Talk:Dutch customs and etiquette

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Ridiculous Article[edit]

I think this article is, at least 90% of it, ridiculous.

The Dutch expect eye contact while speaking with someone. Looking away or staring at the ground is considered impolite and may be perceived as lying.

Really, is this not just ridiculous? The above statement holds true for anybody. It's human communication. -- (talk) 20:28, 27 July 2008 (UTC)

Please don't make changes to this article just to prove a point, see WP:POINT. It's vandalism. justinfr (talk) 21:02, 27 July 2008 (UTC)
Yes, it is ridiculous. Although the article contains some useful bits of information, most of it is either universally applicable or grossly inaccurate. Iblardi (talk) 21:57, 27 July 2008 (UTC)
Your blanket statement that "anybody" would consider anything but staring horrendously rude is not only ABSOLUTELY incorrect but incredibly ignorant. Cultures vary quite widely, the farther east in Asia you go, the less likely you are to be received well by staring a hole through someone's head. It's not exactly universally received in North America either, you'll find yourself getting strange reactions especially in business settings if you make unbreaking eye contact. see Eye Contact for more references and less anecdata. edit- Wow, all users voicing that every other culture in existence approves of staring are Dutch. shocking.go slowly (talk) 23:18, 3 November 2008 (UTC)
I don't understand whether you mean it is ridiculous.... or not . Please elaborate. Arnoutf (talk) 23:29, 3 November 2008 (UTC)

We should add the bit about how the Dutch don't do irony. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:12, 9 May 2010 (UTC)

This is indeed one of the most ridiculous articles I have ever come across, but its very existence reflects the almost surreal obsession the Dutch have with their collective self-image. Especially over the past 10 years or so. (talk) 23:03, 20 July 2010 (UTC)

dudes dont take things too seriously — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:58, 26 July 2012 (UTC)

This article makes a complete mockery of the concept of an encyclopaedia. I despair. (talk) 15:16, 20 July 2016 (UTC)


I've edited the language paragraph which has been edited in the past before. Dutchmen are generally outstandingly well in speaking other languages, and there is no other country in the world which comes close to the Dutch system of education regarding foreign languages. The fact that the majority of French barely speak a word of English, and the English generally don't know a word of French either, while Dutchmen speak English very well and French fairly good as well, and even German reasonably well. As mentioned, both our mother language Dutch, and the foreign language English are obligatory subjects at all levels of high school. French is obligatory in the first 2 years of the lowest level of high school and 3 years at the moderate and high levels of high school education. German is obligatory in the second year of the lowest level of high school, and from the second till the third year at the moderate and high levels of high school education and either French or German(the pupil can choose which one of the two subjects he/she wants to choose)is obligatory in the fourth year too. Latin and Greek are obligatory in the first few years of VWO/Gymnasium, the two highest levels of high school education. Spanish, Italian and sometimes even Chinese can be chosen as subject instead of other subjects as well, and some primary schools are even starting to teach Chinese, and English is being taught in the last few years of primary school for quite some time now. I can say with certainty there is not country in the world with an educational system which teaches so many languages and so well.Psych0-007 (talk) 03:08, 26 January 2008 (UTC)

Sorry, Psych0-007. Your English teachers would be quite disappointed. You are not as facile as you think. In the paragraph above, the first sentence is redundant---3 times. It should end at "paragraph." The second use of "edit" and the further use of "in the past before" are completely unnecessary. Your use of "well" in the second sentence is in error. It should be "good". ("Dutchmen speak outstandingly well in other languages" would be acceptable) Also, the third group of 41 words is NOT a sentence. You have omitted the verb, the action word. As it reads, it is merely a collection of phrases. Later sentences also have problems but I believe I have made my point. Normally, I would not call another editor to task regarding their English grammar but you present yourself and your education as the best. Reading the above, some might take exception to that claim.--Buster7 (talk) 04:50, 23 June 2008 (UTC)

Scandanavians and Germans perform far better in IELTS tests than do the Dutch. Anyone who lives or stays in the Netherlands for a protracted period will realise that the Dutch are not as fluent as they think in foreign languages. I have a child in primary school in the Netherlands, and can say without hesitation that it does not excel at teaching foreign languages at all. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:46, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Holland vs. Netherlands[edit]

Almost 2/3 of the Dutch live either in North or South Holland, the region provides for half of the Dutch economy and the Dutch ministry of foreign affairs and board of tourism uses Holland instead of the Netherlands when advertising for the country abroad (, except for a handful of provincials, no one finds it insulting to be called a 'Hollander'.

