“Linguistic diversity is an added value and all levels of institutions, from the European, to State regional and local level, must ensure that it is actively promoted. The NPLD plays a key role in this endeavor and the European Roadmap for Linguistic Diversity is the NPLD’s tangible contribution to the promotion of all the languages of Europe”. These were the opening words of Ms. Cristina Uriarte, Minister for Culture, and Language Policy in the Basque Country at NPLD’s General Assembly in Bilbao.
Over two days, the members of the NPLD have gathered in Bilbao to discuss the future lines of action and the NPLD strategy over the next years. Priority will be given to the development of the NPLD’s Roadmap for Linguistic Diversity and its different lines of action, namely the importance of languages – international, national, regional, local and migrant languages – for the economy, for immigrant integration, social cohesion – as well as to work in collaboration with the different European Institutions and with the main stakeholders at a European level in the promotion of linguistic diversity.
The main theme of this year’s General Conference has been media and social media in minority languages. The Chair of NPLD and Vice-minister for Language Policy, Patxi Baztarrika, gave an overview of the current situation of the vitality of Basque in the social media and gave some figures on the presence of the Basque language in the main social media today: 245,841 articles on Wikipedia (31st place of all world languages); Basque occupies the 33rd position of all the languages of Twitter and is widely present on Facebook, Google and other social media and Web Services such as Firefox, Wordpress, Moodle, etc.).
In the press release given by the NPLD Chair, Patxi Baztarrika, it was pointed out that linguistic diversity must go beyond the current economic conception and must be part of the European construction. “Europe cannot be built unless it takes its languages, all of its languages into account” – stated Baztarrika.