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Re: Debian etch

Hi Andrew,

I enjoyed reading your very knowledgeable analysis despite of the fact
I disagreed on few points. 

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Anyway let me clarify that the Debian code name "etch", if I transcribe
it into Japanese, it will be "エッチ".  It has the exact same spelling
in Japanese as the word frequently used to indicate "pervert".  This
word may mean a bit more than just pervert in some context but it still
holds milder nuances somehow.  So it can be a problematic name if
Japanese society is concerned.

As far as I have observed, no Japanese person has raised issue and I
see no issue.  Besides, all our web site leaves these code name as is
in english spellinmg. So relax. 

Japanese has so many words with the same pronunciation and we are used
to having different meanings for the same spelling.  The association of a
spelling to the meaning are only limited by the readers mind only :-)
Besides, we are much tolerant to sexual things than English speaking
society in general when it comes to textual or non-photo expressions.

Following are rationale behind my comment above.

On Wed, Jan 04, 2006 at 09:34:08AM +0000, Andrew Suffield wrote:
> On Tue, Jan 03, 2006 at 07:02:08PM -0800, Russ Allbery wrote:
> > > "lewd" or just "pornographic". Maybe you should rename this release or
> > > at least the japanese version...
> That's the edict translation. The problem with edict is that it's
> crap, and kinda outdated in places. Imagine a random mixture of
> wordnet and web1913, that would be similar.
> If it's coming from a girl who's screaming and throwing stuff at you,
> it might be a reasonable translation; in general, no. The correct
> Anyway, it's a different word. 'etch' is not a valid word in Japanese;

We do not use "romaji"(alphabet based spelling) normally in Japanese
text but we keep this spelling as is in Debian documentation since it is
a codename and technical documents. It is quite accepted to do this in
technical document by the engineer and we expect reader to be able to
pronounce then in English way with Japanese accents :-).  (Japanese
language teachers rarely read technical documents, though.)  If Japanese
person pronounce this code name, they pronounce it as "エッチ".

> they don't have the right sounds for it in their language. 

Translation is an effort to narrow this gap. There is always good enough

> While it
> would be strictly legal to use 'ecchi' as the pronunciation, there are
> better choices, and nobody is going to be doing that unless they're
> just being an arsehole - in which case you aren't going to stop
> them.

Wow, I am one.  But I think most other Japanese do the same as me.

> I don't think there's really anything to see here. If we'd called it
> "et'chy" (English doesn't have geminated stops - that's a pause in
> there, like a glottal stop) then there might be, but we didn't.

As we know etch came from "etch a sketch".  The word "sketch" is commonly used
imported English word in Japanese.

sketch = スケッチ ; ケ=ke 
  etch =   エッチ ; エ=e

So we put glottal indicator ッ with reason :-)

("e'chey" = "エッチー" is just an variant pronunciation for "エッチ"
for girls. )

As I see on the web, the toy "Etch-a-Sketch" was translated as
"エッチアスケッチ" by others.  So this seems quite normal translation.


PS: I never checked how the Toy Story figure Etch is distributed in
Japan.  I will appreciate any help on this.

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