Why the internet speaks English

Last week, Vine updated their video-recording application, localising it into 20 different languages.

For those new to Vine, the app lets users create 6-seconds looping videos, which they can share with friends through the app or any other popular social media platform.

However, in their efforts to reach new users in their language, Vine’s developers confronted a complex language barrier: how to translate ‘Revine,’ one of the most popular words within the app.

“Early on in the process of localizing Vine, we started playing with the options for its special terminology. Some words like “revine” are new (even for English!). Our fearless translators and moderators had to suggest alternatives for transforming “Vine” into a verb.”

The problem is that transforming a name or noun into a verb is not as easy in other languages as it is in English.

If you know any other languages aside from English, I suggest you take a moment to turn Vine into a verb and then conjugate “revine” in your head.

Even when speaking in another language, does it sound like something you’d actually say, or would you just use the English word instead?

The thing native English speakers often fail to understand is that English is extremely easy to manipulate in comparison to other languages. Introducing new words by turning names like Vine or Google into verbs almost feels natural.

As internet neologisms become more and more popular, people all over the world struggle to use their own language when speaking about internet. Words such as meme, tweet and trolling have yet to be translated into other languages, nor does it seem likely they ever will, especially as the number of English speakers increases every year.

In the end, if you check the latest update of Vine in any of its new languages, you’ll find out that the share button is, after all, still called “Revine”.