Ummm.... While agree I have never heard of someone being insulted at being called a Hollander, not even half of the dutch live in north & south Holland...

Besides you being arrogant, you're also wrong. About 38% of the Dutch population lives in Holland. And being offended is maybe a big word, but it is quite odd to call someone from Friesland, Limburg or Groningen a 'Hollander'.

I live in the east, and while I personally do not take offence if people refer to the entire country as Holland (if they couldn't know) but I know heaps of people who will be seriously hurt if you call them Hollanders. They are definately not. This has mainly to do with the (possibly perceived) arrogance of the "real" Hollanders. Just to be on the safe side just call everything the Netherlands. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:10, 11 April 2008 (UTC)

It is the same by saying that the Scots are English!, Only if the Dutch football team plays, it's Holland... Scubafish (talk) 09:02, 15 July 2008 (UTC)

Foreigners speaking Dutch[edit]

The Dutch language is extremely hard to pronounce and most Dutch people will perceive a foreigner trying to speak Dutch as someone who's having great difficulties trying to express him or herself.

As far as I can tell we dutch consider it a great effort and do appreciate it a lot if a foreigner tries to speak dutch. Changed the paraghraph accordingly. . . . s k i n 15:10, 13 September 2006 (UTC)

The paragraph does not claim otherwise.Rex (talk) 12:45, 17 November 2007 (UTC)

The Dutch language is easy enough to pronounce... —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:13, 9 May 2010 (UTC)

Not for foreigners... - Simeon (talk) 04:01, 12 August 2010 (UTC)

Yes it is. It is not a difficult language to learn. It is often painful to hear Dutch people speaking English, but we are polite enough to tolerate your efforts. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:48, 9 July 2012 (UTC)


The section "The people" describes tendencies as absolutes. It is highly biased. Brammen 13:09, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

I disagree;

Dutch society is egalitarian; the government tries to keep differences in income to a minumum. A situation like in the US is unknown. Tolerance is also present as Euthansia, Prostitution and Gay marriage are legal. The Dutch are modern, no denying that, they have access to most if not all technical innovations, at the moment there are more cell phones than people. Self reliant is also correct, Dutch society is not based on entire families taking care of each other eveyone is expected to take care of his or her own bussines as much as one can. Entrepreneurial; many international countries are Dutch or partly Dutch. Heineken, Shell and Phillips are good examples. They value education. Education is considered extremely important, there are systems to help drop outs and education is obliged till you're 17. hard work, ambition and ability speaks for itself. The Dutch have an aversion to the nonessential also commonly known, everything needs to have a purpose. Ostentatious behaviour is to be avoided, generally the protestant culture there but also true. Accumulating money is fine, but spending money is considered something of a vice and highly associated with being a show-off. (kind of the same) A high style is considered wasteful and suspect(kind of the same). The Dutch are very proud of their cultural heritage, rich history in art and music and involvement in international affairs. no denying that, I'd say that goes for every people. Rex 13:55, 28 August 2006 (UTC)

Rich history in art I can understand, but music?Colmfinito 22:03, 9 February 2007 (UTC)

"Ostentatious behaviour is to be avoided, generally the protestant culture there but also true. Accumulating money is fine, but spending money is considered something of a vice and highly associated with being a show-off. (kind of the same) A high style is considered wasteful and suspect(kind of the same)." I don't think any of the above is true anymore for the younger generation.

(the previous is not mine) showing off even in younger people isn't considered to be accepted, show-offs still are people who show the how little they have, most youth find someone with overly expensive jewelry and clothing laughable "pimping is considered a novelty to most".

  • showing off is only accepted with certain items, like something new of which the price is not of great value in their eyes, although they do wish to know the price Markthemac 17:29, 22 July 2007 (UTC)

