Cheap translations

How can you lower your translation costs?

Everybody who has ever needed to translate a document knows that translation costs can be expensive. There are several ways in which you can make your translation cheaper. In this article, we discuss tactics that can help you lower your quote by a good margin. All translation buyers can adhere to the following tips, and cut costs


Format
: The cheapest format is a plain text. If you have resources for formatting your document, email a Word document as formatting will need DTP and costs more. By doing so, you can get the translation done for cheap and then format it the way you want.


Target audience
: Instead of opting to translate your document for a specific audience, you can choose to translate it to reach a broader audience, by translating it to Neutral Spanish. By doing so, you can even pay less for your translation as it takes longer to search for a translators for a specific audience. Care has to be taken to make sure that when translating to Neutral Spanish terms that are easily understood by any Spanish speaker are used.


Certified Translation
: It is highly recommended that you only request for a certified and/or notarized translation only if you have to present the translation to an institution or organization that requires a certified translation as the translation will be more expensive.

Turnaround time: Urgent translations are charged higher. Provide time for the translation to be completed in order to avoid the extra costs charged for an urgent translation.


Volume
: Some agencies provide discounts for high volumes. It is advisable to send all the documents you need for translation when you require a quote or inform the amount of words that you expect to translate.

By following these tips, you can be sure to save a good deal and at the same time get your translation done in an efficient and reliable manner.

spanish-language

Facts about the rapid growth of the Spanish language

Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría, Vice President of Spain, recently recalled the roots and history of the Spanish language. She noted the landmarks and influencers of the language that helped to grow Spanish around the world. Such ventures include the expeditions of Christopher Columbus and the philosophy of writers like Mario Vargas Llosa and Gabriel García Márquez. Through this introduction she outlined fundamental aspects of Spanish that are key to understanding the growth of the language today.

  • Spanish is the first language of 470 million people around the world.
  • Forty-five of these 470 million people do not reside in a country where Spanish is the official language as there are only 21 countries who have Spanish as the official  language.
  • Forty-one million Americans are Spanish native speakers.
  • Spanish is the second most-spoken language in the world and currently Spanish speakers represent 7.9% of the total population. This means that in the next generation one in ten people in the world will speak Spanish.
  • Spanish is the third language most used on the internet, with a total of 8% of users.
  • The use of Spanish in the internet grew more than 1,000% between 2000 and 2013.
  • There are approximately 20-25 million people around the world that study Spanish
  • The number of American university students enrolled in Spanish courses exceeds the total students enrolled in other languages.
  • In 2050, the United States will be the first Spanish-speaking country in the world.
  • An average of 185,000 Spanish books per year are produced throughout Spanish-speaking countries.
translation-conference

Calendar of translation events – April 2016

3-7

International Conference on Interpretation National Association for Interpretation. Wellington, New Zealand.

12

Translating from the Margins: The Challenges, Opportunities and Responsibilities of Working with ‘Under-Represented’ Languages. The London Book Fair. London, UK.

13-15

LocWorld Tokyo. Localization World, Ltd. Tokyo, Japan.

15-16

bp16. Csaba Bán. Prague, Czech Republic.

19-20

TAUS Industry Leader’s Forum. TAUS. Tokyo, Japan.

21

Serge: Open Source Localization Platform from Evernote. The International Multilingual User Group (IMUG). Mountain View, California, USA.

21-22

ND Focus – Elia’s networking days for Executives. Elia (European Language Industry Association). Mallorca, Spain.

11th EUATC International Conference. European Union of Associations of Translation Companies. Budapest, Hungary.

21-24

6th Latin American Translation and Interpreting Congress. Colegio de Traductores Públicos de la Ciudad de Buenos Aires (CTPCBA). Buenos Aires, Argentina.

22-24

AILIA Annual Conference. AILIA Language Industry Association. Montreal, Canada.

28-30

Wordfast Forward 2016. Wordfast. Nice, France.

29-May 1

2016 International Medical Interpreters Conference. International Medical Interpreters Association Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

30

Практический семинар ProZ.com для начинающих переводчиков. Kharkov, UKR.

30-May 1

4th Durham Postgraduate Colloquium in Translation Studies. Durham University. Durham, UK.

What’s the difference between proofreading and editing?

You’ve thought up a spectacular story, your words flow with ease, you’ve finished your body of work, yet the process has just begun. Many people will argue that a written project has many layers. Dominick Dunne, an American writer and investigative journalist, once stated “even if you write it wrong, write and finish your first draft. Only then, when you have a flawed whole, do you know what you have to fix.”

proofreading and editing: differences

The process of fixing a draft is known as editing or proofreading. Although similar, these two terms are not the same. According to the Merriam-Webster, editing is “to prepare something written, filmed or recorded to be published or to make changes, corrections to mistakes, etc.” Whereas proofreading is “to read and correct mistakes in a written or printed piece of writing”.

