Translation Misconceptions

By Slava
Aug 28, 2009 · 3 min
Many people underestimate the art of translation, and they usually aren't the ones involved in the industry in the first place; that is, they're neither a part of freelance translation services nor professional translation agencies offering both machine and human translation features. More often than not, they have no idea how the translation process really works. To those critics and companies who take the art and science of translation far too lightly, they need to realize that it's an intricate practice and viable business that should be given its due respect so that they'll avoid poor, laughable output.Three Common MisconceptionsWhether you're seeking to penetrate an international market using the Internet and several translation services or interpret correspondences with foreign businessmen using a professional translation firm, you must first remember and avoid the following fallacies regarding translation:
  • Knowing a foreign language is enough to become a translator: It's one of the most widespread misconceptions about translation out there, and it's probably the most dangerous one to boot. Many would-be translators learned the erroneousness of this belief the hard way. Being able to write, speak, and read a second language does not give someone the carte blanche to do translation jobs. First and foremost, as a translator, you must have a deep comprehension and boundless knowledge of your target market's mother tongue and your own vernacular. Translation work isn't just an ordinary job; it's an expertise wherein only the best of the best are primed to handle it. You must not only know how to write, but you must also know how to write in a professional manner. You must not only know how to translate, you must have a command of the nuances of two languages. It's a job reserved for specialists who know and appreciate the culture behind a given dialect.
  • Translation is an easy process: No, it's not. Far from it, even. Because only specialists are reserved to learn this complex craft, then of course the process of translation is a grueling, intricate, and arduous task. Merely trying to focus on two different languages is already tiring enough to the brain.Peop le aren't naturally attuned to switch from one language to another; it's something that has to be learned, because you're forced to regularly swap mind frames in order to produce quality translation results. The end product must not only convey the context of the source text in order to work, but should also be adapted to the culture of the target language. That entails focusing on and adapting intention, tone, figures of speech, phrases, and the like all at the same time.
  • Translations can be done by computer: Don't rely solely on a computer to do your translation tasks for you; it'll do more harm than good. Human translation is still the best approach when it comes to professional translation work. The reason behind this is because machines don't comprehend language the same way humans do—they have no concept of what slang, reading between the lines, figures of speech, and sarcasm are, so they're best left translating one-dimensional, elementary-level sentences and phrases instead of actual literature or even a simple phone conversation.

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Oct 3, 2016 · 3 min

The translation industry is a relatively small one but it’s also a highly competitive one. Basically, do your research on a translation agency prior to making initial contact and it will certainly pay off; perhaps not immediately because there may not be any work available at the time, so just be patient. Your application must stand out above the rest, and by following these simple steps you should have no problem whatsoever in achieving your translation goals.