Cantonese v Mandarin
Thread poster: Libero_Lang_Lab

Libero_Lang_Lab  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:23
Russian to English
+ ...
Feb 11, 2010


I realise this probably doesn't belong in this forum - hopefully a mod can move to the relevant location... but don't know where else to post it.

A client of mine is interested in having their website localised into Chinese, and have specified that they want it in both Mandarin and Cantonese. Is that a standard request? My understanding was that, for the purposes of a website, they would not need to be differentiated. Do they really need two completely separate mirror sites?

Thanks for any light you can shed.



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Henry Zhang  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:23
English to Chinese
+ ...
Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese Feb 11, 2010

Hi Dan:
People in mainland China use simplified Chinese while those in Hong Kong and Taiwan use Traditional Chinese.
Cantonese is a very popular dialect spoken by people in Hong Kong and in some parts of China. I believe your client confuses Cantonese (spoken language) with Traditional Chinese (written language) here.
For many English website, there's a simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese equivalent. For example: (English) (Traditional Chinese, Taiwan) (Traditional Chinese, Hong Kong) (Simplified Chinese, mainland China)
Depending on which market your clients is focusing on, the website may need to be translated into Traditional Chinese or Simplified Chinese or both.
The website in TC are different from the website in SC not only because of characters, but also because of wordings. If you compare the three Chinese websites (two traditional Chinese websites and one simplified Chinese website), you would notice they use different Chinese words for the same English word.

[Edited at 2010-02-12 01:41 GMT]

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