Is this standard just in English?

Right now, the standard is available in English and French. However, the standard is not just for English. It’s language neutral. The ISO working group that developed the standard has representatives from 25 countries speaking 19 languages. So the standard works in most languages and across all sectors.

The guidance in the standard includes many plain language practices that are not language-related, such as focusing on what readers need to know, using a logical sequence, and using techniques to organize and design a document. 

The guidance that relates to language is high level, so it’s not specific to any one language. For example, the standard talks about using culturally relevant language, using words that your readers know, and using clear sentences

You can read more about this in our fact sheet called Language neutral: the international plain language standard is not just for English

Can I get the standard in my language?

Some countries will localize the standard. Localizing means translating the standard for your language or country. It can also mean making additions to the standard to reflect local needs. For example, a country may want to add more detailed aspects of a specific language, such as grammar preferences that improve clarity.

The ISO plain language standard is language neutral. It is written in a way that makes it applicable to most languages and all sectors. So even if you use the English version, it will generally work for your language.

Is this the same as Simplified Technical English?

The ISO plain language standard is not related to the ASD-100 Simplified Technical English standard.  ASD-100 Simplified Technical English is for preparing technical documentation in a controlled language, to help second-language speakers of English to unambiguously understand technical manuals written in English.

The plain language standard is not language specific. Unlike ASD-100, it is not written for English only. It can be applied to most, if not all, languages. It’s also not just for technical materials. It can be used in all sectors. The principles of plain language can also be applied for documents that are drafted using controlled languages.

So the plain language standard is more of an overarching standard.

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