From the dictionary definition, it is hard to differentiate the two; but there is a key difference.

Editing is going through and making grammatical changes such as grammatical errors and punctuation. Through this process, you are actually making changes physically to adjust the content. Editing takes a deeper look at how info is presented and can happen multiple times throughout the project.

Proofreading, on the other hand, happens towards the end of the process. Proofreading, in regards to the nature of the term, is reading for proof and credibility of the final product. Finding credible and cohesive content at large instead of commenting on minors errors in structure or grammar.

Although these terms are similar, they are not interchangeable. They are both equally crucial in the writing process. Without editing an author runs the risk of publishing a piece of work with errors in structure, tense, tone and grammar. And without proofreading it is possible to miss surface mistakes that were overlooked in the editing process. So make sure you’ve accomplished both steps of the process before your project is truly complete.

 

Is the comma on its way out?

comma use

It’s probably one of the most difficult forms of punctuation to get to grips with and, for some, it’s starting to be more and more unnecessary. The question is, will the comma will eventually die out completely in the future? Let’s take a look at the arguments…

Linguist and Columbia University professor John McWhorter is certainly in favor of putting commas to rest forever. His analysis of the subject falls into two broad categories. Firstly, according to McWhorter, it seems pretty fair to say that there’s no list of definitive rules that explain exactly when and why one should place a comma in a sentence.

William Strunk Jr.’s The Elements of Style is one of the most popular texts for comma use, still in use today. One of the rules laid down in this 100-year-old publication is that commas should “enclose parenthetic expressions” and come “before and or but” when introducing an independent clause.

Even so, as McWhorter quite rightly points out, Strunk was wandering around in a pair of spats when he wrote The Elements of Style and so little of what’s written in the publication needs to have very much to do with how we communicate today in our modern and highly technological society. With that in mind we can move on to the second category of analysis as laid out by McWhorter, that of the use of text messages, tweets and other kinds of conversational-style communications.

There’s simply no need for commas (indeed they take up valuable character space) in tweets. Even top-notch journalists who write for national and international publications choose to tweet without commas. It seems that there isn’t a need for the comma, because the essence of what one’s trying to communicate in 140 characters is conveyed with or without them.

For example, a couple of years back Gmail went down – shocking! – and the entire world began tweeting sarcastic comments about the issue. Many of the snarling remarks came from professional journalists and few of them felt the need to use a comma. They were all more interested in getting their tweet out there into cyberspace for all to read.

An editor at BuzzFeed tweeted “whoa whoa guys I can’t respond to all zero gmails at once.” Writer and biographer Rachel Syme published a joking jibe that read: “I rubbed my genie lamp and wished for one of those Freedom programs that keeps you from email but I wished TOO BIG sorry guys sorry.” And writer Jen Doll brought the entire Gmail nightmare to and end with: “I guess all those losers outside skiing or like at the movies or whatever missed out on this exciting adventure we just had.”

Did you see any commas? Did you need them to understand what you read? No!

This is exactly the point that McWhorter is trying to make when referring to the outdated nature of the comma in our super advanced technological world.

Having said all that, there are obviously a band of comma fanatics out there that continue to worry about what might happen when people start writing sentences like, “Let’s eat grandma” and not, “Let’s eat, grandma”, which are clearly two different things. But unless we all happen to be living in a version of Little Red Riding Hood, it’s highly unlikely that we’ll confuse the first sentence with the second anyway.

Comma fanatics are also worried that we won’t be able to distinguish the difference between style; that we won’t be able to produce content suitable for formal essays and articles as well as tweets and texting. The concern is that we’ll end up having to read articles in the New York Times without commas, but maybe the future’s not going to include long, formal articles in the NYT anyway. Let’s face it, tweets, texts and other digital publications have already started to turn print journalism into a thing of the past.

What do you think? Should the comma stay or should it go?

Language Assistance for LEP Individuals

The term “limited English proficiency” (alternatively “English-language learner” or “English learner”) is used in the United States to refer to a person whose primary language is not English and who has a limited ability to speak, read, write or understand English. There are laws at the federal, state and local levels that protect these individuals’ rights, including access to governmentally funded programs and activities.

