Often if someone asks a question in English and then someone replies in Esperanto someone else will reply saying that the reply should be in the same language as the post. However I don’t know where this “rule” comes from and I’m sure it’s up to us as the community members to decide this sort of thing.

I think it should be totally acceptable to reply in the other language because I imagine that people might have a useful contribution to make but don’t feel comfortable replying in one of the languages. And sometimes it’s just easier to reply in one language or the other. If need be a translation can be added later.


5 Answers 5


Forbidding this is forbidding some experienced Esperanto speakers to contribute. It is much easier for an Esperanto beginner to read in Esperanto than for an English beginner to write in English. What should be done is encouraging the translation of answers, especially if they are not in the language of the question.


I think we shouldn't worry too much about the languages. We should allow answers in both languages. Translation shouldn't be required but certainly encouraged. A wide variety of answers is good - some in Esperanto, some in English.


I 100% agree with the idea of translating lingustically "mismatched" posts after they have been made. This allows ideas to flow as quickly and freely as possible, and clarification for people who speak other languages to (hopefully) promptly follow. I'm going to respost a comment that I made to someone in this thread: Language of esperanto.stackexchange.com

It's just an idea, not exactly a proposal since I haven't spent much time thinking about it in-depth and I don't have previous experience with StackExchange, but I'm curious for some input on it, to see whether it is worth improving or if it's just more effort than anyone here is interested in:

I think it could be useful to have in place a system where, if someone does come along who doesn't know English or Esperanto well, they can still attempt to submit a question and with our pooled resources here we can help convert their question to English or Esperanto. That leaves them with the problem of receiving answers only in English or Esperanto, but perhaps someone who knows their language can assist by voluntarily translating certain answers by request. It's not perfectly fair, but it at least provides some method for non-EN, non-EO speaking users to participate.

In addition, I think it would be a way to involve the vast part of the Internet that isn't English or Esperanto speaking into this Esperanto Language StackExchange resource, without it becoming incredibly chaotic. It would be more of a volunteer type service by our polyglot/bilingual users, not an obligation, and not a linguistic free for all, either.

Whether or not this concept is applied to all languages, I think it would work decently between at least Esperanto and English. If someone requests a post be translated either into Esperanto or to English, it's clear that there is someone here with the cability to do that, and because this site is all about exchanging information, it seems likely that if a request for translation is made, someone will voluntarily provide one eventually--especially if such a practice becomes encouraged and systemized in a way that it wouldn't make threads look cluttered and disorganzed.

  • 1
    Keep in mind that on the Stack Exchange network, where not differently stated, the main language of a site is English. Differently from Stack Overflow на русском, we are allowed to posts on the main site in Esperanto and English, but the site is essentially an English site.
    – apaderno
    Commented Oct 14, 2016 at 11:41

Having translations doesn't seems a problem. As far as I'm concerned I will respond just as it comes to my mind, if the question is in English then this will probably increase changes that my mind will begin to answer in English, but on the other hand as the question will be about Esperanto, chances are good that my mind will "turn into Esperanto mode". :)


I wrote something similar in my answer to this question.

Language of esperanto.stackexchange.com

This might be a meta-meta question, but is the OP here a question?

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