Today I received an email from someone who needs help with Slicer, but due to language barrier did not feel comfortable asking on the forum. They wrote to me in Russian. This made me realize that it is probably not a single instance when users might need help from native speakers.
Should we think about some mechanism to help this kind of users? Some ideas that came to mind:
- have a “directory” of volunteers knowledgeable about Slicer and who would not mind being contacted in their native language, and mention it in multiple places
- activate Slicer gitter room for quick questions (slack-style)
- consider initiating crowd-sourced international versions of documentation/how-to (e.g., see how this was done for go language)
- have sections/tags in discourse to post in other languages (this can get really controversial, since moderation will require active participation of native speakers)
I understand it is a controversial topic, since we don’t want to encourage users to not use English, and it is possible that users who know English might start abusing it by preferring to use their native language. It also will inevitable complicate things. But it is also clear that Slicer is very popular internationally, and there is probably a lot of untapped potential by engaging non-English-speaking communities. By creating environment that is embracing international community, we might be able to spin and organize centrally sub-communities of native speakers who will be willing to help each other.