One of the most significant laws is Executive Order 13166, signed into law by President Bill Clinton on August 11, 2000. Entitled “Improving Access to Services for Persons with Limited English Proficiency”, the Order requires Federal agencies to examine the services they provide, identify any need for services to persons with limited English proficiency, develop and implement a system to provide these services so that LEP persons have meaningful access to them. It also requires Federal agencies to work to ensure that recipients (agencies, nonprofits and other Federally funded organizations) provide meaningful access to their LEP applicants and beneficiaries. All recipients of federal funds and all federal agencies are thus required by law to take reasonable steps to provide meaningful access to limited English proficient persons. This means that, regardless of a state or local jurisdiction’s official English or “English only” laws, entities receiving Federal funding must comply with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Title VI regulations prohibiting discrimination based on national origin, including those applicable to the provision of federally assisted services to persons with limited English proficiency. Title VI applies to a funding recipient’s entire program or activity, even if only one part of the recipient receives the funding.

LEP - Languages Services

It is crucial to ensure that written materials routinely provided in English also are provided in regularly encountered languages other than English. It is particularly important to make sure that vital documents are translated into the non-English language of LEP groups eligible to be served or likely to be affected by the program or activity. Documents are considered vital if the information they contain is critical for obtaining federal services and/or benefits, or is required by law, e.g., applications, consent and complaint forms, notices of rights and disciplinary action, notices advising LEP persons of the availability of free language assistance, prison rulebooks, written tests that do not assess English language competency, but rather competency for a particular license, job, or skill for which English competency is not required, and letters or notices that require a response from the beneficiary or client.

The Patient Protection Affordable Care Act (also known as ACA or “Obamacare”) includes requirements for insurers and the healthcare industry to provide translation and interpreting services for limited English proficiency (LEP) individuals in order to increase healthcare access for all, and explicitly requires translation of specific documents, including the Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) and the Uniform Glossary. However, translating other documents may be implied; for example, provision of claim and appeal notices most likely must be translated since they are to be presented in a linguistically and culturally appropriate manner. The provision of these documents in plain and translated languages applies to all insurance plans, whether they are bought through an employer or privately.

Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act builds on both Title VI and Executive Order 13166 and furthers protection from discrimination by including any health program or activity any part of which receives Federal financial assistance, including insurance contracts, credit and subsidies. Section 1557 also extends non-discrimination protection to the Health Insurance Exchanges (as well as any other entity or Executive agency that administers a program or activity established under Title 1 of the ACA).

What you need to know about certified translations

certified translation

Translators are often asked to translate official documents, including identity documents, immigration documents, birth or death certificates, wedding licenses, wills, diplomas, transcripts and so on.

They are two key issues to consider before beginning a certificate translation: Translating the information on the certificate itself correctly and what certification process (if any) is to be applied.

In terms of the translation itself, it is important for the translation to match the original to the greatest extent possible, not only in terms of content, but also in terms of form. This is especially important for certified translations, as the person doing the certification must check each item of the translation against the same item on the original document, including (but not limited to) the fax information on the bottom of the page, the initials written in the margins of all the pages, stamps, seals and handwritten notes. A client may request that the translator leave out certain information found on the original. Doing so will make it impossible for the certifier to certify the document which will render it invalid for legal or official use.

The “matching” issue doesn’t stop with ensuring that everything on the original also appears on the translation; it is equally important – no matter how persuasive the client may be – to never add anything to a certificate translation, regardless of how obvious an omission may seem.

So, no skipping anything, no adding anything…and no changing anything, either. You are the translator, and you must translate the words as you understand them, regardless of how insistent your client is that the word “técnico” on his diploma really means “engineer”.

The certification process itself – which grants the legal status of the original to the copy – it varies from country to country. In the U.S., a certified translation is simply a translation accompanied by the source text and a straightforward signed statement (Certificate of Accuracy) in which the translator attests to her ability to translate the material and the accuracy of the document. For extra legal protection, clients will sometimes ask the translator to have a notary public sign and seal the document in witness of the translator’s signature in his presence.

Some countries outside the U.S. have stringent requirements about who may certify a translation; check the laws of the destination country to determine what is required in order for the translation to be accepted as certified.

 

Translating Adult Content

You may have never thought about it, but adult films, websites, magazines, literature, games, comics and packaging for toys and other products don’t translate themselves; someone translates them, and that’s where the adult content translation specialist comes in.

porno-translation

And adult content is a big and potentially profitable niche market to specialize in: according to Forbes, together with internet-related businesses such as websites and pay-per-view movies, traditional porn-related businesses like adult magazines, video sales and rentals and toys and products move billions – some say as much as $14 billion – a year.

Logically, there are translators willing and eager to provide services to such a large potential market; however, those that take that step often run into a problem common to many translators, but that is somewhat more challenging in this field than many others: the lack of terminology resources.

Until just a few years ago, translators had no reliable resource for erotic terminology, a serious issue when you consider that, like slang, erotic terms vary widely from one country to another, and even from one generation to another. What’s more, the lack of information on the correct term can lead to the use of barbarisms, or foreign terms, and the concomitant impoverishment of the source language.

