Is it necessary to ask or answer questions in English on the mailing list?

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This article is part of the FAQ series.
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The simple answer is: No!

Having said this, a comment you may see frequently is a suggestion to resubmit or also submit in English. This is mainly because English is probably the most common shared language for various list members, and therefore you reach the greatest audience by submitting in English. Another way of looking at this is to realize that the list members are so eager to help or learn from your question, they would like you to submit in a language they understand.

The Scribus developers and also the "rank and file" (regular posters, bug reporters etc.) definitely understand more than one language. As of this date (April 2006), you can be quite sure of answers to or translations of your postings from the following languages:

  • English (in all its flavours)
  • French
  • Polish
  • Czech
  • German (in all its flavours)
  • Dutch
  • Finnish
  • Portuguese (in almost all flavours)
  • Italian

Given the fact, that Scribus is translated into a heap of languages, other tongues, esp. popular ones like Spanish or Russian, are probably "supported" as well. Questions or replies in more or less "exotic" languages like Gaelic, Basque or Frisian will most likely be ignored, since no one can expect even basic knowledge of them in a broad audience.

If you think your skills in one of the languages mentioned above aren't sufficient, don't be shy. Simply try to describe your concern as well as you can. There are lots of people out there who will gladly help you to find your way, despite all of the obstacles that language barriers may constitute. Remember, it is the Scribus list, which is very special in terms of friendliness, politeness and ... speed.

Please don't be offended if your question is not answered in the language in which you asked. We actually try to keep to the original language, but some of us may understand the question in a language we can't answer in. If that's a problem, ask someone to translate for you.

Also, if you see questions/answers in a language you don't or hardly understand, it's OK to ask for a synopsis in your language. Chances are someone will accomodate you.

A Special Case

If you are going to post to the list about, for example, a compiling problem, and want to include error messages, this is where English is recommended.

Excerpt of a post:

When posting error messages on mailing lists it's often worth re-running the job in the 'C' locale, eg:

LC_ALL=C LANG=C make

since this produces POSIX formatted error messages in English. This is a multilingual list, but the devs' common language is English and you'll get a better response faster if you stick to it for really technical stuff like error messages.