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This article is about web discussion forums, a multi-authored sub-format of digital discourse which, predating what we now label as ‘social media’ (Leppänen et al.  Web forums (‘bulletin boards’, ‘message boards’) may involve notable manifestations of multilingualism (Androutsopoulos 2007; Hinrichs 2006; Kytölä 2013); and such is indeed the case for the largest Finnish football discussion forums on the Web, ), which can be analytically conceived of as layered contact zones for several languages, varieties, styles and genres (Kytölä 2012a, 2012b, 2013; Kytölä & Androutsopoulos 2012).
Unlike the other affordances (Kytölä 2013), signatures are visible only to registered members and only after a deliberate ‘opt-in’ change of one’s personal settings, rendering them in this empirical case slightly more peripheral than the ubiquitous pseudonyms.
However, I will also use the more general and widespread term ‘multilingual(ism)’, both to refer to the source literature and, as part of the exercise at hand, also to measure the number of items or occurrences in each variety (but see my reflection and critique on these issues below).