Arabic is Stable!
not speaking it is something, not understanding it is something else. You're definitely not going to put 3 or 4 courses under Arabic just for the satisfaction of dialects. It is one Arabic and it is taught in schools here so everyone is supposed to understand it (and we use it in emails and in workplaces for official uses besides the media). Standard Arabic is the gate to the other dialects and it can get you through. Unless one is dealing with illiterate people; that's a different story completely.
Well, I'm checking my above comments but I didn't mention anything about the course changing. Anyway, just to answer: When this course started, I remember, they used the Egyptian flag for it. Apparently, the plan was to teach the Egyptian dialect and not the standard Arabic. Then when the course was officially released in its beta version, the flag changed to the Arabic league flag. Not sure about the content of the course though, because I didn't participate in the forum and questions of this course till later when the beta version was released and I can see now that it is a hybrid somewhat of standard Arabic and dialectical Arabic from Egypt and the Levant with marginalizing the grammar. I think I can call this kind of Arabic: The Traveler's Arabic; Something to get you going.
Just like all other Duolingo courses, Duolingo in itself is not sufficient to learn a language; Other steps are required from the user if the user is planning to really learn the language.
بارك الله فيك
Oh I thought that as AngiLea2 said, "Cause in the Arabic world nobody speak that Arabic (Duolingo)!" and I assumed that she talked about Standard Grammar in Duolingo and preferred Dialects.
Then you said, "Standard Grammar is the gate...", I thought you defended previous Arabic Duolingo course.
So, I thought that: once Duolingo was Standard Grammar and now it's Dialect reformed.
Yeah, I have read your "The Traveler's Arabic" comment :)
By the way, are other languages also blending Standard and Slangs? Until now, I still didn't find the "hybrid" issue except in Arabic.
Yeh I was pointing that the standard is the basic one.
As for other languages I really don't know. Other languages as I see it, don't have the issue of the Arabic language. Arabic is standardized with Quran; There are dialects before in archaic times and there were dialects when Quran was revealed, but what is deemed to be the standard form is the Arabic of Quraysh (Makkah) since Quran is revealed in that Arabic. The dialects of modern times are not related to the dialects of the old times (well, some traces still live but the two concepts are different).
Many languages do go reforms from time to time; Reforms in their writing system mainly to accommodate for the changes in the spoken word or other events. Language is seen mostly as a developing entity of a culture. However, the case with Arabic does not go along this model for its religious attachment. So where you might find the slang is somewhat in line with the standard in many languages (somehow, not completely), this gap between the two is wider and very different in Arabic.