France bans English terminology for gaming technology

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English terms invaded every corner of France, causing panic among linguistic fundamentalists, for example, the trade fair popular with politicians during the election season is called Made in France in English .

Despite their widespread use in business and elsewhere, the government decided to opt for games. And officially banned terms such as game streaming and cloud gaming.

French officials continued their centuries-old battle to preserve the purity of the language by reforming the rules for the use of English video game terms.

And while some expressions find clear translations, others seem more difficult. Henceforth, the more complex terms joueur-animateur en direct and jeu video en nuage should be used for any government communications.

The changes were made in consultation with the French Ministry of Culture, which in the past touted the gaming industry as a French economic success story. France regularly issues warnings of the decline of its language across the Channel, or more recently from the Atlantic.

However, she told AFP she was concerned that English terms could become a barrier to understanding for non-players.

“The video game industry is full of patterns that present a barrier to understanding for non-gamers,” she added. Many French non-gamers will have no idea what a term like live game streaming means.

France is trying to preserve the purity of the language

French language officials, l’Académie française, have also expressed concern about English terms in games, after it published a dictionary of alternative French terms in 2017.

The French Academy warned in February of a downturn that should not be seen as inevitable. The terminology, including the SNCF rail operator trademark, was highlighted. In addition to imported terms such as big data.

Among the many terms whose alternatives are provided in official French were cloud gaming, which became jeu video en nuage, and eSports, which now translates to jeu video de competition.

The ministry said experts searched video game websites and magazines to see if the French terms existed. She explained that the general idea was to allow residents to communicate more easily.

The changes were issued in the Government’s Official Gazette, making them binding on government employees. However, it is difficult to see it growing in daily use or even via French websites or newspapers.

Previous efforts by the French Academy to replace English did not go well. Her attempt to get people to use l’access sans fil à internet instead of wifi failed.

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