The whole paragraph about People should be erased, as it doesn't reflect any custom or etiquette. It is biased, and Rex' argumentation only encourage my opinion. Let me make myself clear.
One cannot argue that a society is modern by its access to technology (specially by the ratio cellphones by inhabitant). Unless it is explained that by modern one understands accessibility to technology. But few people will agree with that definition. Modernism is a term that describe a position towards a broad range of human activities. I am sure there is now days a big group of dutch people more oriented to tradition than to change. Still, mine as well as the affirmation "dutch people are modern" lack of references.
I believe that many dutches will agree that the legalization of prostitution, euthanasia, same sex marriage and marijuana, answers more to pragmatism than to tolerance.
One cannot say that a nation is entrepreneurial because it has a brewery, a company that produces electronic goods and a bi-national petrol company. Or else in the same track of ideas, every single industrialised nation is then modern and entrepreneurial, and so there is no point in highlighting it.
A dutch person works 35 hours per week, which put them number one worldwide as the people that work the less. So how can it be said here that a common value in the dutch nation is hard work.
The definition of ability is somehow positive in itself. So, again, who doesn't value ability?
If the paragraph "People" wants to be kept, then "Aversion to the nonessential" should be replaced by pragmatic.
"Accumulating money is fine, but spending money is considered something of a vice and highly associated with being a show-off by some people", is this the definition of miser? (One who takes pleasure in the mere possession of cash but has no intention of putting it to any use). So this should be either avoided or replaced by something like austere or frugal. These words would be more descriptive.
Nevertheless, it should be noted that Dutch architecture now days is rather flamboyant or eccentric. It rarely follows pragmatism solely. Which contradicts the sentence "A high style is considered wasteful and suspect".
Finally, I don't believe many Dutches would be proud of their "involvement in international affairs". The lack of support shown by the other European nations during the decolonisation towards the Netherlands, comes from the fact that the Netherlands is a dwarf when it comes to diplomatic issues. In my own opinion, if a country like United States, France or UK, legalizes drugs, abortion, same sex marriage or euthanasia, it would start to be considered as a humanitarian or a universal cause, as oppose to a trait of "tolerance". That is because of their true involvement in international affairs and diplomatic importance. So I have to disagree in this point with the article. Again, this is only my humble opinion.
As biased as this paragraph, one could replace it then with:

    Dutch people are austere, parochial and pragmatic.

But I would also disagree with such a paragraph, and would see no place for it in this article.
Camilo Sanabria 20:18, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

Again nearly all your statements can be easily proven wrong and are misplaced. For example, it's not a matter of how long you work, but how hard you work during the time you work. That fact that the average Dutch person works 32 hours doesn't prove anything on them not being hard workers.Rex 20:40, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

Rex, the point is that, since this article is mostly opinionated it doesn't belong in an encyclopedia. Do you mean to tell me that all Dutch people are tolerant? What about the man who ran for Prime Minister (I forgot his name) who wanted to end immigration to the Netherlands? Does that sound tolerant? Stereotyping an entire population is ridiculous, and does not belong on Wikipedia. The article "People" should be edited drastically or erased. 19:25, 11 November 2007 (UTC) The notion of Dutch tolerance is ridiculous. Nobody in Indonesia views Dutch people as such. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 07:52, 9 July 2012 (UTC)

Driving skills[edit]

I've started to write about Dutch driving skills. Might be something, might be not. Well... I'll see if the sentence will survive the next few weeks... :-) SietskeEN 19:59, 9 October 2006 (UTC)


I just removed this paragraph:

Though Dutch people were known as tolerant people toward different cultures and races, the image is no more true. Muslim citizens of Netherlands are considered as second level citizens by many high officials. In 2007, Dutch minister Bernard Bot said Muslims lack a tolerance "gene".[1] Several MPs most notably Geert Wilders are hostile toward Muslim citizens of Netherlands. Referering to increased presence of Muslims in Netherland, Geert Wilders said: "Take a walk down the street and see where this is going. You no longer feel like you are living in your own country. There is a battle going on and we have to defend ourselves. Before you know it there will be more mosques than churches!"[2]

I think it's rather tricky to base a statement like this on the views of two politicians - the article is about the Dutch people, not Dutch politicians, and even though some of these politicians can be rather vocal, they do not represent the majority of the Dutch society. Therefore, I removed the paragragh. It might be true that Dutch people in general are becoming less tolerant, but there'd be a need for other sources to back up a statement like that. --JoanneB 12:11, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

I tried to copyedit the paragraph to remove any generalized statement. Generally right wing parties in netherlands have similar viewpoints. And I think in a democracy politicians represent a fraction of people. In any case I am not willing to push for having this paragraph in the article.Sangak 12:27, 18 February 2007 (UTC)
I've tried to address the issue by writing a more balanced integration section, which discusses the history, policy and diversity of integration in the Netherlands, instead of emphasizing just one theme. It may be too political (in the sense that it concentrated too much on the level of politicians, policy makers etc.), feel free to edit it. C mon 12:41, 18 February 2007 (UTC)

Remove this paragraph altogheter: apart from it being biased, it is not a relevant part in an article discussing "Dutch customs and etiquette". Most of it discusses recent events that carry no relevance for the topic. Apart from that, the content of this entire article seems unverifiable.

