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Why do YOU translate into a non-native language?
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jyuan_us  Identity Verified
Estados Unidos
Local time: 10:15
Membro (2005)
inglês para chinês
+ ...
With the Chinese to English pair Apr 7

Some government agencies, at least in the US, hire translators whose native tongue is Chinese to work in-house as Chinese to English translators.

A lot of courts in the US (if not most of them) use documents translated by translators native in Chinese in handling cases brought to/before them.

Some businesses in the US signed contracts and agreements translated into English by translators native in Chinese without spending time polishing them.

In the docume
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Some government agencies, at least in the US, hire translators whose native tongue is Chinese to work in-house as Chinese to English translators.

A lot of courts in the US (if not most of them) use documents translated by translators native in Chinese in handling cases brought to/before them.

Some businesses in the US signed contracts and agreements translated into English by translators native in Chinese without spending time polishing them.

In the documentations of some Chinese companies listed in the stock exchanges, you can see quite a lot of documents translated by translators native in Chinese.

Non-native translators could do better when translating certain types of documents. Medical records, certificates, financial statements, etc. are just a few examples.

Quite contrary to the consensus, some agencies use non-native speakers to proofread works done by native speakers. I think there is a point in doing so.

In legal and medical translations, probably most of the jobs out there are being done by non-natives.

Marketing documents, user manuals, and documents used to guide manufacturing activities, etc., should probably be translated by translators native in the target language.

[Edited at 2021-04-07 23:59 GMT]
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Mario Cerutti  Identity Verified
Japão
Local time: 23:15
Membro
italiano para japonês
+ ...
Yes, but... Apr 12

jyuan_us wrote:
Quite contrary to the consensus, some agencies use non-native speakers to proofread works done by native speakers. I think there is a point in doing so.

There are certainly cases in which this makes sense, provided however that the original translator (native speaker of the target language) gets involved in the process.

Unfortunately, many non-native language reviewers are so presumptuous as to correct even the writing style when they are patently unable to do so correctly. I see this happening too many times with Japanese translation companies.


Christine Andersen
Gerard Barry
 

Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Dinamarca
Local time: 16:15
Membro (2003)
dinamarquês para inglês
+ ...
It can certainly cause trouble... Apr 12

Mario Cerutti wrote:

jyuan_us wrote:
Quite contrary to the consensus, some agencies use non-native speakers to proofread works done by native speakers. I think there is a point in doing so.

There are certainly cases in which this makes sense, provided however that the original translator (native speaker of the target language) gets involved in the process.

Unfortunately, many non-native language reviewers are so presumptuous as to correct even the writing style when they are patently unable to do so correctly. I see this happening too many times with Japanese translation companies.


This can cause trouble! There must be a definite agreement on what the proofreader may change, and what must be left alone! Terminology and obvious misunderstandings must be commented on, but style and synonyms should be approached with extreme caution.
I have seen collocations ruined by non-native proofreaders.

Smooth, readable style is important, because readers can easily be distracted! Every morning my husband checks through the newspaper and comments on the style of the articles - and often it is quite difficult to remember what they were actually about! But there was a spelling mistake, a machine translated passage from Reuters, and some awkward syntax, those are there every day like the weather forecast.

I have occasionally worked with a source-language native colleagues on projects where we have proofread each other's work to coordinate style etc. One was a book, when there was not time for me to translate the whole job, and my colleague translated some of the more technical chapters. The final result was OK, but there were occasions when I rewrote a sentence several times, because I knew he would change it! The Danish word for ´however´ (dog) does not work in the same way, and can be used as a conjunction, unlike ´however´.
I have several ways of getting round it, depending on context, but he disliked some of them!

There were other examples. Sometimes end clients have asked a non-native to proofread translations from an agency I work with, to make sure they fit in with the rest of the client´s marketing, or whatever. The proofreader makes a number of changes, and then complains to the agency.
I have been asked to explain why the changes are wrong. Again, collocations and fixed expressions come up in that kind of situation.

I have learnt a lot of English from working with Danish colleagues - it is not enough for the native just to ´play it by ear´! It is necessary to study the language as a linguist and be conscious of why one expression is correct and another is misplaced, if not strictly incorrect.
This is especially true of English, where there are so many varieties, but it applies to all languages.

Mixing styles can turn a good translation into a dog´s dinner. (Or do you call that a dog´s breakfast where you come from?)
Etc.

Translation, revision, editing and proofreading are minefields!


 

LIZ LI  Identity Verified
China
Local time: 22:15
Membro (2008)
francês para chinês
+ ...
Pictograph Apr 13

Mario Cerutti wrote:

I see this happening too many times with Japanese translation companies.



Not only Japanese LSPs, but also the CCJK market as a whole.
And I'm suspecting target languages like Arabic, Hebrew are right in the row.

I'd love to share a subtitling project that I used to work on.
It was a documentary about artisanship with different themes of each episode.
I translated it from Chinese simplified into French at first place, and passed it to another French translator for proofreading, or post-editing by definition.
The client then specifically asked me for a second proofreading because the suject is cultural sensitive and she wanted everything to be perfectly in line with the source.
And there was one episode about an artisan craftman in Tibet, during which a phrase caught my attention: 生死长夜 (litterally "life, death, long nights").
My previous translation was "la vie, la mort et la réincarnation", as according to my research on Internet, "long nights" was a metaphor to reincarnation, and you can easily understand why by putting all these elements with craftmanship, Tibet, religion, beliefs, Tripitaka...
The French proofreader remplaced the word "reincarnation" with "long nights" as its denotation suggested... And as you can see that it was a mistake.
Without the second proofreading by a non-native translator, the French version of this documentary may have came out with missing connotations like this one.


[Edited at 2021-04-13 03:39 GMT]


Christine Andersen
 
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