This was the driving force behind the creation of ETEP (Estudios de Traducción en el Erotismo y la Pornografía) in 2011. The collective’s three goals are to get academia to take an interest in sex due to its great importance, broaden studies to include other cultural media (e.g., comics and videogames) and, finally, to get students interested in a market niche of millions of consumers with tremendous financial potential.

And this market is no longer limited to the typical low-budget porn shorts. There is a growing number of adult film directors – both male and female – for whom the plot, and even a message (sometimes ideological), are also important. Erika Lust, for example, casts her actors carefully, imposes high production standards and believes that pornography can be an educational tool as well as pleasurable. Lucie Blush defines herself as a feminist porn director who wants to respect actors, characters and audience, and Antonio Da Silva makes art porn films featuring poetry and narration.

Translating films that are meant to be more than simple eroticism is as demanding as translating literature, and it’s not something usually covered in standard translation studies programs. Translating other adult content has its challenges, too, which is why ETEP has designed a course on translating adult content literature that covers everything from types of adult literature, sex toys, creativity, humor, comics, fetishes, author’s rights, BDSM, the current market and research.

Is translating porn for you?

Would you put it on your résumé, if you did?

Let us know what you think!

The U.S. – Number One in Spanish Speakers by 2050

Español en USA

Today, more than 548 million people – or 6.7% of the world’s population – speak Spanish, and for 470 million of these, Spanish is their native or dominant language, according to the “El Español: Una Lengua Viva” report issued by Instituto Cervantes.

Mexico tops the list with almost 121 million Spanish speakers, followed by Colombia and Spain, with 48 million and 46 million, respectively. In the US, there are 41 million people with Spanish as their native or dominant language, but if you include the 11.6 million second- and third-generation “limited competence” speakers, the total surpasses the number of Spanish speakers in Mexico, Colombia and Spain. The highest concentrations of Spanish speakers can be found in the country’s south and south-west, where 47% of New Mexico residents, 38% of California and Texas residents, and 30% of Arizona residents are Spanish speakers. In the east, 18% of New Yorkers are Spanish speakers. Surprisingly, 6% of Alaska residents also speak Spanish.

For demographic reasons, the growth of Spanish is outstripping that of English and Chinese (the overall percentages of speakers of these languages are decreasing) globally, while some 21 million people are studying Spanish worldwide (7.8 million in the US); Spanish is also the third-most used language used on the Internet. According to this report, by 2030, 7.5% of the world’s population will speak Spanish, and it is predicted that this figure will reach 10% within two or three generations.

In the US, the number of Spanish speakers (native speakers, limited competence speakers and students of Spanish) is expected to reach 138 million, or about 30% of the population by 2050.

Prioritizing your Translation Needs: Quality, Speed and Price

quality-translation

When you have a large – or even small – translation project at hand, there are three factors that you should take into consideration when choosing a translation agency, and they come from the classic quality/speed/cost project management triangle.

In an ideal business world, your goal would naturally be to achieve all three goals, and end up with a top-quality translation, delivered quickly at the lowest possible price. However, in the real world, achieving all three goals equally can pose significant challenges. Let’s see why.

One flaw in this paradigm is the assumption that these factors are of equal importance, but this is a fallacy. In the business world, poor quality is never an option for a company who wishes to keep its clients and grow its business. In this globalized business environment, your company’s written materials – especially its website – are its calling card. And how very important that card is: a 2011 study carried out by Briton Charles Duncombe, who manages online shops in various industries, found that spelling and grammar mistakes undermine the credibility of the company and the trust of the consumer, often in the first 10 seconds the web page is viewed. What’s more, spelling errors can have devastating effects on the SEO, as search engines will not find a keyword if it is misspelled. The total cost of business lost due to these kinds of errors is estimated to be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

So, if we agree that quality must be the top priority, where does that leave speed and cost?

Actually, these two factors also affect quality, since a top-quality translation will require finding just the right translator who is available and able to deliver the translation on time. Urgency can negatively affect translation quality, as working under time constraints limits the translator’s ability to carry out effective research for accurate terminology and to polish the translation to perfection. Price, too, can have a major effect on the quality of the translation, as good translators rarely come cheap; they are highly skilled professionals whose skills are in constant demand and they have no need to work at a discount rate.

The bottom line is that if you’re looking for a quality translation, you’ll want a good translator who has been given enough time to deliver the translation you need for business success, because anything less can cost your business far more than the money you save when you prioritize cost over speed and quality. Translation errors can be excruciatingly costly both in terms of finances and reputation.

Times have changed, yet no matter how globalized business becomes, the old adage that “you get what you pay for” has never been truer or more important to your business’s success.