Some mention of recent tensions is allright, but this was becoming a chapter on its own. It had nothing to do with Dutch customs anymore. I shortened it quite a bit, so that people reading this article understand that there has been a debate on Islam in the Netherlands.

Heeft het gesmaakt[edit]

Everything under "heerlijk" is unacceptable, that made me laugh. If I said, "ja het was lekker" then people assume that what I ate was sub standard?

it's kinda how you pronounce it. but restaurants always want feedback if something wasn't great Markthemac 04:10, 2 August 2007 (UTC)


"The Netherlands have a very high standard of education"

not anymore. unless compared to america, we really dont, we just focus too much on language (because of our history of trade). we do really bad on scientific subjects· Lygophile has spoken 07:01, 14 May 2007 (UTC)

sorry the Netherlands according to IQ is highly educated, so still true. Markthemac 17:37, 22 July 2007 (UTC)

Be serious Markthemac, you cannot support your opinion with that reference (please read the comments concerning Richard Lynn studies, e.g.
After compulsory education many Dutches stop their participation in education (more than 35% of them) before completing two more years:
Similarly the number of students following higher education compared to the number of students/pupils in the country is quite low compared with other European countries:
So, there is no point in highlighting that Dutch people "value education". For, based on the figures Dutches don't value education more than others, and secondly, in which country education is not valued?
On the other hand, the comment about the "very high standard of education" definitely lacks of serious references (as the rest of the affirmations in this articles). For example, PISA 2003 results may help for this. But still, the use of "very high" is suspicious. First, there is no (as far as I know) international education ranking system where The Netherlands do top 5. Secondly, Canada, Germany, France, Japan and the United States, each has a huge amount of scholarly publications (much more than the Netherlands do) and you will not hear from them any comment about their "very high standard of education". Actually they are very critical about their standards.
Camilo Sanabria 05:42, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

A logical obeservation would be that all those countries have many more inhabitants. BTW:

Quality education The Netherlands is a country well known to people worldwide, not only because of its beautiful tulips or because of the Orange Football Club, offering so many moments of wonderful football during the world cup competitions. Many students have experienced that the Netherlands is also a reliable address for students worldwide, due to its high quality of education. Every year there are thousands students from all over the world coming to study in the Netherlands.

Rex 13:58, 26 July 2007 (UTC)

Dutch humor[edit]

Hej Buster,

you keep removing the remark that in Dutch jokes Belgians are often depicted as stupid. While this is biased in itself, the practice is a fact (just like the fact that in Belgian jokes the Dutch are often depicted as being greedy and moneygrubbing). If you insist to remove the fact that Belgians are depicted as stupid you should remove the remark on jokes on Germans as well. No more are "the Germans" arrogant as "the Belgians" are stupid. It seems you are a bit biased yourself (perhaps this has to do with you Belgian ancestry?).

Richard 13:40, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

No "perhaps" about it!. It has EVERYTHING to do with my heritage--Buster7 (talk) 23:41, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

I am galled. Not only by the comment but by your stubborn persistence that it remain. It is clearly offensive to at least 10 million people and should not be presented as mainstream Netherlandic thought. Wikipedia relies on the printed word and editors that give their opinions. But this is offensive, nothing else. The only possible rationale for inclusion is continued prejudice. You crassly disregard common standards with this unfortunate statement. Its educational value is Nil...Nada...Nothing. You can surround it with subtle verbs like percieved and dipicted but this does not change a thing. I am not pushing my POV---I am merely protecting it. I will continue to correct this type of and elsewhere. We are creating a new encyclopedia for the Ages. Not the Dark Ages, tho!--Buster7 (talk) 22:40, 30 May 2008 (UTC)

