The internet is an increasingly multilingual space: how is your first language used together with other languages in internet
The internet is fast becoming a prevalent communications channel across a wide range of economic sectors as well as among individuals. I examine the language choice and code switch online, by a group of Moldovan internet users. First I will provide background information about the languages situation, language identity and use in Moldova.
The official language of Moldova is the Moldovan or Rumanian language; nonetheless, several other languages are spoken here: Russian, Ukrainian, Gagauz, Bulgarian, and Polish. Such a variety of languages can be easily explained by the fact that for many centuries the territory of modern Moldova was at the border of European and Asian empires (fig.1). Most linguists will attest that the Moldovan language is just a dialect of Romanian, which was formed under the influence of the Russian and Ukrainian languages.
Romanian, spoken by the majority of the people of Moldova, was viewed by both the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union as an impediment to controlling the local population. During this time Romanian-language education and the Romanian press were forbidden as part of a process of forced “russification”. The solution was to adopt Romanian lexical words to the cyrillic alphabet, for example: “tree” in Romanian is “copac” and in Moldovan Cyrillic would be “копак”, it follows the same phonetically sound but written in different alphabet.
There are two key dates during its history that demonstrate that fact: the first annexation in 1812 of Eastern half (actually territory of Moldova) to the Russian Empire as a result of a treaty at the end of Russo-Turkish War. In 1919 Moldova turned to form fart of Rumania, however the Soviet Union did recognized this incorporation and in 1939 with the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact Moldova fell within the Soviet interest zone. It was until...