Telephone Interpreting - Tearing Down Language Barriers
Telephone interpreting is a rapidly growing service provided to businesses, hospitals, the criminal justices system and others. Read the article for more information on this service.
Interpretation is the transmission of an oral message from one language to another. In many cases interpretation requires there to be an interpreter on location as two or more individuals of various cultures meet and communicate. When a direct meeting isn't possible, telephone interpreting services can be used to effectively communicate.
In either situation, it's important to have a skilled interpreter who is able to accurately absorb, translate and communicate speech from the country of origin while accurately representing and displaying the cultural nuances. Whether in person or through an interpretation service it's the duty of the interpreter to accurately convey the true meaning of spoken dialogue.
There are two types of interpretation that are used commonly by interpreters: Consecutive and Simultaneous.
Consecutive Interpreting - Telephone interpreting services generally rely on consecutive interpreting. This is the process by which the interpreter and the source-language speaker take turns speaking. The consecutive interpreter will listen closely and when the speaker finishes (or pauses for a long period) the interpreter can deliver a portion of the message in the target language.
Simultaneous Interpreting - This is often used in larger settings where there are a variety of people speaking several different languages such as at the UN. However, it is also used in bilingual situations. The interpreter is separate from the speakers and audience when possible and will render the source-language simultaneously. As the speaker is talking the interpreter will utter his interpretation as quickly as he can and hopefully keep up. In professional settings like the UN the interpreter will be located in a sound proof booth utilizing a microphone. The audience will here the interpretation through earphones, loudspeakers or even television.
Common Languages calling for Telephone Interpretation
Telephone interpretation services are most commonly needed in the business and legal fields and there are no primary borders or barriers that keep the services from being utilized in countries around the world. Because legal, political and business affairs take place in so many countries, it's not uncommon for a company to require some sort of telephone interpretation service when sourcing new global clients for things like logistics, outsourcing, parts acquisition, foreign exchange trade, etc.
While some of the most common languages seen in telephone interpreting are Spanish, East-Asian and a handful of European languages there are more than five thousand languages spoken in the world with more than 300 languages spoken in the US. Approximately 162 are indigenous to the United States (various Indian populations and tribes) and approximately 150 languages are based on immigrant dialect. Of course most of those languages are spoken by few people. Some of the most commonly spoken languages in the United States after English are Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Russian, Arabic, Tagalog, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean (not in that order).
With more than 14 million households in the US alone where English is not the primary language it's easy to see how telephone interpretation not only helps businesses connect but it helps the average citizen connect over business, legal, and personal matters.
The Security of Telephone Interpretation
Some individuals who have never worked with a telephone interpretation service often fear about the loss of privacy or confidentiality. This is a natural feeling when you consider that another person is injected into the conversation. While it may seem unnerving it's certainly not something to fret over. The field of telephone interpretation has come a long way and the agencies that provide this service recognize the need for confidentiality and privacy.
For peace of mind in clients, telephone interpretation services often provide signed confidentiality agreements while also binding their agents to strict ethical codes when it comes to handling client interpreting. Additionally, interpreters are often held to the same HIPAA compliancy standards as other professionals due to being privy to very personal and private information.
With professionalism, certification and quality training, telephone interpretation can be a reliable way to communicate across world-wide language barriers.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
TransDual Forensics isn’t just a legal and forensic transcription and translation company. We also offer telephone interpreting services to businesses, medical professionals, schools, & social services. We do however, provide English/ Spanish legal translation and transcription services to law enforcement, attorneys, businesses and individuals.