, and the same goes for that Wikipedia as for the Anglo-Saxon one. You still have not answered the concern about quality. --Node ue 08:50, 11 April 2007 (UTC)
  2. Oppose. Per Drini. Cary Bass demandez 16:57, 12 April 2007 (UTC)
    Do you realise that there are over 1 million speakers of Nahuatl, and wouldn't you know it, almost none of them knows Classical Nahuatl? By saying you oppose "Per Drini", you are agreeing that modern indigenous people are unimportant and that we should put this Wikipedia in a classical language on a pedestal for nationalistic reasons despite the fact that it is being written by people with very poor linguistic knowledge in the area (acording to their own identifications). -- 19:50, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
  3. Strong oppose. Because, to start with, the proposal makes no sense: Closing just because some persons don't want it to be written in the traditional orthography?! Deleting it because if in Classical Nahuatl then "it serves no purpose"?! No purpose for whom? For the speakers of modern Nahua dialects/languages? And if so, so what? Just why on earth do these individuals assume it was meant for the use of those people? Also, because the proponent (user 'Node ue') is making this proposal out of the personal hatred he has repeatedly shown towards those who dare use the classical language on (supposedly, he claims, the traditional orthography is "colonial" and "oppressive" because it was based on the orthography of Spanish, which is such a ridiculous argument it merits no further comment). This user has a history of harassing and hurling personal attacks towards those who don't agree with his view on the matter (namecalling them "colonizers" and "oppressors", see for example here and here), and has clearly made this absurd proposal as a bad-faith attempt at retaliation. PLEASE stop turning this into a political quarrel with indigenist overtones. Wikipedia's purpose is not to further indigenist political agendas, like it or not. The primary meaning of "Nahuatl" is undoubtedly the classical language. This language has a literary tradition, was the language of the powerful Aztec empire, and as such is studied by Mesoamericanist scholars and people interested in the Aztecs all over the world. Classical Nahuatl is by far the most important of all the Nahua languages. A Wikipedia in this language is analogous to the Latin or Anglo-Saxon Wikipedias and all talk about it being "useful" or not to the modern indigenous peoples is completely irrelevant here. If the modern speakers of Nahuatl descendant languages want to have Wikipedias in their minority languages/dialects for their own use and for "promotion" of the current use of those modern varieties among their communities (for example, Wikipedias in Tetelcingo Nahuatl, in Isthmus-Mecayapan Nahuatl, etc.), then they should ask for subdomains for each individual variety, just like there is for example a Wikipedia in Alsatian apart from the main Wikipedia in German. There is not a single "modern Nahuatl", but several mutually unintelligible languages, which is another good reason why it would be inappropriate to choose one of them over the others to use in the main Nahuatl wiki instead of the classical language. Uaxuctum 17:50, 29 April 2007 (UTC)
    Perhaps you didn't read the proposal. This is not about orthography. Now, you have made clear your racist positions when you say that "Classical Nahuatl is by far the most important of all the Nahua languages". --Node ue 22:49, 29 April 2007 (UTC)
    Let me explain that a bit so it doesn't appear to outsiders as an unqualified personal attack. Besides the constant railing in the above message about "indigenist overtones" and "indigenist political agendas", s/he makes it clear that the perhaps thousands of "Mesoamericanist scholars and people interested in the Aztecs" are more important than the heirs to the Aztec cultural heritage themselves, the Nahua people, who number in the millions. This is basically like saying that the Spanish Wikipedia should be written for foreigners who learnt Spanish at school as a second language and for Spanish Language and Literature professors at US universities. But it is more acceptable to say such things about the peoples of the Americas because they are judged harshly by Western societies. --Node ue 23:08, 29 April 2007 (UTC)
  4. Oppose. The wiki has pages apparently written in the appropriate language, apparently meaningful, with pictures. I didn't see anything that looked obviously like vandalism. It seems to be doing no harm and can serve an educational purpose both for anyone reading it and for anyone working on improving it. -- 15:22, 16 June 2007 (UTC)
    Perhaps you didn't read the proposal. --Node ue 20:22, 19 June 2007 (UTC)
  5. Oppose There are enough articles. The most small wikipedias have only got a few people who edit. You can't close 200 wikipedias because of that! --Ooswesthoesbes 06:37, 25 June 2007 (UTC)
    Please read the proposal. --Node ue 22:54, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
  6. Oppose Enough articles, enough editors, enough activity = wikipedia. --Markvondeegel 10:45, 3 July 2007 (UTC)
    Please read the proposal. --Node ue 22:54, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
  7. Oppose Ninane 18:34, 4 July 2007 (UTC)
  8. Oppose I forgot to vote but I think you've lost Node --Fluence 01:16, 21 July 2007 (UTC)


What about simply placing a note on the front page that this is the Wikipedia in Classical Nahuatl and that whoever wishes to have an edition in one of the modern variants may file a proposal at Requests for new languages? --Johannes Rohr 22:11, 18 April 2007 (UTC)

That seems like a sensible proposal. However, it doesn't answer the concerns about quality arising from the fact that the vast majority of articles are written by someone who claims to only know the language at a basic level. It also doesn't solve the problem of language code which may seem minor but for regulatory compliance is important. -- 19:45, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
Yes, fixing the language code would be good, of course. And the supporters of this Wikipedia editions don't appear to object to that, so why not?
Concerning the quality: Of course, this is a concern, a concern that plagues many of the smaller Wikis which have few or no native contributors. If the quality of the majority of articles is so bad as to damage the reputation of Wikipedia, I believe it better be closed. However, the crux is, that, in order to give a faithful assessment, someone needs to be sufficiently proficient in the target language. At the present stage this would have to be an outsider as, quite apparently no-one fluent in Classical Nahuatl is available within Wikipedia. --Johannes Rohr 20:04, 22 April 2007 (UTC)
This may not be entirely true; en:User:Maunus seems to have some level of expertise in the language. That user already stated the belief that the Wikipedia in Classical Nahuatl is useless because nobody will read it, but I think it would be useful to solicit his/her opinion regarding the quality of existing contributions. Note that I have no problem with small Wikis written by people with bad language skills. My problem is with large Wikis written by such people -- Classical Nahuatl Wikipedia has over 1'000 articles. Even I am allowed to write an article and nobody will correct it: nah:Reik and nah:Maná are both written by me. The fact that I, with less than nah-0.5, am allowed to write an article that goes completely uncorrected is a little depressing to me. -- 01:53, 24 April 2007 (UTC)

ME also think it's a good idea. drini [es:] [commons:] 23:13, 23 April 2007 (UTC)

This is of course a sensible proposal, unlike the retaliative proposal for the closure/deletion of the Classical Nahuatl wiki. Uaxuctum 17:59, 29 April 2007 (UTC)

I corrected your articles about Maná and Reik, even it was the ortography you hate, it was the correct grammar, but I guess that's not all about right? Is something about Keane?. We're quickly learning Nahuatl. Āxcān, nihueliti nihcuiloa nāhuatl; teh, tepitōn in tlahtoa Caxtillahtōlli Node. ¿Hueliz ticpia cē tlācatlahtōl?
You best check your ego. --Node ue 22:53, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

Also, Akapocthli is nah-4 and the articles we write are now mainly based on his ortography and grammar. --Fluence 14:31, 30 June 2007 (UTC-5)

Nah-4 is not Nah-n.