Monday, February 18, 2013

Видеорегистратор - Dashboard Camera. (New Russian)

Hidden in this detailed report about the Russian meteorite is a language gem: dashboard camera. In Russian it's called видеорегистратор, pronounced vEE-dee-oh-reh-ghee-strAH-tohr. It is, for many practical purposes, a video registrar, as this passage from the AP report explains:
Social media was flooded with video from the many dashboard cameras that Russians mount in their cars, in case of pressure from corrupt traffic police or a dispute after an accident.
While Tetradki couldn't find statistics on how many Russian cars are equipped with videoregistrators, reports suggest that they are installed en-masse and widely used. They should be really hailed as a tool of democracy and an evidence of a civic society emerging in Russia. Militant activists from the Blue Buckets movement ("Синие ведерки", wikipedia, in English, and lurkmore, in Russian, about them) have used footage from videoregistrators to prove abuse and arrogance of the high and mighty as they drive through red light, on the opposite lane and do spectacular u-turns in the middle of busy roads endangering the lives of ordinary citizens.

This is not the kind of word you'd quickly find in a Russian-English dictionary.

Here is a blood-curling video from the Blue Bucket repertoire, 2011. The chauffeur of a government Mercedes threatens to shoot a driver in front of him, if he doesn't let him pass. 'Do you want me to shoot you through the head, punk?' he shouts over the tanoy before speeding off. The scene, captured on videoregistrator, went viral on the Russian internet:

Update: In this article on Damon Lavrinc goes into more details about videoregistrators and the meteor. The article includes a number of videos of the meteor and of Russian road accidents.
And Languagehat discusses the expletives that Russians use when cars crash or meteors fall from the sky. Languagehat's post contains more exciting links.

ead more here:


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