Talk:List of languages by number of native speakers

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Link to old version[edit]

with the disputed Ethnologue or what ever sources, before someone decided to delete the smaller languages out of the list:

Semi-protected edit request on 25 December 2016[edit]

Turkish language speaking 82 million people in the world. They live in Turkey, Northen Cyprus and Germany. Malimalix (talk) 01:01, 25 December 2016 (UTC)

Not done The important thing about a table like this is that the numbers for the different languages could be comparable, and for that they should be sourced to a single text, which in this case is the Nationalencyklopedin. I haven't been able to access it, but I'm sure that its compilers have taken into account all speakers of Turkish, no matter which country they reside in. The numbers might be somewhat out of date, but they're equally out of date for all the languages listed. – Uanfala (talk) 01:41, 25 December 2016 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 4 January 2017[edit] (talk) 17:12, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Please review even your own article

Seriously guy?!!! The gap is not even a mistake it is litearly shoking ! 18 French 75 1.12%

CORRECTION Native speakers 274 million (2016)[1] 300 million total speakers


Not done The reason for this is almost given in your Le Monde link where it says: Une augmentation d'un quart en 4 ans, liée à de nouveaux critères de comptage. In order to avoid different counting criteria for different languages or different periods, we have chosen to use a uniform source, which is the 2007 edition of Nationalencyklopedin. Please read the introduction and the text above the table. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 17:33, 4 January 2017 (UTC)

Northern Min[edit]

The Northern Min entry (#80) should be removed from the top 100, because it double-counts the speakers of Eastern Min (#87). It seems the error occurred in the 14th edition of the Ethnologue, and has been copied by Nationalencyklopedin.

The background is that early descriptions of Min Chinese dialects divided them into Northern and Southern groups. After surveys in the late 50s and 60s, a seven-group classification emerged, and has become standard, e.g. in the Language Atlas of China. In this classification, the old Northern Min group was split into Eastern Min (Min Dong), containing the bulk of the population, a much smaller Northern Min (Min Pei/Bei) limited to Nanjing prefecture, Central Min (Min Zhong) and Pu-Xian Min.

  • The 12th edition of Ethnologue used the old two-way division, with Min Pei (Northern Min) said to have 10,290,000 speakers in China (dated to 1984) and 10,537,000 worldwide.
  • The 13th edition (1996) switched to a five-way division, incorporating the now-standard split of the Northern group, but leaving Southern Min unchanged. The Bin Bei (Northern Min) entry, now restricted to "7 counties around Jian'ou", has the same figures as the 12th edition, but with the note "(includes Min Bei, Min Dong, Min Zhong, and Pu-Xian)". The other three groups have no population figures for China.
  • In the 14th edition (2000), that note disappeared, leaving Northern Min (under the new narrow definition) with a claimed 10,290,000 speakers, even though the counties mentioned have a population of under 3 million. The Language Atlas of China (1987) gives a speaker population of 2,191,000 for this group. The other three groups still have no population figures for China.
  • In the 15th edition (2005), Eastern Min is finally given a number of speakers in China, of 8,820,252.

It seems that the Nationalencyklopedin figures for Chinese dialect groups are based on those in Ethnologue, scaled for national population growth, so the erroneous figure for Northern Min was duplicated there. Kanguole 16:01, 11 January 2017 (UTC)