If this is supposed to be the "rallying point" that you speak about in several copy/pasted messages, then I think you have come to the wrong place. An encyclopedia is supposed to offer encyclopedic (=complete) knowledge. Reporting that the Dutch depict Belgians as less-than-intelligent in their jokes (it is admitted to be a stereotype) is part of that knowledge. It does of course not imply that the authors of Wikipedia think they are; it doesn't even imply the Dutch do. (In fact, most Dutch probably consider the Flemish to be nice people who speak the same language, though with a 'funny' accent.) But it is a fact that those jokes exist. Personally, I couldn't care less, but when you start deleting sourced content just because you are offended that it mentions the existence of those jokes, and get other editors to bend to your demands without using proper arguments, this smacks of censorship, which is contrary to the spirit of Wikipedia.
Also, for someone so easily offended, you are pretty quick to accuse other users, and deleting (parts of) other editors' perfectly reasonable messages doesn't exactly comply with the highest standards of politeness either. Iblardi (talk) 10:26, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
The deletions are on my talk page and are intended so as NOT to continue the "joke". Do you suppose I would like to read it four times whenever I look at my talk page????? What you call a perfectly reasonable message is, to me, offensive...(the message is offensive, not you). As it stands now, the article states that the Dutch target their neighbors. Do you really feel it is necessary to list the offenses? I don't.--Buster7 (talk) 10:56, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
That message wasn't mine, it was from user Richardw nl. It was reasonable in that it tried to explain to you why deleting the content wasn't a good idea and even offered you a compromise. My problem isn't with the mentioning of the Belgian-jokes as such, but more with the fact that you manage to get information deleted because you are personally offended by it, while it is in fact not offending to anyone - you just have to read the context (i.e., everything that surrounds that single word you seem to be upset about) to see that. Iblardi (talk) 11:08, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
I know where the message came from. --Buster7 (talk) 11:15, 31 May 2008 (UTC)
Ah, I see what you mean. Sorry, I misunderstood. Iblardi (talk) 11:18, 31 May 2008 (UTC)

Three things. First: this discussion is rather hard to follow since half the comments are on another talk page. I think they should best be merged (and, maybe, moved to the talk page of the article). Second: the remark on how Belgians are treated in Dutch jokes (is this an acceptable way of putting it?) was not added by me but by Rex Germanus on January 1st 2007 - well over a year ago. Last: I'm sorry you feel this way. It is not and never has been my intention to hurt your (or anyone's) feelings. Mentioning the practice does not mean I advocate it. Richard 14:47, 31 May 2008 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Richardw nl (talk • contribs)

What should be considered is that the "teller" of an off-color joke is rarely offended. Its the person or group of people that the joke is about that are usually offended. Like I've said elsewhere, this encyclopedia is not advanced or improved by including it in any article. I appreciate your straight-forwardness, Richard nl. About the varied locations, guess it was my newbie mistake NOT to have it on the articles discussion page. Do you suggest I move them there? With the blanks filled in, of course.--Buster7 (talk) 05:03, 1 June 2008 (UTC)
I think that would probably be a good idea. This discussion seems valuable enough to keep it next to the article that it's about. The result in the article (name both "neighbours" (plural) but not how they're misused) is complete and not likely to be taken offensively. By the way - your reaction to the name "Rex Germanus" (I don't know that user's nationality) could cause discomfort by some people so when you're transferring this discussion you might want to consider rephrasing and/or omitting that. Richard 11:10, 1 June 2008 (UTC) —Preceding unsigned comment added by Richardw nl (talk • contribs)

Retrieved from User talk:Buster7 with slight modifications.

Now its the Germans[edit]

Would anyone have a problem if I change the reference in the Humor section about Germans and intelligence to read...."stupid foreigners." Its the same troubling issue as before and my request to change is also the same.--Buster7 (talk) 21:43, 22 June 2008 (UTC)

I think it can be completely omitted since it doesn't add any useful information. I've implemented is as such. Richard 11:11, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
PS: If you want to critisize Psych0-007 (Your English teachers would be quite disappointed, see above) you should also take more care in your own contributions: in this small section you have missed two apostrophes (it is the Germans, so it should read it's, the same goes for it's the same issue as before, and a question (would anyone...) should be ended with a question mark. Furthermore, change should (in my opinion) not be written in the present tense. Richard 11:32, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
apostrophes in English seem sometimes fairly random to non native speakers. The same goes with the tense for Dutch speaking people; where using a present tense for the past is perfectly normal. Arnoutf (talk) 11:42, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
Its without an apostrophe is the possessive form of it (like his, hers, yours, ...). In this case it was simply used wrong. The tense is arguable (that's why I said: in my opinion) but it was not used for something in the past but rather for something that might be done in the future. Personally, I would have written 'if I changed' or 'if I would change'. But like said before: that is my opinion. Richard 15:05, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
(apostroph = apostrophe, posessive = possessive) But I understand. Like me, your focus was on editing, not typing. Regarding the question mark, or lack of it...(it's lack?) The New World Secretarial Handbook, page 326, states:"The question mark is not needed at the end of a courteous request that is phrased as a question." Also, my use of "change" is most definitely in the present tense and is correct. It remained in the present tense until someone "changed" the section. When I wrote the sentence, it related to NOW. Your suggestions were just as good. Let's not get tense over tense. Psych0-007 was bragging. I wasn't.--Buster7 (talk) 21:25, 23 June 2008 (UTC)
He was. I just thought your comment was a little too harsh. If you want to correct someone you might as well take the diplomatic path. Which doesn't mean you didn't have a point. Richard 07:05, 24 June 2008 (UTC)

Dutch (?!?) etiquette[edit]

The Dutch consider it rude not to identify oneself.
When introducing themselves, the Dutch shake hands and say their name.
It is considered impolite to enter a house without being invited to. The Dutch consider it an invasion of privacy.
When yawning, the mouth should be covered with a flat hand or fist.

