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RE: Israeli web site localization

From: Daniel Goldschmidt <pepper@012.net.il>
Date: Tue, 31 Aug 2004 10:30:33 +0200
To: <www-international@w3.org>
Message-Id: <20040831072901.LMHU445.fep15@Blue>
Dear Ryan,


Localizing a Website for Israel is not a simple task: Apart from the
technical issues (Hebrew and Arabic are Bi-DI languages) there are major
cultural issues. Some examples:


First, in Israel there are many large communities and minorities: Is your
website is aim only to the Hebrew speaking audience or also to the Arabic
speaking audience? BTW, in the last 15 years about 1 million new immigrants
arrived from Russia. You should consider them too.


Second, the working week is from Sunday to Thursday (and not from Monday to
Friday). Saturday is the Shabbat day, the day of rest (you can find website
which are owned by religious that are shutdown during Saturday!).


Third, you should be aware of the Jewish calendar, which is based on the
moon and not on the sun (such as the Gregorian calendar), and you should
also be aware to the Jewish holidays.


Fourth, you should also be aware to the political fragility: For example, if
you are going to use a geographical map (even simple one), which map should
you use? You can't use a map where the Golan height, the West Bank and Gaza
strip are not part of Israel. On the other end, not using such maps might
cause problem with users outside Israel. The same with naming of cities:
some cities have a Jewish name and also an Arab (Palestinian) name. Be
careful what name to use, depending your audience. 



Not simple.I know.


Those are simple examples of these localization problems.


For more information you can contact me directly.


wish happy new year (the Jewish new year is in two weeks!),





Daniel Goldschmidt

Software Internationalization Solutions


Mobile: +972-54-424-2580

Fax: +972-50-896-2858

 <http://www.i18nworld.com> www.i18nworld.com

"Sure UNIX is user-friendly, It's just picky about who its friends are!"

"La critique est facile, mais l'art est difficile."



I am a business graduate student participating in a group project that

addresses the localization of websites for Israel.  We are not specifically

looking for technical information, but cultural, religious, or any other

aspects that would be needed to localize an English site for Israel.  Any

thoughts would be appreciated.


Ryan Regal

University of South Florida




Received on Tuesday, 31 August 2004 07:31:14 UTC

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