Reddit Hosting Linguistics Projects

The recently launched r/Arabs Dialect Project uses popular social network Reddit to map different Arabic dialects in the Middle East and Africa.

Reddit Hosting Linguistics Projects

Reddit has been used for many things, from crowd-sourcing the Boston Marathon bombings, to raising money for the down and out. Its latest use? Linguistics research.

The recently launched r/Arabs Dialect Project uses Reddit to map Arabic dialects from the Middle East and North Africa. Many dialects are mutually unintelligible and have as much in common as Portuguese and French. Participants in the project retell a story from the folk tales of Nasreddin Juha in their native accent.

According to The Economist, the project intentionally stresses the differences in each accent, almost as if “an old uncle” were telling it. More than 25 samples from two continents have been uploaded so far. Since launching as a Digg-style link-sharing site, Reddit has grown into a massive community.

About the author

Based in sunny Los Angeles, Neal Ungerleider covers science and technology for Fast Company. He also works as a consultant, writes books, and does other things.



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