Translation is a Skill, but why are there still some ineligible Translators in the Industry?
Translation is a skill and a serious profession, but there are still all too many rogue operators in the translation industry that give the skilled professionals a bad name.
There are some issues that are much talked about nowadays. However, some of these issues remain unsolved. It is sometimes funny to think that translation is so tricky and has potential dangers for both sides – clients and the translator, but still, the malpractices of some of the unprofessional translators or translation agencies seem like becoming a habit.
Commercial or advertisement texts and graphics are the most frequent cases that are lost in translation. In addition, translations of medical documents or audio transcriptions are also very commonly treated so carelessly that the message often ends up lost in translation. From this sort of issue, such translators and translation agencies would finally realize the risky and tricky nature about translation.
On a lower level of expertise, when it comes to foreign languages, people tend to learn some basic important lines whenever visiting a foreign country. And any time that you are in a foreign country, and having a simple conversation with a local like saying, ‘’hello, how are you?’’, for them you sound very nice and polite. For instance, even if a Western person is so fluent in Mandarin, her or his intonation, diction would always be corrected by native speaker of the Mandarin language.
We know that our culture affects our languages, it gives people the ability to express and define the real identity of someone’s culture. In addition, learning a foreign language is not just about reading the grammar rules or learning about the vocabulary of a certain language. Learning a foreign language is a long process, so we can call it a skill and knowledge. There are some people that would classify themselves as a translator and a good interpreter, since they can speak the language. In connection with this, it is also one of the reasons why there are still some unqualified translators and interpreters in the translation industry. For them, as long as they are bilingual and can speak the language, they can be so called translators already.
Hiring an ineligible translator may affect the business performance or worse is to affect the dignity of the client. So what would be the ideal thing for the linguists to do? Having a nest of ineligible translators and interpreters in the translation world, does it entirely mean that there is no justice and discipline going on in the translation industry? And should people still care about who and which translation companies to hire? Can anybody still be trusted?
Furthermore, because of growing numbers of ineligible translators and interpreters, clients are having a difficult time to think and decide whether to trust a translation agency, translator and or just rather rely on the capability of the online translation tools. In addition, because of these issues, there are some instances where the translated texts or documents are lost in translation. I guess professional translators or linguists cannot blame what may be the choice of the clients. In order to have a better implementation of translation processes and as a business, linguists or translation agencies should know and fight for their rights. Otherwise, they are just making fools of themselves. Even if professional translators keep on insisting about their capabilities and skills in translation, some clients who learned from a tragic translation mistake will not have confidence enough to trust a linguist even a professional linguist.
This is a difficult and awkward situation in the translation business, that because of growing numbers of unprofessional and unskilled language providers, the morale and the dignity of the professional translators may be affected.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Charlene Lacandazo works for Rosetta Translation, a full-service global translation agency.