Toki Pona/Demographic information
Name of LanguageEdit
The language is called "toki pona" which roughly means "good speech." It is abbreviated as tp, and is usually written in lower case according to the conventions of the language.
The people who use Toki Pona will be called users, since they generally don't speak it, but instead write it. At the moment, there is no fictional culture of fictional Tokiponans. Even if one is proposed, it's outside the scope of this document. Instead, we will be discussing the characteristics of the real life people that are using Toki Pona.
The language is used by constructed language fans, almost entirely in written messages across the internet. These fans are geographically spread across North and South America, Europe, Russia, Australia, Malaysia and Japan. Of these, Canada, the US and East and West Europe are most heavily represented. There is a notable lack of Toki Pona users in China, South East Asia and Africa.
Toki Pona is a relatively new language created in 2001. It did not evolve from any previous language, except for the possible influence of the mother tongue of the users.
Toki Pona has been referenced in a few journals. Because the language is small and well developed, a few researchers have used it instead of creating a language of their own.
The sociolinguistic situationEdit
Toki Pona is an online community, so it is lacking most of the features one would expect of naturally created creole or pidgin languages, that is, a new language based on a mixture of other languages. The speakers don't share a common culture outside of an interest in languages, new languages and participation in online communities. Unlike a creole, this language is not a mix of the speakers languages and there is nothing that remotely looks like the creole situation, where slaves or workers from many lands have to work together for a master or employer that speaks yet another language. Everyone using Toki Pona is voluntarily using it. Unlike a pidgin, this isn't a language born of any desperate need to communicate. Toki Pona can be spoken well or poorly. It has many more rules than a pidgin.
The user community is small enough that one can identify characteristics of ideolects, i.e peculiarities of the syntax of one person, but not large enough to identify dialects.