Isn't this just laughable? Do some people really think this applies just to the Dutch, and not pretty much to every polite person living in this world? ROFL. --Fertuno (talk) 15:37, 28 September 2008 (UTC)

Well... yes and no. Shaking hands is common in WESTERN cultures but not in EVERY culture. Also, in some cultures the "front door" is litteraly "open to everyone". So, it doesn't apply to every polite person living in this world. But (as stated in the first paragraph): many general points of European ettiquette apply to the Dutch as well - and many points mentioned in the article could be removed since they go without saying for the majority its readers. Richard 08:54, 6 October 2008 (UTC)
I continue to be amused at the amount of Dutch people that are absolutely shocked that the rest of the planet don't share their "values". But of course, if they don't adhere to them, they're not a polite person, aka civilized person. Nice implications there, it just furthers the stereotype of Holland.go slowly (talk) 10:06, 27 December 2008 (UTC)
Geez, Didn't you know that they invented the whole covering the mouth thing when yawning. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 00:15, 9 May 2010 (UTC)

niceties gets you nowhere in business, and we've been at it much longer than anyone else. Markthemac (talk) 23:18, 7 March 2012 (UTC)

External link to a page of mine, now moved[edit]

There is a link on this page toward a page that existed on my old website, "" I have moved my site, and that page is now at I do not want to change the link myself, because I'm concerned about any appearance of conflict-of-interest. If anybody else feels motivated to do so, and feels that the page still merits linkage, I'd appreciate the help. Stevenroyedwards (talk) 18:43, 28 September 2009 (UTC)

I have changed the link accordingly - nothing else. Richard 07:22, 29 September 2009 (UTC)


this is wrong: The Dutch value privacy and seldom start interactions with strangers. sit in a dutch train and everybody speaks to you (can we remove that?) Markthemac (talk) 05:15, 21 January 2012 (UTC)

 Done - it was out of context and contradicted some of the points that followed. Richard 09:17, 23 January 2012 (UTC)

Turn Signals[edit]

The article states: Indicators are used rather much, often switched on right before changing lanes. First: "used rather much" is improper English. But rather than improve this sentence, it should be removed as nonsensical. Switching on your indicators right before changing lanes is universally normal. When else would you switch them on? Before "right before"? No. Once you decide to switch lanes you indicate your desire. That's true in the Netherlands as well as everywhere else. Now, if the Dutch did NOT use their turn/changing lanes indicator, that would be worth mentioning. The sentence should be removed. ```Buster Seven Talk 11:49, 3 May 2012 (UTC)

I think that what's meant is that the indicators are often switched on at the last possible moment, being the moment the lane switching actually occurs, instead of one or two seconds ahead so that other traffic has the chance to notice it and, if appropriate, react to it. For instance: it's rather annoying preparing to exit the highway while driving behind a vehicle that looks like it's going to keep following the highway, only to find out at the last possible moment that it's taking the same exit. However: I've found this is not typical Dutch behaviour so for that reason the sentence could be removed instead of rewritten. Richard 07:08, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
PS: in a lot of cars, indicators appear to be optional - some drivers (almost?) never use them. But that too is not typical Dutch behaviour. Richard
See also this change - someone tried to improve the page, but (in my opinion) failed to do so. Subsequent vandalism masked this edit. I will try and put the original information back into the article without damaging your work too much. Richard 15:05, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
Thanks Richard. I see what you mean. The March 29 changes altered some of the meaning and intent (example;turn signal usage). I'll be glad to assist if necessary. ```Buster Seven Talk 15:16, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
I think it's more like it was now (and more in accordance with the given references). Richard 15:22, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
WELL  Done..:~)...Buster Seven Talk 19:11, 4 May 2012 (UTC)
m(_ _)m Richard 07:51, 7 May 2012 (UTC)

Article's existence[edit]

