Translit

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Translit is a method of encoding Cyrillic letters with Latin ones. The term is derived from transliteration, the system of replacing letters of one alphabet with letters of another.

The translit system arose when Russian speakers first needed to write their language on computers that did not support the Cyrillic script. There is evidence of past translit use in international telegraphic communications.[citation needed] Translit found its way into web forums, chats, messengers, emails, MMORPGs and other network games. Some Cyrillic web sites had a translit version for cases of encoding problems.

As computer and network technologies developed support for the Cyrillic script, translit fell into disrepute. Sometimes translit users were ignored or even banned in Cyrillic-using communities.

Translit received its last development impulse with the increasing availability of mobile phones in Cyrillic-using countries. At first, the situation was the same as with computers; neither mobile phones nor mobile network operators supported Cyrillic. Although mobile phone technology now supports Unicode including all variants of Cyrillic alphabets, a single SMS in Unicode is limited to 70 characters, whereas a Latinate SMS can have up to 160 characters. If text exceeds single SMS maximum characters it is split into multiple SMS's and their amount determines the total cost[citation needed], because of that translit SMS's are cheaper and more commonly used.

Common transliterations in translit
LettertransliterationLettertransliterationLettertransliteration
аaкk, cчch, č, Ψ, 4
бb, 6лl, Jl, Λшsch, sh, š, w, Ψ, 6
вv, wмmщsh, shch, sch,
šč, shh, w
гg, Γ, sнn
дd, Δ, gоoъ', y, j, '', #,
or absent
еe, ye, je, ieпp, Π, n
ёyo, jo, io, eрrыy, i, q, bl
жzh, ž, j, z, g, *, >|<сsь', y, j, b
or absent
зz, 3тt, m
иi, uуu, yэe, e', eh
йy, j, i, u,
or absent;
ий → iy, ый → yy;
-ий/ый → i, y
фf, Φ
хh, kh, xюyu, ju, iu, u
цc, z, ts, tc, uяya, ja, ia, ea, a, q, 9, 9I

Sometimes «y», «yu», «yo», «ye», «ya» serve as transliteration for «й», «ю», «ё», «е», «я».

Lately a more aggressive form of translit appeared, usually associated with teens new to the web and neglecting its rules. Its identifying characteristic is the use of numbers to substitute some of the letters. For example, 4 reads as "ch" and is used to translit letter "ч", from the transliteration of the word "four" in Russian ("Chetyre", четыре), or, arguably, the appearance of the letter similar to that of four in Arabic numerals. Also, a number can substitute its whole name as part of a word: "sov7" for "sovsem" ("completely") or "posmo3" for "posmotri" ("have a look", imperative).

Common abbreviations for numerals
NumberUsual transliterationOriginal word for it in TranslitOriginal word in Russian
1ododinодин
2dvdvaдва
3trtriтри
4chchetyreчетыре
5ppyat'пять
6shshest'шесть
7ssem'семь
8vovosem'восемь
9dtdevyat'девять

Such translit is often so distorted that native speakers have trouble reading it. The use of translit is prohibited on many Internet forums.[1]

Russia and other former Soviet republics adopted the ISO 9 transliteration standard for official use (under the designation 7.79-2000), replacing the old Soviet GOST 16876-71.

Translit in Bulgaria[edit]

A modified version of Translit is used widely on the Internet in Bulgaria. It is similar to Russian translit, except for the following differences:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ search for "Правила форума: транслит запрещен", (e.g, forum rules: translit is prohibited)

External links[edit]