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Translating for multi-lingual/cultural audiences
Thread poster: Roy Williams

Roy Williams  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:07
German to English
Dec 19, 2008

Hello all,

This post is sort of a follow up regarding my earlier post regarding marketing text translation. My question is, how does you know, when translating for an audience with varying levels of english, whether you've written in a style that is simple enough to be understood by a multilingual audience but not too simple that the text is wordy or insulting bumbed down for a native english speaker?

Thanks in advance

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English to Bosnian
+ ...
I vote for natural language - native language Dec 19, 2008


You need to write the way a native speaker would, and it should be proofread by a native English speaker. If your proofreader is a professional editor/writer, he or she will know how to optimize the vocabulary and sentence structure for a broad audience such as yours.

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Roy Williams  Identity Verified
Local time: 14:07
German to English
would be nice Jan 7, 2009

As I am an in-house translator, I return my translation directly to the author/department from which the source text originated. These are not native english speakers but some have a reasonable understanding of english (even if they over estimate their language skills). Often they don't understand why I made the word structural choices that I make because of a lack of experience with naturally written engish and expect what I refer to as germanized english.

They also expect, by virtue of being a native english speaker, I should instinctively know what words/sentence structure people with varied levels of english skills will easily understand. The problem is Im having trouble finding the right balance between simplified english and over simplified english that will satisfy the end user.

[Edited at 2009-01-07 07:45 GMT]

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