The Academy of the Hebrew Language has unveiled a new website aiming to offer visitors a comprehensive, user-friendly guide to the organization's decisions on all matters related to Modern Hebrew.
Academy director Tali Ben-Yehuda said this weekend, "Our goal is to turn the site into an all-inclusive, useful and authoritative resource on [the academy's] decisions on language. In the past, if someone wanted to study the academy's decisions they had to obtain printed material. Today he or she can look through all of its rulings on a given matter on the site, or simply type in a search word. This is something that wasn't available to web users before because we didn't have the proper technology."
Decisions related to grammar and orthography have already been posted to the site, as well as a question-and-answer section and a list of frequently asked questions. Visitors can also submit questions to academy experts, and even consult with them on Hebraizing non-Hebrew first or last names.
The academy also asks visitors to contribute to the new website by sharing their own linguistic habits. According to the site, the organization "feels it is important to receive information from the general public on its linguistic habits and preferences, information that will then be incorporated into the linguistic, historical and cultural considerations that guide the academy in its decisions."
The academy said in a statement that it "hopes to enrich the site's content for the benefit and enjoyment of visitors. The homepage offers a dynamic display of historical documentation, articles on linguistic matters and neologisms. In the future, the site will include an online bookstore and electronic library of academy publications and more."
One issue currently on the agenda: Choosing between a list of Hebrew words ("sig," "diyun" and "pulmus" are some of the candidates ) for the English word "debate."
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