Language for taxonomic names, redux

Luc Pardon lucp at
Thu Mar 2 13:18:58 CET 2017

On 01-03-17 23:52, Michael Everson wrote:
> Here are the Russian Wikipedia articles on Proboscidea, where the Linnaean name is clearly marked “лат[инский]” ‘Latin’.

Would I dare to point out that this marking is courtesy of the {{lang}}

See the source in the edit page:

    '''Хо́ботные''' ({{lang-la|Proboscidea}})

I guess the Russian Wikipedians don't know about la-linnaeus yet :^).

In earnest, it illustrates how the decision "to tag or not to tag" is
influenced by the willingness of the author to follow guidelines. He
could have taken the easy road, typing “лат." himself instead of having
it generated.

However, because he could be bothered to spend a few extra keystrokes,
the template now also generates the following HTML :

   <span lang="la" xml:lang="la">Proboscidea</span>

And that would be of help to a blind Russian reader, finding his way
around the web with a screen reader, and trying to learn all about
elephants & things.

The point is that "Proboscidea" is _not_ Latin, it is _derived_ from it.
That would discourage authors from tagging it as "Latin" tout court, and
there is no suitable alternative - yet.

Providing a special-purpose tag for these derivatives would remove that
reluctance, thereby increasing the chance that they are tagged, thereby
making the web more accessible to the blind.

How could that be a Bad Thing?

Товарищ Luc

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