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MS Word: Auto-correct function on the word "bantu"



 
 
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  #1  
Old July 31st 06, 08:09 AM posted to microsoft.public.word.docmanagement
SisandaN
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2
Default MS Word: Auto-correct function on the word "bantu"

My post is about a matter that would perhaps be pertinent to South African
people. I feel strongly about it and so will raise it.

Quite simply, the word "bantu" is offensive to some black people of South
Africa. This is because the term was often used by the oppressive apartheid
regime in reference to black people of South Africa. Wikipedia sums it up
perfectly for me:

"Black South Africans were at times officially called "Bantus" by the
apartheid regime. Strictly speaking, the term "Bantu" is a linguistic term
derived from the word for "people" common to many of the Bantu languages. The
use of the word "Bantu" as an ethnic term has no scientific foundation and it
is no longer in wide use as a description of black South African people. The
Oxford Dictionary of South African English describes its use in a racial
context as obsolescent and offensive because of its strong association with
white minority rule and the apartheid system. The correct full description of
the Bantu people that are indigenous to much of Central, Eastern, and
Southern Africa is "Bantu speaking peoples"."
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bantu_p..._South_Africa).

Therefore, in the South African context, the term/word can be regarded as
offensive.

The Auto-correct function on MS Word changes the word "bantu" to "Bantu",
thereby only recognising the use of the word only in the form that is
offensive to black South Africans.

My suggestion is that at the very least the language files for South African
English be changed so that the Auto-correct function in MS Word does not
recognise the word Bantu as a noun, and thereby attaching a capital letter to
the first letter of the word.

Looking at it another way, the English word "bush" can be used as both a
noun that is used to refer to vegetation; the very same word is used as a
surname, and thus spelt with a capital letter "B" in the beginning. Since the
use of the word [bush], in it's written form, can be for multiple purposes,
the Auto-correct function ignores this word. Similarly, the word "bantu" can
be used to refer to "people" and can be used again in its derogatory formart.
It then follows that the Auto-correct function should ignore the word "bantu"
as well since it has multiple meanings.

Sisanda Nomnganga



----------------
This post is a suggestion for Microsoft, and Microsoft responds to the
suggestions with the most votes. To vote for this suggestion, click the "I
Agree" button in the message pane. If you do not see the button, follow this
link to open the suggestion in the Microsoft Web-based Newsreader and then
click "I Agree" in the message pane.

http://www.microsoft.com/office/comm...ocmanagemen t
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  #2  
Old July 31st 06, 11:12 AM posted to microsoft.public.word.docmanagement
Cindy M -WordMVP-
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 370
Default MS Word: Auto-correct function on the word "bantu"

Hi =?Utf-8?B?U2lzYW5kYU4=?=,

Looking at it another way, the English word "bush" can be used as both a
noun that is used to refer to vegetation; the very same word is used as a
surname, and thus spelt with a capital letter "B" in the beginning. Since the
use of the word [bush], in it's written form, can be for multiple purposes,
the Auto-correct function ignores this word. Similarly, the word "bantu" can
be used to refer to "people" and can be used again in its derogatory formart.
It then follows that the Auto-correct function should ignore the word "bantu"
as well since it has multiple meanings.

I fully respect what you're saying, and how you feel. My following comment is
soley concerned with the grammatical question of capitalization:

In the paragraph I quote above, look at how you've typed the term "English":
it's capitalized. Not because you are referring to citizens of England, but
because a *language* is always capitalized in the English language (as opposed
to German, for example). Technically, the same is therefore true of "Bantu"
(which is a language, as you state in your message :-)). And I rather think that
it is for these reason that AutoCorrect makes this change - because it does so
for all terms that could be a language.

Cindy Meister
INTER-Solutions, Switzerland
http://homepage.swissonline.ch/cindymeister (last update Jun 17 2005)
http://www.word.mvps.org

This reply is posted in the Newsgroup; please post any follow question or reply
in the newsgroup and not by e-mail :-)

  #3  
Old August 1st 06, 04:11 PM posted to microsoft.public.word.docmanagement
CyberTaz
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,291
Default MS Word: Auto-correct function on the word "bantu"

No disrespect intended, but if you feel that strongly about it why not just
use the built-in feature to Stop Automatically Correcting... & be done with
it? I sincerely doubt that MS is going to switch to the Oxford Dictionary of
South African English any time soon.

