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Poll: Can you “turn off” and read (non-work) without subconsciously proofreading or re-translating it?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 07:49
SITE STAFF
Apr 30, 2007

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Can you “turn off” and read (non-work) without subconsciously proofreading or re-translating it?".

View the poll here

A forum topic will appear each time a new poll is run. For more information, see: http://proz.com/topic/33629


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Nicholas Ferreira  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 10:49
Spanish to English
+ ...
If it's well written... Apr 30, 2007

...yes.

I have no trouble reading well-written texts and being completely at ease. I can't help chuckling though at some of the many translation errors that come up on everything from Chinese fortune cookies to French soap bar packages.

The career of professional translators and proofreaders will not be dying out any time soon from what I can tell...


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Danae Ferri  Identity Verified
Norway
Local time: 16:49
Norwegian to Greek
+ ...
I do the same Apr 30, 2007

Nicholas Ferreira wrote:

...yes.

I have no trouble reading well-written texts and being completely at ease. I can't help chuckling though at some of the many translation errors that come up on everything from Chinese fortune cookies to French soap bar packages.

The career of professional translators and proofreaders will not be dying out any time soon from what I can tell...


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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:49
Spanish to English
+ ...
Unless the errors are glaringly obvious Apr 30, 2007

... I can do, although misuse of the apostrophe by native speaker/writers gets my dander up every time. However, movie subtitles are one area I can't ignore and I've seen some amazing howlers.
Most of my non-work reading tends to be the local rag. In general, I think that the text quality of many UK broadsheet newspapers (The Times/Guardian etc) has deteriorated in the past 20 years or so, but perhaps I'm just getting more pernickety with age...


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Nesrin  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:49
English to Arabic
+ ...
Movies Apr 30, 2007

When I'm watching Egyptian movies I automatically translate/interpret the dialogue into English (in my head of course, not out loud). I couldn't stop that habit if I wanted to!

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JaneTranslates  Identity Verified
Puerto Rico
Local time: 10:49
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I can't. Apr 30, 2007

Errors leap off the page before my eyes; they tapdance, they howl, they sing Wagner arias in French. If someone at the next computer scrolls quickly through a long document, I will happen to glance over and spot the one misspelled word in the entire text.

Unfortunately, my magic eye works only on ohter peeple's werk!


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Mirella Soffio  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 16:49
Member (2002)
English to Italian
+ ...
I always look for the translator's name... Apr 30, 2007

...even when the novel I'm reading is NOT a translation.


Mirella


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Maria Garcia  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:49
English to Spanish
+ ...
depends Apr 30, 2007

When I'm really stressed, I can't help trying to translate everything...

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Iza Szczypka  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:49
English to Polish
+ ...
Other May 1, 2007

I'm not hard-working enough ... I simply put down the book or stop the movie not to waste my adrenaline on someone who didn't do his homework ... What irritates me the most is a publisher switching to another, usually worse (and probably cheaper) translator in the middle of a book series I have already got to love

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John Cutler  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:49
Spanish to English
+ ...
Depends for me too May 1, 2007

I guess it depends. I think I’m “turned off” and, at the most unexpected moment, something flips my switch and I “turn on”.

Because I’m surrounded by 3 languages, there are many opportunities to proofread or re-translate something. It’s happened when I’m reading a cereal box at breakfast (found 9 mistakes on one box once), or listening to a film translated into Spanish and they say something that makes perfect sense in English but sounds utterly ridiculous in Spanish. That’s the end of watching the movie for pure enjoyment. My radar has gone on and I start recreating the dialogue in my own (translator’s) image.

I've noticed it occurs the least when reading newspapers. I suppose because any good newspaper has a highly skilled, vigilant proof-reader hard at work. There’s nothing left to do but read and enjoy!


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Reed James
Chile
Local time: 11:49
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
This can be a good thing May 1, 2007

When I am reading in English, French or German, I generally tend not to translate the text in my head. I might proofread e-mails and spot mistakes -- not that I am consciously trying to do so.

However, when I am driving or walking down the street, I am constantly scanning billboards and the like and trying to figure out how the jingles would sound in English.

I think that this practice is good as long as it is not taken to an extreme. It keeps the mind honed and fresh. Furthermore, if I have a question about something as a result of my unconscious scanning, I invariably end up looking it up in a dictionary or posting my query in a discussion forum.


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xxxNMR
France
Local time: 16:49
French to Dutch
+ ...
I cannot May 2, 2007

When I am in the kitchen I translate food boxes instead of "reading" them. I live in the source country, so everything in the street is something to be translated. In a restaurant I can't concentrate on the menu: I am wondering how these fishes will be called in my own language. I cannot use one single leaflet with instructions without tracking errors (logical errors and translation errors). I always want to write to the manufacturer, but never do. When helping the kids with homework, I know the most ridiculous words in French, English and German and am automatically translating everything in another language. If someone asks me a question, I don't answer, but first translate the question. And I worked as a DTP specialist, so I see all double spaces, typesetting errors, commas instead of full stops, wrong hyphens. Can't help it.

[Bijgewerkt op 2007-05-02 22:40]


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Poll: Can you “turn off” and read (non-work) without subconsciously proofreading or re-translating it?

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