portfolio website has finally moved to a new domain with a friendlier URL: http://multiculturalim.com
The name was chosen among several
dozens of second-level domain names suggested by me and discussed with my
numerous friends around the world. Here are some key factors that made me
choose this name as the most appropriate:
is more COMmonly used and more COMpatible with the content of the website than
.ORG or .NET, because it can also hint at "COMmunication" and "COMmunity"
rather than "ORGanization" or "NETwork";
good name should contain only one or two words (the shorter the better) for
easier memorization (smart portmanteau words are appreciated); it may also include a popular word slightly misspelled
(purely for successful indexing by the search engines);
include a more universally understood word in a more popular language, e.g. in
English or featuring an existing in several languages and easily recognizable
stem. A good example is DUNIA (DUNYA, DUNIYA) meaning "world" in many world
languages, from Turkish and Malay to Hindi and Swahili;
be symmetrical, e.g. start and end with the same letter, for visitors’ viewing
pleasure - you'll see what I mean!
I also intended to include my name
in it to make it look more personal (which it is), but not self-centered, less pretentious and
rather searchable by keywords. Every candidate was then properly tested by
googling and compared with other matches it had appeared with in the search
results. Some early names chosen this way were LIMWORLD, LIMWORKS and LIMUNITED,
the latter being an anagram of UNLIMITED. Only LIMWORKS passed the .COM filter,
but was eventually rejected for taking the risk of being associated with some
art studio based in Singapore.
A new set of possible names included
NICHELIM, a word play on the famous French brand, and a couple of beautiful
exotic names KILIMWENGU and ANTARBUDAYA standing for "International" in Swahili
and Indonesian respectively. NICHELIM was a smart guess (I carefully looked
through Webster’s and Le Robert in order to compare the meanings of NICHE with
that in the Russian language), but I had to reject it too with a heavy heart
due to its low potential to grow internationally, implying a relatively small
space for a big guy like me (kidding, of course, but I had other reasons as
well). KILIMWENGU could have been another good choice with W being the
reflection of M if written underneath, or the Chinese 稳固 (wěngù) meaning "firm", "stable" and "reliable",
but I reckoned it would be just too hard to remember. ANTARBUDAYA seems to be a huge problem for Westerners.
Finally, I had to choose between
INTERCULTURALIM and MULTICULTURALIM, a difficult choice forcing me to study the
differences between "interculturaliSm" becoming more popular in Quebec and "multiculturaliSm"
having utterly failed in Germany last year. As the latter can refer to a person
and has several other advantages (symmetry, more matches on Google, even passed
the Feng Shui test!), it won the contest and became the official website name.
On another note, I’ve just come back
from the UNESCO workshop on Open
Educational Resources and Intellectual Property Rights, where I had a small
conversation in Chinese with a professor of Renmin University of China. The
last day of spring is over.
P.S. Happy birthday, Mr. Clint Eastwood…