Saturday, 25 January 2014

How the Gaelic "revival" works vol. I: the Government

Dr Allan's Ministry of Misinformation

  • 26th Sept 2013: Scotland's Census results show that the number of Gaelic speakers has fallen from  58,700 in 2001 to 57,375 in 2011, a decline of 1,325.

  • The reduction between 1991 and 2001 was 7,300 speakers.

  • 11th Oct 2013: Alasdair Allan, Minister for Scotland's Languages, releases a widely-reported press release stating that 

"This year we have proof that our work is making a difference with the 2011 census showing the drop in the number of Gaelic speakers has gone from more than 16,000 between 1991 and 2001 to less than 900 between 2001 and 2011". 
Spot the terminological inexactitude!

  • 24th Oct 2013: Gilleasbuig Aotrom sends e-mail to Government helpfully pointing out that Dr. Allan's figures and reality share only a slight resemblance.

  • (Various e-mails ensue)

  • 10th Jan 2014: Scottish Government quietly amend the press release they originally published on 11th October the previous year. No announcement is made.

Misinformation? What misinformation!?


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