Why this article exists completely confuses me in an encyclopaedic sense. But what really confuses me is its content, not only is most of it generally assertion, it's nothing remotely useful or of any value. It should probably be deleted as it's not useful and may be deemed offensive. — Preceding unsigned comment added by NamedRedshirt (talkcontribs) 19:07, 5 February 2013 (UTC)

Have to agree, it came up near the top on a search for Dutch marriage customs, and contained no real information on that sunject. Seems to be more a place for Dutch peeps to oversell themselvles and whinging expats to have a go at them. There is no equivilent entry for British customs and etiquette. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 09:58, 15 April 2013 (UTC)


Do the Dutch bow/curtsy to members of the Royal Family ? I noticed that, when Queen Beatrix was still in the throne, Princess Máxima for example always curtsied to foreign kings/queens, but I don't know if people in the Netherlands curtsy to her. (talk) 20:40, 17 October 2013 (UTC)

Most of them wouldn't since the royal couple isn't that formal. When Máxima is present during festivities (e.g. on Queen's / King's Day), she's even addressed on a first name basis. She can be seen riding a bike and also swam the Amsterdam Canals for Amsterdam City Swim.
Shortly before becoming king, her husband stated in an interview that Mensen mogen mij aanspreken zoals ze willen, omdat ze daarmee op hun gemak kunnen zijn. [ ... ] Het gaat er mij meer om dat mensen zich op hun gemak voelen, dan dat zij over woorden struikelend, verder niks meer durven te zeggen (people may address me as they want, because then they can be at ease. [ ... ] For me, it matters more that people feel at ease, than that they stammer and are afraid to speak on).
In short: it's up to you. If you want to bow, they won't stop you. If you don't, that's fine too. Richard 08:31, 18 October 2013 (UTC)

Dutch vs Belgians[edit]

I know there's already a discussion about this on the same page, but it is very messy and over three and a half years old. So here's a new one to start out fresh.

For once and for all: Dutch people often make jokes about Belgians revolving around their alleged stupidity. So do the Poles, they joke about the Czechians. Norwegians make fun of Swedes. Etcetera. According to this site (, which is a large collection of Dutch jokes, about 8 percent of Dutch jokes are about Belgians.

There's no point in discussing whether it's offensive to people. Should we remove the Ku Klux Klan page so we don't offend black people? Should we remove Mein Kampf so we don't offend the Jews? Wikipedia describes, it doesn't prescribe. It is a fact that these jokes are happening, and whether they are offensive or not is an entirely different discussion. The jokes exist, and you can't have an article about Dutch humour without it. --Harmenator (talk) 22:40, 9 January 2014 (UTC)

I was not the one objecting to mentioning something in that direction. The whole thing started somewhere around this edit dated 05/29/2008. A few edits later, it resulted in When making fun of other nations, like most nations the Dutch most frequently target their neighbours, which in time was changed into Like most people, the Dutch most frequently target their neighbors when making fun of other nations. This was removed about two and a half months ago, during Epeefleche's quest to reduce uncited content. Richard 08:42, 10 January 2014 (UTC)
If you are not objecting to mentioning something in that direction, then why did you remove my contribution?Harmenator (talk) 21:38, 14 January 2014 (UTC)
Because it was incomplete (the Belgians are not the only neighbors the Dutch have) and the way it was written, it was bound to make history repeat itself. Richard 09:41, 16 January 2014 (UTC)

Where is the NPOV? How about some reliable references on something else than traffic?[edit]

Now, I realize that I may have some conflict of interest, being Dutch myself, but with the kind of claims this article makes, some references really are necessary. To highlight a couple of gems:

  • "Dutch people tend to view themselves as modest, tolerant, independent and self-reliant, although most expats and foreigners experience that this is not often the case as Dutch people tend to distance themselves from people they consider as a foreigner according to research conducted in the expatriate community."
Okay, so there is research conducted in the expatriate community. Nice. Now how about actually referencing that research? This honestly comes rather close to "according to some people" and similar weasel-words and -phrases. For that matter, a source for the "Dutch people tend to view themselves as..." might be useful as well. Furthermore, "experience that this is not often the case" refers to all four points mentioned before. Since when does people distancing them from people they consider foreigners have anything to do with modesty, independence or self-reliance? Tolerance, yes, but the other three... hardly.
(Also, could the sentence have been written more awkward than that? The second part runs on and on and there is some rather strange word-order in the middle as well, even beyond the issues I mentioned)
  • Basic manners in most countries, such as holding a door open for others, apologizing or saying 'thank you', are not part of common Dutch manners. Source, please? (By the way, I agree on the first point from personal experience (it is seen as somewhat stuffy and outdated), but the other two sound more like stereotypes talking. And yes, I know that personal experience/original research does not count as reference, but that goes both ways, for exclusion and inclusion both)
  • The Dutch have a strong preference for the non-essential and ostentatious behaviour is to be avoided. Ahem. Is this sentence supposed to mean that the Dutch have a strong preference for the non-essential, or that non-essential and ostentatious behaviour are preferably avoided? Right now, the first half of the sentence reads one way and the other half reads the other.
  • A lot of Dutch humor is often of sexual and racial nature and the Dutch people have a tendency to not understand foreign jokes and only understand Dutch jokes. Okay, this really needs a source.

