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News Release 06-103

NSF, NEH Boost Efforts to Make Digital Records of Dying Languages

More than half of 7,000 current languages at risk of disappearing

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More than half the world's 7,000 human languages are headed for oblivion.

Globalization is endangering languages, as people prefer to conduct business and communicate in widely used tongues like English, Chinese and Hindi. Public education, the Internet and print and television media also speed the rate of language loss.

Credit: Nicolle Rager Fuller, National Science Foundation