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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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Discussion Details

Title: Re: 16.894, Abolishing Fund Drive
Submitter: Richard Sproat
Description: I would definitely be against merging Linguist with other
organizations for the sake of eliminating fund drives.

One of the best things about Linguist is its independence. Inevitably,
if it gets merged with another organization, that independence will be
compromised. It won't happen overnight, but I would expect to see a
gradual erosion as more and more of the workings of Linguist get
"aligned" with the practices of the parent organization(s).

Though the analogy to NPR (or PBS) fund drives has been made, I think
it is a poor one. On NPR you have little choice but to listen to the
fund drive messages since they are frequently of indefinite duration,
inserted between things that you actually want to listen to. With
Linguist, if the messages really annoy you, you can always turn on
email filters that will block the messages.

Richard Sproat
Department of Linguistics
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Beckman Institute
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Date Posted: 26-Mar-2005
Linguistic Field(s): General Linguistics
LL Issue: 16.927
Posted: 26-Mar-2005

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