I count twelve references. Eight are traffic-related. One has to do with surnames. That leaves all of three sources for the remainder of the article. Also, one of them - the one used for part of the humour section - is used to support statements like "At the end of the 17th century the Dutch lost their sense of humor", while the source rather specifically says that according to one specific historian, this is the case. The other remaining sources (source, really), The UnDutchables, is rather well-known for being part-serious, part-humorous and at some points exaggerated. If I remember correctly from when I read it, which is admittedly a few years ago, the foreword even acknowledges this. That's not to say it can't be used, but to have it as basically the sole reference to hold up 50+% of the article, no.

I can go on for a while, but I'd rather not. What it boils down to is that in its current state, this page is better off being moved to Unsourced stereotypes and generalizations of Dutch customs and etiquette. And yes, I do intend to work on this article as well and see if I can't whip it into shape some, but with the amount of rewriting this needs and the reverting back-and-forth that went on earlier today, I felt I was better off making a talkpage post first. AddWittyNameHere (talk) 15:16, 24 January 2014 (UTC)

Most of what you address above, is added by two users who I susupect of actually being the same person. His "unless of course you are a biased Dutch person (as usual)" on my talk page strongly hints to prejudice on his side. Not to mention the ambiguity of some of his sentences. Richard 09:21, 27 January 2014 (UTC)
Note: after looking into things a bit deeper, you're not the only one who suspects such a thing. I have started a sock-puppet investigation here. AddWittyNameHere (talk) 12:24, 27 January 2014 (UTC)

Reverted back to version on the 21st due to sockpuppeting; discussion regarding "dense and moderately fast traffic" under Traffic[edit]

Considering that nearly all edits since the 21st were either by a sockmaster and his puppets (see here) or reverts of their edits, I have reverted the article back to the version of the 21st before Robedia's appearance.

This happens to be the version without "*Traffic on motorways is dense and moderately fast,[clarification needed] often above the speed limit [3]", pretty much the only point in the article that editors seemed to be in disagreement over before Robedia's appearance.

I am not necessarily opposed to adding it back in in some form. However, I do believe the wording needs to be more clear on both the point of density (do we have a definition for dense, or at least actual numbers, or a source calling traffic on motorways in the Netherlands dense?) and the point of moderately fast (same as with dense. Both are pretty arbitrary). Furthermore, the site used as reference does not support the claim as a whole. It merely supports that it happens that people drive well above the speed limit (which happens in pretty much any country which both has frequent traffic and speed limits, I'd dare guess) and does nothing to support the use of the word often, which is again rather arbitrary. Because what is often to one person is not often to another, I feel that if we use it here, we ought to source it well, such as a source that outright states "often", "commonly", "frequently" or another synonym. All in all, I feel that the sentence needs better sourcing and perhaps a slight rewrite so that it becomes clear to the reader what is considered dense, moderately fast and often. Now that the disruptive editor is gone, however, I am certain that we can discuss this and reach consensus and/or a compromise. AddWittyNameHere (talk) 01:21, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

User:Ad Poppink (edit | talk | history | links | watch | logs) (who is not a puppet of Robedia) did not object to this edit, which addresses all of your concerns voiced above. Richard 09:05, 28 January 2014 (UTC)
I know that User:Ad Poppink is not a sockpuppet, that's why I addressed specifically that point as "something to discuss" rather than it falling under the blanket revert for the sockpuppet/master's edits. I agree that it might mean they do not object to it, or they chose not to edit the page so long as that chaos earlier was going on. Figured I was better off putting it on the talkpage when no discussion was needed than not put it there while discussion might still be needed. In any case, thanks for replying. AddWittyNameHere (talk) 16:07, 28 January 2014 (UTC)

basic etiquette?[edit]

Basic to whom? (talk) 01:48, 25 December 2014 (UTC)