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Enough with the fake ‘conlangs’!

This article is still under construction.

While movies have started embracing the quest for authenticity in fictional languages, many music producers who tout such languages have yet to accept that message. It is far too common to encounter a song featuring a language that is a relexification – or worse, a cypher or plain gibberish.

How to find out if a ‘conlang’ is real

As usual, these are just general trends instead of hard-and-fast rules.

Documentation

Perhaps the most straightforward way to check is to consult the documentation for the language – if it is available. Otherwise, you can try asking for documentation; if an actual conlang is used, then the creator of the video probably won’t mind giving some to you. That is, given that they see your comment.

Video title

If you see 架空言語 (‘fictional language’) in the video title, then that’s a sign that you’re encountering something other than a bona fide conlang. 人工言語 (‘constructed language’) is a better sign, though.

Orthography

Using all of the ISO basic Latin alphabet (minus possibly one or two letters) is also a bad sign. Bonus points if the pronunciation of <c> or <q> follows the same rules as any Romance language, or if <x> is pronounced /ks/.

If you see random Cyrillic letters peppered into a Latin orthography, and especially if <Я> isn’t pronounced as anything nearing /ja/, then get the hell out!

Analysis

Finally, if some natlang translation is available, then you can try analysing the lyrics linguistically. Things to watch for:

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Channel Notes
ウルヰ It’s me, kozet!
Калигула Армянская Avoid watch?v=ldITiKzDtuY.
Ritchan Aios-Ciao Not very active in terms of music.
炭酸ソーダ Not very active in general.
Herman Miller <3!
Con WorkShop Publishes multi-conlang covers of songs. Their site isn’t very good, but the music is fine.
John Quijada The one known for Ithkuil.
Lunias Legitleins At least I believe the conlang they use is legitimate.
Luni Vanoneeme AKA Kakis Erl Sax. Very old videos of a very old (~2008) version of Arka. Hasn’t uploaded anything for 8 years.
leviantarka Official Arka channel. Won’t be active again until at least 2025.
minerva scientia Does some conlang stuff.
藤原 安眞 Not many videos.
人工言語・柳霞の文化活動 Not the best quality voice- and video-wise but at least doesn’t pass off sed output as conlangs.
Ikku@人工言語制作者 Videos in Akyou; the language’s orthography looks bad IMO but also legit.
anotterkiro Only one conlang song so far, but promising. Has another channel dedicated to conlangs.
Avlönskt Has some covers in his conlang.

Unrecommended

The channel IDs are listed, converted to fullwidth characters. In case you want to view those channels, prefix https://www.youtube.com/channel/.