Further, if you look up the term 'Bantu' in the Encarta Dictionary used by
Word you would find that the term is primarily defined as a *language group*
rather than as an ethnic term, and as a recognized language the "B" is most
appropriate. Only as a second definition does it generally refer to "member
of a large group of peoples living in equatorial and southern Africa" - with
no mention of color, status or other pejoritive implication. IOW, as I
understand it, the term is being treated as it has been defined since
hundreds of years before the imposition of apartheid. Atrocious as that
policy may have been, the mere fact that any 'regime' puts a new spin on a
valid term is hardly grounds for dispelling the term. In fact, to do so
dismisses & discounts the language(s) and/or culture to which the term
historically applies, thereby serving to validate the misuse.

Quite frankly, the way you freely interchange the B/b in your post still
leaves me utterly confused about which would be preferable, anyway.

--
Regards |:)
Bob Jones
[MVP] Office:Mac


"SisandaN" wrote in message
news
My post is about a matter that would perhaps be pertinent to South African
people. I feel strongly about it and so will raise it.

Quite simply, the word "bantu" is offensive to some black people of South
Africa. This is because the term was often used by the oppressive
apartheid
regime in reference to black people of South Africa. Wikipedia sums it up
perfectly for me:

"Black South Africans were at times officially called "Bantus" by the
apartheid regime. Strictly speaking, the term "Bantu" is a linguistic term
derived from the word for "people" common to many of the Bantu languages.
The
use of the word "Bantu" as an ethnic term has no scientific foundation and
it
is no longer in wide use as a description of black South African people.
The
Oxford Dictionary of South African English describes its use in a racial
context as obsolescent and offensive because of its strong association
with
white minority rule and the apartheid system. The correct full description
of
the Bantu people that are indigenous to much of Central, Eastern, and
Southern Africa is "Bantu speaking peoples"."
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bantu_p..._South_Africa).

Therefore, in the South African context, the term/word can be regarded as
offensive.

The Auto-correct function on MS Word changes the word "bantu" to "Bantu",
thereby only recognising the use of the word only in the form that is
offensive to black South Africans.

My suggestion is that at the very least the language files for South
African
English be changed so that the Auto-correct function in MS Word does not
recognise the word Bantu as a noun, and thereby attaching a capital letter
to
the first letter of the word.

Looking at it another way, the English word "bush" can be used as both a
noun that is used to refer to vegetation; the very same word is used as a
surname, and thus spelt with a capital letter "B" in the beginning. Since
the
use of the word [bush], in it's written form, can be for multiple
purposes,
the Auto-correct function ignores this word. Similarly, the word "bantu"
can
be used to refer to "people" and can be used again in its derogatory
formart.
It then follows that the Auto-correct function should ignore the word
"bantu"
as well since it has multiple meanings.

Sisanda Nomnganga



----------------
This post is a suggestion for Microsoft, and Microsoft responds to the
suggestions with the most votes. To vote for this suggestion, click the "I
Agree" button in the message pane. If you do not see the button, follow
this
link to open the suggestion in the Microsoft Web-based Newsreader and then
click "I Agree" in the message pane.

http://www.microsoft.com/office/comm...ocmanagemen t



  #4  
Old August 2nd 06, 03:02 PM posted to microsoft.public.word.docmanagement
SisandaN
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 2
Default MS Word: Auto-correct function on the word "bantu"

Hi there,

No offence taken.

Sorry for the confusion caused by interchanging the B and b. "Bantu" with
the capital letter "B" is the derogatory form of the word, which was
generally used to refer to the black people by the apartheid regime; on the
other hand "bantu" directly translated into English from Nguni (a language
group consisting of Xhosa, Zulu, Ndebele, Swazi) means "people".

