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THERAPEUTIC-COMMUNITIES  February 2005

THERAPEUTIC-COMMUNITIES February 2005

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Subject:

Re: TCs in the News 2005/34

From:

Craig Fees <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Therapeutic Communities <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sat, 19 Feb 2005 22:41:46 +0000

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (118 lines)

Dear Dave,

I would have responded earlier, but have been away.

I've been agonizing over this one myself. Apart from not assembling the
links and sending them at all, which is a real option, I don''t know the
answer. One thing I've tried doing is setting up a web-page (at
http://www.tc-of,net/webex/webex3.htm) in which I put the same snips and
links up on the Internet, with a link to the Google on-line translator,
which you can use to translate whole web-pages, or just bits. The
translations are pretty rough, but they at least give you an idea of what
the article is about. But unless you go to that web page daily, you won't
know whether there have been any new news reports or not, which may defeat
the whole idea of a current awareness service. I am also still finding out
whether it takes too much time to put together or not.

I've toyed with doing a once-a-week round-up instead of the more-or-less
daily alerts. That would mean fewer emails for you to delete. But some news
links go dead or change after a short period of time, and there are some
news reports which it is important to see when they are still fresh - if
someone you know has been killed, for example, or has been given an award,
you want to know as soon as possible.

I could break them up into separate emails by language, so that you
wouldn't have to scroll down each email to find a language you know -
English-language reports could come in one email, Spanish in another,
French in another (well, there aren't too many French...I don't know why),
German in another and so on. That would mean even more emails than now, but
if people wanted that, we could try it. The experiment on
http://www.tc-of.net/webex/webex3.htm divides the links up into
language/country groups.

I can't provide translations, partly because English is the only language I
speak, and partly because of time. I'm an archivist for an archive and
study centre devoted to therapeutic community, which was established and is
run by a fairly small charity, and where there is more than enough work for
three or four people - but there is only me (and even that is quivering on
a kind of knife-edge). I have a translation program on my computer which
gives me enough of a clue about the meaning of the news reports to select
out paragraphs or sentences which - I hope - will be sufficient to alert
people who know the language to an article they'd like to read. But I
couldn't inflict the "translation" on anyone (am happy to supply an
example!),  and I don't have the time to clean them up myself.

Another partial solution might be for people who find this or that article
particularly interesting or important  - and who feel comfortable working
in a different language - to summarise what is said for other people on the
list; or to give an idea of why the article is important, in that different
language. A summary of English language reports into German for German
speakers, say; or from Portuguese into Italian. We could use the web to
share those, if it became too irksome on the email list.

I could also pare down the information I give to the barest minimum - link,
source, and date for example. That might make the emails easier to scan,
and quicker to put together. Would it make them less useful?

We're in the middle of any number of revolutions. We couldn't have had this
discussion five or ten years ago; and we might not even have wanted to. The
technology is changing, the material available on the Internet is changing,
we're in the middle of a Europe which is changing, and our notion of who we
are is changing. TCs in the News is admittedly a crude experiment; we're in
the middle of finding ways of learning about and communicating with one
another, and not all the experiments will work out. But it may be worth
putting up with things in this clumsy stage, while we work out whether it
is worthwhile, and whether there are better ways of going about it. Are
there? Is there a better - maybe even more efficient - way of sharing among
a community of a dozen languages (or perhaps more) what is happening in and
around them?

Ways that we can afford and sustain? Making the assumption - which may be
wrong, and shouldn't be taken for granted - that it is worthwhile. I'm
working in the dark here.

Yours,

Craig









At 13:25 19/02/2005, you wrote:
>Rowdy
>
>It is a pity that you have misunderstood my mail. I was hoping for a more
>constructive response.
>
>I believe in a healthy exchange of ideas and communication in any language.
>But it is pointless sending me e-mails I cannot understand.
>
>Someone in Italy for example, does not want to receive several e-mails a
>week in English if they do not speak that language. For some of us, I am
>dyslexic, it is not always possible to learn other languages. We struggle
>with our own.
>At the same time it is good to know what people are saying.
>
>Is it not possible in these days of computer wizardry,that a site could be
>created into which articles could be logged, and translated into whatever
>language was spoken?
>
>Dave


Dr. Craig Fees
Planned Environment Therapy Trust Archive and Study Centre
Church Lane
Toddington
near Cheltenham
Glos. GL54 5DQ
United Kingdom

Phone/fax 01242 620125
Email: [log in to unmask]
http://www.pettarchiv.org.uk

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