I've just stumbled over a great answer by Armen Tsirunyan, in which he used a large block of explanation in Russian. He then added a translation (a really amazing work I should say), but my question is: should we in general dis-encourage pasting long explanations in Russian, if the OP is in English? It seems to me to have little sense. I admit, for a foreigner who is learning Russian, it is already helpful to have an answer findable in English, even if the answer itself is in Russian. However it seems to me that we are relying too much on an obvious fast that most of us speaks Russian at the moment.

  • As a side-remark: I of course use this method as well: russian.stackexchange.com/a/175/47. So it's not against any one, but to form the general attitude.
    – texnic
    Jun 16 '12 at 15:35
  • The opposite of encourage is discourage, by the way. :P
    – Alenanno
    Jun 16 '12 at 18:34
  • @Alenanno Thanks very much! It's just too much of scientific texts in the last months to me (I'm writing up my thesis in physics) and a continuous use of English in a non-English-speaking environment. Very degrading for the language I should say :)
    – texnic
    Jun 16 '12 at 20:47
  • Don't worry at all! :)
    – Alenanno
    Jun 16 '12 at 23:36

In my opinion, we should rather allow to answer in Russian, than force users that speak good Russian and poor English to translate their thoughts to English.

However, we could encourage to provide tranlation by upvoting answers with translation more frequently.

  • Well, if someone asks in English it's likely that he is non-native and he's expecting answers that he can understand, that means English. I wouldn't comprehend any answer in Russian hence I expect answers given in same languages as the question is. Though, a quotation is acceptable, but needs explanation in English that the OP is able to follow the context.
    – Em1
    Jun 18 '12 at 9:22

We can leave it as is. If the one asking the question doesn't understand the answer, he could leave a comment or note that in his question. The answer could be translated then by author or somebody else.


I guess it's absolutely acceptable and desirable to post the quotation. But whenever you do that you should also provide a translation or at least a summary of the gist.

In my book there are three important advantages of that:

  • Providing a Russian text gives the OP the opportunity to work through that text (without reading translation or summary first) and trying to figure out what it does say. Provided, of course, that he is able to read Russian texts. Then he can compare with the translation or summary. - In case of not knowing Russian and accordingly unable to read that text, the OP will jump over the part, but will not dislike that part.

  • It is more obvious that the answer is not based on personal opinion of the author of the answer (only), but that the content is provided by an external source. Provided that the source is known for reliability and the answer hopefully visibly pointing out what the source is, then it implicitly strengthens the validity of an answer.

  • Other people than the OP can figure out more quickly if the answer is good or not. That's necessary if they are not very familiar with the topic or they're unsure and therefore they are in need of external resources to make your own opinion about what the answer may be. If the quotation is missing they need to follow a link (if provided) and search the appropriate paragraph in the source.

  • You probably meant "in my look"?
    – texnic
    Jun 17 '12 at 13:44
  • 3
    @texnic Nope, not only in my book it is correct ;)
    – Em1
    Jun 17 '12 at 15:25
  • Now I see. I thought you've written some book :)
    – texnic
    Jun 18 '12 at 9:04

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