Sex and the internet in Spanish

Here’s a curious little corpse-worm:

Curious for me, because I thought that the arrival in Hispanidad of services provided over TCP/IP and HTTP was divisible into three sociolinguistic phases:

  1. Tech nerds tend to assign masculine gender to this weird new shit, more or less as per Regina Morin, Spanish gender assignment in computer and Internet related loanwords (via Lester Haines). So el internet should predominate.
  2. Language nerds wake up to this and point out that internetinter-net, that netred, and that red is feminine. And through the RAE and other instruments of terror they herd the public in the direction. So la internet should rapidly increase market share vis-à-vis el internet.
  3. National-catholic nerds clamour that Spanish/Catalan/Asturoleonese civilisation will die with grammatical gender, and that an Anglo-Saxon plot involving whores and wheretics is underway.

In fact the Ngram shows that 1990-2008 the ratio la internet:el internet stays roughly the same. Were the tech nerds not writing, or are they just amazingly good at everything?

The RAE is actually pretty moderate: the internet’s gender is ambiguous, but feminine use is recommended.

The debate’s marginal because I think most people regard the internet as a location, either not to be fucked with or whose gender is not of primary interest, and if you prefix the article then you’re a peasant, like people who say la Granada or l’Hospitalet:

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Föcked Translation (413): I posted to a light-hearted blog called Fucked Translation over on Blogger from 2007 to 2016, when I was often in Barcelona. Its original subtitle was "What happens when Spanish institutions and businesses give translation contracts to relatives or to some guy in a bar who once went to London and only charges 0.05€/word." I never actually did much Spanish-English translation (most of my work is from Dutch, French and German) but I was intrigued and amused by the hubristic Spanish belief, then common, that nepotism and quality went hand in hand, and by the nemeses that inevitably followed.

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