Esperanto cultureEsperanto is often used to access an international culture. There are over 25,000 Esperanto books (originals and translations) as well as over a hundred regularly distributed Esperanto magazines. Many Esperanto speakers use the language for free travel throughout the world using the Pasporta Servo. Others like the idea of having pen pals in many countries around the world using services like the Esperanto Pen Pal Service.
Every year, hundreds of new titles are published in Esperanto along with music. Also, many Esperanto newspapers and magazines exist. There are full-time broadcasts in Esperanto via the radio-esperanto website; additionally there are radio broadcasts in Esperanto by various stations at certain times of day in certain regions (see AERA). There even exist some Esperanto films. As of July 2003, the Esperanto wiki lists 14 films and 3 short films, including Incubus starring William Shatner.
Additionally, aspects of Esperanto influenced the fictional language Newspeak in George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four, e.g. the Newspeak construction doubleplusungood reflects the Esperanto construction malbonega. This is unlikely to be coincidental, as Orwell had previously spent time living in an Esperanto-speaking home with Eugene Lanti of the Esperanto-based organization Sennacieca Asocio Tutmonda.
In 2001, the Universal Esperanto Association (Universala Esperanto-Asocio) had members in 119 countries of the world. Every year, 1500-3000 Esperanto speakers meet for the Universal Congress of Esperanto (Universala Kongreso).
Esperanto culture has a special word, krokodili (from the word meaning crocodile, coming from the fact that crocodiles have a small brain and a big mouth), to describe what is considered the inappropriate use of national languages at Esperanto meetings. "Crocodiling" is considered rude because it excludes people from a conversation when they all could be speaking Esperanto instead. It is usually however accepted from beginners of the language since the essential goal of Esperanto is improving international communication.
The poem La Espero is generally considered to be the Esperanto anthem. It speaks of the achievement of world peace, "sacred harmony" and "eternal blessing" on the basis of a neutral language. Nonetheless Esperantists may or may not agree whether the stated benefits could in fact be achieved in this way. At the first Esperanto congress, in Boulogne-sur-Mer in 1905, a declaration was made which defined an Esperantist merely as one who knows and uses the language "regardless of what kind of aims he uses it for", and which also specifically declared any ideal beyond the spread of the language itself to be a private matter for the individual speaker.