The word, in its derogatory format, has to be done away with. I realise that
this is only applicable to black South Africans and that in the bigger scheme
of things it really is a minor thing. However we, as black South Africans,
buy and make use of the software as well, and thus expect a pleasant user
experience much like other Microsoft Word users elsewhere. I realise it is an
easy thing for me to go and change the settings so that Word does not auto
correct this word anymore going forward, but then other users, who are
sensitive about this sort of thing as I am will at one stage or another have
a similar encounter to mine, which I think should be prevented.

I realise that I made some errors with my use of the capitals when making my
post, but that should not in any way be seen to lessen the importance of my
concern. (I could very well attribute my grammatic errors to Bantu education,
which was an apartheid government policy, but that is not the point of this
post.)



"CyberTaz" wrote:

No disrespect intended, but if you feel that strongly about it why not just
use the built-in feature to Stop Automatically Correcting... & be done with
it? I sincerely doubt that MS is going to switch to the Oxford Dictionary of
South African English any time soon.

Further, if you look up the term 'Bantu' in the Encarta Dictionary used by
Word you would find that the term is primarily defined as a *language group*
rather than as an ethnic term, and as a recognized language the "B" is most
appropriate. Only as a second definition does it generally refer to "member
of a large group of peoples living in equatorial and southern Africa" - with
no mention of color, status or other pejoritive implication. IOW, as I
understand it, the term is being treated as it has been defined since
hundreds of years before the imposition of apartheid. Atrocious as that
policy may have been, the mere fact that any 'regime' puts a new spin on a
valid term is hardly grounds for dispelling the term. In fact, to do so
dismisses & discounts the language(s) and/or culture to which the term
historically applies, thereby serving to validate the misuse.

Quite frankly, the way you freely interchange the B/b in your post still
leaves me utterly confused about which would be preferable, anyway.

--
Regards |:)
Bob Jones
[MVP] Office:Mac


"SisandaN" wrote in message
news
My post is about a matter that would perhaps be pertinent to South African
people. I feel strongly about it and so will raise it.

Quite simply, the word "bantu" is offensive to some black people of South
Africa. This is because the term was often used by the oppressive
apartheid
regime in reference to black people of South Africa. Wikipedia sums it up
perfectly for me:

"Black South Africans were at times officially called "Bantus" by the
apartheid regime. Strictly speaking, the term "Bantu" is a linguistic term
derived from the word for "people" common to many of the Bantu languages.
The
use of the word "Bantu" as an ethnic term has no scientific foundation and
it
is no longer in wide use as a description of black South African people.
The
Oxford Dictionary of South African English describes its use in a racial
context as obsolescent and offensive because of its strong association
with
white minority rule and the apartheid system. The correct full description
of
the Bantu people that are indigenous to much of Central, Eastern, and
Southern Africa is "Bantu speaking peoples"."
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bantu_p..._South_Africa).

Therefore, in the South African context, the term/word can be regarded as
offensive.

The Auto-correct function on MS Word changes the word "bantu" to "Bantu",
thereby only recognising the use of the word only in the form that is
offensive to black South Africans.

My suggestion is that at the very least the language files for South
African
English be changed so that the Auto-correct function in MS Word does not
recognise the word Bantu as a noun, and thereby attaching a capital letter
to
the first letter of the word.

Looking at it another way, the English word "bush" can be used as both a
noun that is used to refer to vegetation; the very same word is used as a
surname, and thus spelt with a capital letter "B" in the beginning. Since
the
use of the word [bush], in it's written form, can be for multiple
purposes,
the Auto-correct function ignores this word. Similarly, the word "bantu"
can
be used to refer to "people" and can be used again in its derogatory
formart.
It then follows that the Auto-correct function should ignore the word
"bantu"
as well since it has multiple meanings.

Sisanda Nomnganga



----------------
This post is a suggestion for Microsoft, and Microsoft responds to the
suggestions with the most votes. To vote for this suggestion, click the "I
Agree" button in the message pane. If you do not see the button, follow
this
link to open the suggestion in the Microsoft Web-based Newsreader and then
click "I Agree" in the message pane.

http://www.microsoft.com/office/comm...ocmanagemen t




 




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