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Is It Turin or Torino? February 14, 2006

Posted by Binford in Sports.
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So where the heck are the Olympics being held?  Turin or Torino? 

The head of the Olympic organizing committee weighed in Monday on the debate over the name of the host city.

Torino is the Italian name of the city, while Turin is the common English version. NBC calls it Torino, while The Associated Press and most English-language media use Turin.

Valentino Castellani, chief of the TOROC organizing committee, said it was decided years ago with NBC to “give an Italian identity” to the games.

“We chose to give a strong visibility to the Italian word the Torino Games,” he said.

But Castellani said he doesn’t mind if the media use the English version.

“It’s a game,” he said. “We are not offended if you call us Turin. But the brand of the games is Torino 2006.”

Castellani said as a child he referred to New York as “Nuovo York.”

“Now we all say New York,” he said. “I would like that after these games people remember Turin as Torino.”

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So I guess it’s a language thing.  I wonder if we’ll have a similar problem when the Vancouver games rolls around in 2010.  Are people going to say Vancouver or Whistler?

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Comments»

1. Reagan - February 15, 2006

This is entirely a language thing. Having learned Japanese I can attest to that.

I’m going to give you a reverse example so you can see the parallel.

Let’s take the city of Vancouver. Just the city, not the olympic games, which are officially called “Vancouver 2010.”

In English we say “Vancouver.”

In Japanese, it is called, “Ban-kuu-baa.”

So do you think Japanese are going to say, “What should we call the games? Ban-kuu-baa 2010??” Pretty silly.

When referring to the city, people should refer to it in the natural language of their home country, therefore to Canadians (who speak either English or French, Vancouver is Vancouver, “Torino” is Turin.

When referring to the games themselves, people should see that the games are “branded” like Castellani says, above, so “Vancouver 2010” or “Torino 2006.”

But we shouldn’t say, “I’m flying to Torino tomorrow.” That’s like saying, “I’m flying to Roma tomorrow” since Roma is Rome in English.

NBC is being ridiculous by essentially “renaming” Turin. If they do that, they should start calling Rome, “Roma.” It’s their way of trying to be different, but looking like idiots in the process.

2. ertyuykiulo - August 9, 2006

Here are some links that I believe will be interested


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