Right-to-Left Languages Coming to Twitter

In a recent announcement, Twitter said that the languages read right-to-left would be on their way to Twitter Translation Center, including Arabic, Farsi, Hebrew and Urdu. However, the network will be fully available in these four languages later this spring.

Twitter through a blog post on Wednesday said that the company is working hard to ensure that tweets and hashtags will work in right-to-left languages. The company also said that it has “made changes behind the scenes to give right-to-left language speakers a localized user experience,” though the changes are not explicitly disclosed.

It is a matter of common observation that there are alignment/justification bugs in the programs designed for oppositely-oriented text, so it is a big test of Twitter’s abilities to make its hashtags adjust properly and without any bugs.

A network of 425,000 volunteers powered the Twitter’s translations program. It is through the help of these volunteers that the company has managed to launch Twitter in 22 languages, including Traditional Chinese, Indonesian, Portuguese, Italian, Filipino, Finnish, Norwegian, Polish, Turkish, Danish, Malay, English, French, Korean, Swedish, Spanish, Simplified Chinese, Hindi, Japanese, German, Russian and Dutch, all of which are read from left-to-right.

Excluding Thai, all the four languages supplemented to Twitter are in fact the only languages in the translation center for which Twitter is not available yet

Interestingly, you need not to have Twitter available in particular language to tweet in that language. What you need is to type your message in your language of choice. A good number of people appreciate Twitter’s organizing power in the Arab Spring, but Arabic-speaking tweeting users must need to interact with site in non-native language.

Please let us know about your thoughts on Twitter’s decision to bring Hebrew, Urdu, Farsi and Arabic to its social platform. Will this help draw people to microblog in South Asia and Middle East.

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