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The language wall in IN's get-together events (Istanbul)


Some InterNations members - old and new - are complaining that they hardly get to know other members (specifically those with Turkish as their mother tongue) during get-togethers because the Turks carry on in that language, oblivious to non-Turks present.

I myself have seen this happening and I think it is not conducive to fostering the kind of global connection that InterNations is supposedly about. It's no wonder that you find some people seemingly in a daze or outright lost in these events.

What's up with this? I know that we are in Turkey and we love being in Turkey but the IN get-together is the ONE time in a month that geographical and PERSONAL borders are supposed to disappear in pursuit of the EXPAT community spirit. In a room-full of people one can hardly feel belonging to that community when the room is sharply divided between the TURKS and the NON-TURKS with a linguistic wall that's difficult for most of the latter to tear down.

I'm not trying to dissuade anyone from practicing their Turkish but shouldn't it be the Turks wanting to improve another language in an occasion meant to bring together people from various countries? The last time I checked, the language of communication in InterNations is supposed to be English. For that matter, InterNations is supposed to be made up of expats NOT locals who have never lived outside of Turkey and therefore have limited capabilities for other languages. Now, look around you or check the guest list and you find more than half do NOT qualify to be called EXPATS.

If InterNations has SUDDENLY become just a regular NETWORKING club for EVERYONE, then let's not pretend otherwise. Just say so. For that matter, let's do away with the "by invitation requirement". It has become a BIG joke.

For the next get-together, I think everyone should have a name card that says,
"Hi! I'm _____ . I speak English. And I'd love to talk to you and get to know you".


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