WINNIPEG – In a result that sent shockwaves throughout the linguistics olympiad community, Canada officially expressed their wish to leave NACLO early in December, with 52% voting to create a sovereign English OLCLO. The dust has since settled on this time-defining vote and we are now in a position to assess the impact Canadieu will have on the future of Canada’s involvement in the IOL as a whole.
CHISINAU – As the saying goes, pride comes before a fall. Never has this quip been more relevant than with the ongoing situation where infamous jury member, Ksenia Gilyarova, faces detainment in Chisinau airport on her way to the 15th edition of the International Linguistics Olympiad in Dublin, where she was set to win her fifth Solvers’ Choice award. Guess that’s karma for you.
Travel problems are not new to IOL. Just this year, the Taiwanese team has been delayed by a “typhoon” and the Armenian team decided they wouldn’t even bother trying to come. In Mysore 2016, major disruption was caused when the people of Bangalore staged a strike after seeing the farce that was that year’s IOL Jeopardy. This meant that coaches conveniently had to leave up to 9 hours before they were scheduled to, greatly diminishing the number of people that needed to be catered for the following morning.
The exact causes for Gilyarova’s delay are not yet known, but word is that the Moldovan authorities were tipped off by an anonymous source who had been seen writing Moldovan and was hoping to guarantee the prestigious 15th Solvers’ Choice award for himself. This just goes to show: with great success comes a target on your back and an angrily worded email to the Chisinau airport authorities.
BOROVETS – The 15th International Olympiad in Linguistics is going to kick off in Dublin in a couple of days time so we here at LNNO wanted to answer some frequent questions asked (FQA) for first-time IOLers. It can be a very daunting process when you first arrive, so take a look at this guide and you’ll settle in much quicker!
“So, What’s the Deal With The Isle Of Man?”
Good question! If you ask the Manx team, their responses range from “It’s not part of the UK stop asking us that” to “I don’t fucking know either”. If you ask someone from the UK, they’ll say they’re “imposters”. Some might argue it’s a hoax, like Bielefeld. I guess the jury’s still out on this one!
MANCHESTER – No-one likes it when what they thought was just a nightmare turns out to be reality. But it was this very experience that happened this morning to 31-year-old Jerry Manndren who woke up under the impression that the 2013 IOL problem Telepathy was just a figment of his anxiety-fueled dreams.
“It’s amazing what my brain thinks up sometimes. Like, imagine if one of the well-respected IOL problem setters had actually written a problem which involved recognising the difference between long and short words.
“The funniest thing is that in my dream, there was a separate British English version of the problem where all the words were ‘translated’ from American English. Just imagine!”
After 10 solid minutes of explaining the ridiculous nature of the problem, Jerry sighed that he was just relieved that the IOL problem setters had more sense than his subconscious, at which point he was informed of the problem’s existence.
His response cannot be published on a safe-for-work website such as LNNO but, needless to say, the truth hit him like an airplane.
The future of the International Linguistics Olympiad appears to be in, er, jeopardy after Sony Pictures Television filed a copyright infringement claim against the IOL Committee over the unlawful use of the Jeopardy! brand at the most recent competition.
It is alleged that one Dragomir Radev of the USA did not seek the appropriate permissions to produce, quite frankly, a carbon copy of the popular quiz show, a situation which Sony tolerated until recent allegations of corruption in the 2016 edition threatened to bring the brand into disrepute.
PORT MORESBY – After the announcement of the countries participating in IOL in Dublin, there was relief visible on the faces of the IOL Problem Committee, who had been waiting in dread at the possibility of a team from Africa going to the competition. “Thank fucking God,” said Ksenia Gilyarova, wiping her sweat-dripped brow with a scrap of cretonne ripped from a tablecloth. “We would have had to change all 5 questions. Obviously, we can’t reveal any information about what languages they’re on, but they’re all spoken by, like, millions of people. If we had a team from Africa participate, there’s actually a surprisingly high chance they would know at least some of the language. I think one of the languages this year has something like 5 million speakers, which you’d think would make the problem more susceptible to prior knowledge.”
DUBLIN – After 14 years of translating linguistics olympiads into as many languages as requested by participants, the IOL problem committee has announced their decision to get rid of the pesky translation thing once and for all. “In 2003, we only had 6 countries to think about and most of them already had representatives in the jury anyway so it wasn’t that big of a deal. But recently, with 30 countries participating every year, and with multiple languages per country (I mean, Bengali? Really?), we’re really starting to run thin. Some guy from the UK asked us to write it in Basque. I mean, for God’s sake, who can be fucked to do that,” Boris Iomdin told the press in a public statement, admitting that they tried to get Ivan Derzhanski to translate the papers, but on further inspection, they realised that in each of the languages he had translated, he had replaced the traditional 5 problem format with a single problem consisting of a list of chess variants translated into Burushaski that the contestants were expected to spend all 6 hours solving.