At you can ask Ethnologue how they arrived at their figures for Northern Min [mnp] which currently (19th ed.) are "10,900,000 in China (2013). Total users in all countries: 10,904,000." This is also the place to discuss changes in future editions. (Here's which 14 Chinese languages they currently recognize.) Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 17:03, 11 January 2017 (UTC)
I know where the 4,000 in Singapore came from – they were listed as Hokchia speakers under Min Pei (old definition) in the 12th edition, and not transferring them to Eastern Min in later editions was another error. But I'm more interested in removing a blatant error from one of our pages. Kanguole 18:16, 11 January 2017 (UTC)
Go ahead then and don't forget to explain in a footnote why only 99 languages are listed. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 18:36, 11 January 2017 (UTC)
I think that adding that to the article would fall foul or NOR. Certainly changing the rankings of nos. 81–100 would. The only solution I can think of would be truncate the list at a point where we are confident that Nationalencyklopedin is reliable (which would be fewer than 80 entries). Kanguole 18:57, 11 January 2017 (UTC)
An alternative might be to leave the list unchanged but either strike out Northern Min or show it in grey, with an explanation why. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 19:06, 11 January 2017 (UTC)
That would be OR, I think. I've raised the issue at Wikipedia:No original research/Noticeboard#Ranked list of languages. Kanguole 13:20, 13 January 2017 (UTC)
The single response there concurs with my feeling that the only solution is to truncate the list somewhere before #80. Kanguole 18:48, 15 January 2017 (UTC)
I've seen that and I agree the cleanest way is to truncate the list. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 19:11, 15 January 2017 (UTC)
Should we truncate it to 70, 50, or what? Kanguole 01:45, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
There is only one argument I can think of: Let's provide our users with as much plausible and sourced information as possible. After all that's what Wikipedia is all about. 79 may look like a random number, but in this case there's nothing random about it. — I think that even if we choose 70 or 50 languages we'll need at least a footnote explaining why the Nationalencyklopedin list was truncated. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 10:33, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, that's a good argument for 79. But a footnote would still be OR in an article. The most we can do is a comment in the wikitext pointing to the talk page. Kanguole 10:52, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
Yes, we could do that. Should we use something like {{Do not archive until|99999}} to prevent this thread from being archived for 99,999 days (almost 274 years)? Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 11:23, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
No need – we can edit the comment to point at the location in the archive. Kanguole 11:25, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
Note also that according to the Swedish version of this page, in the 2010 edition of Nationalencyklopedin Northern Min has dropped to #84. Kanguole 17:02, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
At this point we give figures from the 2010 edition only for the top 11 languages alongside the 2007 figures. Wouldn't it be reasonable to switch entirely to the newer edition? Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 17:25, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
It would, if someone has access to it. Kanguole 17:35, 18 January 2017 (UTC)
User Paracel63 seems to have added the 2010 figures to the Swedish WP. Maybe he has access and can add the data here as well. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 18:18, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

(outdented) Hi! Yes, I've got access to the data (published here). No, I won't update the article (being more than busy at svwp). But all the data from the link is in hidden code. Please use Google Translate or another Swedish-speaking person for any additional clarification. Best of wishes.--Paracel63 (talk) 18:40, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

So Northern Min is actually #81 in the 2010 list – very neat! But I think it needs to be added by an editor with sight of the source. Kanguole 18:46, 18 January 2017 (UTC)

Semi-protected edit request on 4 March 2017[edit]

more than 110 millions of people are talking in Persian language. please fix the number from 45 to 110 ! thank you. Kalagar (talk) 07:38, 4 March 2017 (UTC)

Not done: please provide reliable sources that support the change you want to be made. Cannolis (talk) 11:00, 4 March 2017 (UTC)
Cannolis, the list in the article is based on a single source, as it ought to be – for a ranking of languages by the number of speakers we can't mix and match numbers that are coming from different sources. The only way to change the list is to find another, more reliable source that has such a listing. – Uanfala (talk) 04:24, 5 March 2017 (UTC)

See this reference: Windfuhr, Gernot: The Iranian Languages, Routledge 2009, p. 41. This mentioned Persian Language to have 110 million speakers round the world. --Bahraam Roshan (talk) 09:25, 7 April 2017 (UTC)

As Uanfala correctly stated above "the list in the article is based on a single source" (which is Nationalencyklopedin and not Windfuhr (2009)) and "[t]he only way to change the list is to find another, more reliable source that has such a listing." For more information on the problems of providing such a list please read all running text above it. Love —LiliCharlie (talk) 12:25, 7 April 2017 (UTC)