Friday, June 20, 2008

My dislike for Swedish

I just hate it when I hear my own native language in the general chat in Stormwind. It makes me shrink and want to go hide somewhere, pretending not being Swedish.

Lately I think I've seen more of Swedish in the general than usual. It may have to do with the fact that Sweden for the last week has been participating in the European Championship of football/soccer, an arrangement which by the way actually has some impact on the European servers in general. I've got the clear impression that the interest of playing is going down - Azeroth seems a bit deserted when the major matches are show on TV. This game is for some reason seems to enhance whatever nationalistic feature there is within the players - suddenly they seem to forget where they are and what they're actually doing and the general chat is turned into a forum for football ramblings - in Swedish.


Honestly I think there's no excuse not to speak English in public as long as you're playing on an English server. If you want to speak Spanish, French or German - you've got plenty of other servers to choose. But what if you come from a smaller language area? There's no Swedish server available - you're forced to pick one of the major languages.

Well that's no excuse in my eyes to suddenly fill the chats with Swedish. We've got an extremely good knowledge of English, learning it at school from the age of 8. And by the way, the whole bloody game is in English. There's no way you can quest and get by in the game without a basic knowledge in English. So speaking Swedish or by the way Hungarian or Dutch aloud is just a sign of laziness or that you don't give a shit about the people around you.

I think you should stick to English as long as you're using channels like general and trade - especially in the major cities, where the chats sometimes are filled with crap. It's rude to add things to the chat that 90 percent of the players won't understand. I can live with the original Orcish, I certainly don't need ten other Orcish-like languages.

I even hesitate to speak Swedish in /say, at least when there are a lot of other listeners around, people who don't want to hear it. If I'm seeing some Swedish people in a not too crowded place it's different, then I may use it, if necessary, even though I prefer making a party of it, so that people who aren't concerned won't have to listen to the conversation.

What about parties then? Well in Battleground I think it's totally unacceptable to use anything but English in the raid chat. And the same goes with PUGs. I often check out where people come from before starting. And even if we turn out to be 4 from Sweden and just 1 from UK, we stick to English in the party chat as long as that foreign guy is around. Anything else would be extremely impolite. (I've seen it myself a couple of times from "the other side", partying with some Dutch people once, and a Polish party another time. It was SO annoying having to look for the few English Lines mixed in with all those incomprehensible sentences.)

I guess I've made my point pretty clear by now; if you're in public - use English! Still most of my current playing actually is in Swedish. How come? Well, I belong to a Swedish speaking guild. We're quite strict about it, our current policy is that we won't even accept players from other Scandinavian countries. Of course this makes recruitment much harder than it else would be. But on the other hand we never have to think twice about what language to use in guildchat or on ventrilo. It's really relaxing and convenient to be able to run instances in you own language. No matter how well you understand the foreign language - there will always be a little room for misunderstandings, and you'll always have to pay more attention to actually understand everything that is said. You'll easily miss the small nuances, ironies and jokes.

Still we're raiding in English for the time being, since we've got a raiding alliance with a Danish guild. Being neighbours and having related languages, you could think that we should understand each other using some kind of Scandinavian mixed language, but sadly enough we don't. The only way to make the raid work out is actually to speak English in raid and on vent. But at all other times my main language in WoW is Swedish.

Some players thinks differently. Like an old game friend of mine, a Norwegian guy who I used to party with on my former server Kul Tiras. He had some odd features, including that he always refused to speak anything but English, no matter where the other player came from. Even if he would understand me writing in Swedish (he was even half Swedish himself) he would reply me in English, claiming that the international atmosphere was one of the reasons for him to play the game. Using Norwegian would simply destroy the game experience for him. So when his English guild stopped raiding, he couldn't join the Swedish one I was in at that time - he just couldn't cope with the idea of playing in Swedish.

Right now I think I'm getting the best out of the two worlds. I love being part of a Swedish guild - with the possibility to actually see a few of my guildies one day in a much easier way than it would be if we were spread out all over Europe.

Still by reading blogs and forums and blogging in English myself, I feel that I connect to the World Wide WoW Community - including the US and Australia (where many of my readers come from). I don't feel isolated at all - I can exchange experiences and ideas with players from all over the world - and I get the opportunity to practice and improve my English a lot.

I'll end this post in a hopefull way. I think we're about to see an improvement when it comes to the Swedish poluting the general chat. You see - the other night Sweden lost against Russia in a glorious wipe. We were owned - we didn't stand a chance against them. It was like a newly 70 dinged party in all greens entering a T4/T5 instance. So now we're out of the football tournament. It was a pain to watch, but if you watch it from the bright side - this will probably mean an end of Swedish football ranting in general chat for a while. We'll be hiding in a corner, tending to our wounds pretending to come from any other country but Sweden.

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