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US Realia in German
Thread poster: A_Fangrath

A_Fangrath  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:33
English to German
+ ...
Mar 7, 2009

My question is about an EN-DE translation.

I have typical US-Realia, things that a really typical for US. A German audience does not know them.
Only few people who have spent at least 1 year there.
I have, so I know them.

It's

Cheetos
Doritos
Salsa (the sause that goes with it)
for example.

I would not know them if I would be an avarage person here in Europe who has never been in US.

One option is to translate
Cheetos and Doritos as
Chips in German.

Btw, we are talking about subtitles. So the words will stay about 3 sec on the screen.

So this solution seems to be a good idea to me.
It is short, the onlooker/reader knows in an instant what is meant by Chips.

Cheetos, Doritos? it'll take him by surprise.


Or what do you think?

[Edited at 2009-03-07 19:34 GMT]

[Edited at 2009-03-07 19:37 GMT]

[Edited at 2009-03-07 20:02 GMT]


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My Hue McGowran  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 09:33
German to English
Chips mit Käse geschmack? Corn/Mais chips Mar 7, 2009

Hi there,

I wouldn't just write chips because both types of chips are quite different kinds. BUt perhaps you could leave the name (Cheetos) and then write 'Chips mit Käse-Geschmack', or something. With the Doritos you could do the same and then write 'Corn-Chips' or 'Mais-Chips'. Most Germans know Salsa, but I would also include 'Dip', i.e. Salsa-Dip.


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A_Fangrath  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:33
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
How much can you take in 3 sec? Mar 7, 2009

Dear My,
thank you,
it's true...I've considered almost everything.
I know Cheetos and I love Doritos and Salsa.
I would love to explain to everyone who wants to know what it is...yammy:)
I would certainly go for something like you porposed in a text that is going to be printed.

The thing is, how much someone can take in in 3 sec? (subtitles)
my options are limited.

Not much...
It's a pity but I guess I will have to go with Chips?
And if I come across Budweiser??!:)

Unless you guys have a better solution, I will go with the shortest translations, very general.
And I'll send a note to the editor. Not that he thinks it's a mistake....




[Edited at 2009-03-07 19:56 GMT]

[Edited at 2009-03-07 20:07 GMT]


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Vito Smolej
Germany
Local time: 09:33
Member (2004)
English to Slovenian
+ ...
I would leave it as is Mar 7, 2009

A_Fangrath wrote:
I know Cheetos and I love Doritos and Salsa.
...
And if I come across Budweiser??!:)

maybe (maybe) qualify them with "Chips Marke" or similar.

It's a question of course how highbrow the text is supposed to be. Depends on the target readership: readers of Bild or Zeit? The former would not care less if you wrote Pretzel and the latter would for sure know the taste of it all.


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Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:33
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
Chips Mar 7, 2009

Is it in any way important to know what kind of "chips" is meant? Probably not, so I'd go with "Chips" here.

As for "Budweiser": What is called "Kind of Beers" in the US will probably not be recognized as beer at all in Germany. Still, if it's important for understanding, you need to be creative, but it probably isn't, or is it?


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A_Fangrath  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:33
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Chips&Beer Mar 7, 2009

Thank you,

what a topic on a sat. night!

you kind of confirmed my opinion:)

chips&beer...
if they only knew how much will be lost here...

But I have no choice...may the Budwiser and Dorito forgive me!


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Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:33
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
Which opinion did I confirm? Mar 7, 2009

A_Fangrath wrote:

Thank you,

what a topic on a sat. night!

you kind of confirmed my opinion:)

chips&beer...
if they only knew how much will be lost here...

But I have no choice...may the Budwiser and Dorito forgive me!



I'm not sure which is your opinion that you think I confirmed. So just to make sure: What I was trying to say about Budweiser is that it won't be recognised as beer in Germany because it is a tasteless, thin swill (not sure whether this is a good translation for "Plörre") and not worthy to be called a beer.


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A_Fangrath  Identity Verified
Local time: 09:33
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
How dare you! :))) Mar 7, 2009

Just kidding!


You kind of confirmed me in choosing the translation Chips, beer,
in choosing simple translations instead of elaborating on the Doritos and Bundweiser.

It is really not crutial for the context. So I feel more confident now.


But! Budweiser, Plörre!?
I know what you mean,
but it is the only beer that tasted ok to me:)


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Jan Willem van Dormolen  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 09:33
English to Dutch
+ ...
Wot? No Cheetos or Doritos in Germany? Mar 8, 2009

These are quite common in the Netherlands, right next to Germany... Every supermarket has them, and they are quite popular.
Strange that these would be so unknown just 300 km further down the road!
The unity of Europe is still far away, despite what the politicians tell us.


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Erik Freitag  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:33
Member (2006)
Dutch to German
+ ...
exist (under different names), but aren't very popular Mar 8, 2009

Jan Willem van Dormolen wrote:

These are quite common in the Netherlands, right next to Germany... Every supermarket has them, and they are quite popular.
Strange that these would be so unknown just 300 km further down the road!
The unity of Europe is still far away, despite what the politicians tell us.


Well, of course they exist, but under different names (strangely enough, doritos are called "Tacos" or "Taco-Chips" here, I can't remember the name for cheetos at the moment), and they aren't as popular as potato chips here. So, no worries...


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juvera  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:33
Member (2005)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Common sense Mar 11, 2009

You have to use your common sense when translating subtitles.

In this case: chips, Tacos, corn-chips, dip, beer, or whatever is perfectly OK.
Presumably when you look at the screen, you can see that one person is offering a bag of something to someone, and even if he says:
Want some Doritos?
You can merrily write in the subtitle:
Want some?

The exception is, when the substance has some role or consequence in the story later on.

You must not think that every word is important. The message is important, and with limited space you have to make decisions all the time, what needs to be translated and what can be ignored.

The visuals are also a factor, because sometimes they are self-explanatory, sometimes not, and it has an effect on the content of the subtitles.

In this case, even the message is not that important, just the fact that the person is saying something and the viewer reading the subtitles shouldn't feel left out.

After all, Doritos may be offered on the screen, as a gesture, but the guy could actually say:
Did you leave Dory for good?

And that would be a different ballgame.

[Edited at 2009-03-11 10:46 GMT]


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