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Should we be writing Portuguese according to the 'Acordo Ortográfico'?
Thread poster: Helen Carter

Helen Carter
Local time: 00:10
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Sep 14, 2010

I'm a little confused here. As a translator maybe I should know what's what...but I'm not sure anyone knows what's going on. I believe the press has had to start writing in line with the new Acordo, but the rest of us mortals can choose what to do until 1012. Is this right? What have other translators into Portuguese been doing?

 

CristinaPereira  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:10
Member (2005)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Still writing according to the correct rules Sep 14, 2010

Hi Helen,

It's an interesting issue, I've been wanting to know what the others are doing. I'm against the "Acordo", but I can't fight it, of course. For the time being, I simply don't follow it. So, I'm just waiting for a client to tell me to write according to the new rules to see what happens. It happened once, but then they gave up because there were no tools available to assure quality/consistency. I was so relieved! But I guess it won't take that long for this to become a reality. I don't have the tools/spellcheckers yet and when the time comes I'll bring that issue up and see what can be doneicon_frown.gif

Cristina


 

Helen Carter
Local time: 00:10
English to Portuguese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
. Sep 14, 2010

Exactly. I don't like it either and haven't started making changes. But it's really strange to see 'ação', 'lecionar'...etc. etc. and it's made me wonder whether I'm doing my job properly. I also think that now that there are so many 'formações' taking place, this could be one of the areas (if it really is to be enforced) that should be given priority in terms of training provided to the population in general, but especially the adult population and those in the field in particular.

 

Constance Mannshardt  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 01:10
Member (2005)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
I have been using the Acordo... Sep 14, 2010

along with everyhing that's published in Brazil since the Acordo was officialized. I am relieved to see that Portugal is finally adopting the new rules, too. It is of no importance if we like it or not, it is official and should be applied. I use to ask my customers in Portugal what they want me to use, but in Brazil it is already obvious and a fact: new rules apply. I like it!

 

Paula Borges  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 22:10
Member (2010)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Rules are rules! Sep 15, 2010

Everything published in Brazil has to be in accordance with the new rules.
Spellcheckers are a problem still. It takes a long time sometimes to research, but we're getting used to it and after a while it actually seems easier! There are doubts here and there but... it's a slow process.

Apparently, there are a lot more changes going us for us in Brazil, but we'll get through it and in the end it seems that a lot has been simplified. These things have to happen now and then otherwise we'd still be writing "pharmácia".

[Edited at 2010-09-15 02:33 GMT]


 

Inga Petkelyte  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 00:10
Lithuanian to Portuguese
+ ...
Resisting Sep 15, 2010

In my opinion, this AO is incorrect in all ways and meanings. So I resist and will do it until my last breathicon_smile.gif

Being a good citizen, I asked this question in the last seminar I attended: and no, in Portugal, we don't need to apply it so far. Oh, thanks God !


 

Paula Borges  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 22:10
Member (2010)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
You can only resist up to 2012 Sep 15, 2010

So I figured the best way would be to get used to it now.

 

CristinaPereira  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:10
Member (2005)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Business as usual until possible Sep 15, 2010

It seems in Brazil people accept it much better than in Portugal. Perhaps because it affects only 0.5% of the vocabulary while in Portugal it affects 2%. It's no minor change, as some people seem to think. When I read in the press texts following the new rules, I find myself instantly thinking of a bunch of typos. I even read these words differently in my mind, like when I saw "ano letivo" (I read it mentally with a closed "e", which sounded really strange).

Anyway, I will continue to follow the present and correct rules, not only because I'm against this ridiculous change. I'd run the risk of having my translations criticized because there were a lot of typos in there! For me, I think the best is to wait for clients to lead the change. If they don't ask us to follow the new rules for now, it's because they don't want it (for now, I know). Anyway, I wouldn't dare to make such an attempt without having the proper tools in place (spellcheckers). And as for CAT tools, it may even take more time to have a spellchecker.

Cristina
PS - This might have had much more feedback in the Portuguese forum.


 

Helen Carter
Local time: 00:10
English to Portuguese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
what's wrong with 'pharmácia'? Sep 16, 2010

I agree with Cristina regarding sound and typos - I feel exactly the same. As for changes, we all know that language is always changing and we adapt easily, but there are things we learn from early on that are difficult to accept. Natives know the difference between UK/US English, PT/BR Portuguese.
I have always used the term 'bicha' to refer to queue and am not embarassed. I had an excellent Primary School teacher and feel that I am going against what she taught us.
This is the first time I started a discussion, and was reading the other forums in English, so started this one here, in English! You're right, it would have been better in the Portuguese section.


 

Paula Borges  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 22:10
Member (2010)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
There was a thread in the Portuguese forum Sep 16, 2010

I have seen many stats saying Brazilians will actually have to change more than the Portuguese people, but to be honest, that is irrelevant. The language we've been writing is a result of many similar 'acordos' from the past (hence my example, with pharmácia), I think my grandparents had to spell things differently a couple of times, and you just get used to it.

We don't write pharmácia anymore since a decision said "ph" no longer sounded like "f" and I don't think anybody wants to write pharmácia at this point, except for the vintage charm of it.

Of course it is difficult for me to write contacto, micro-ondas, and so many other things and I struggle to find the right answers sometimes. But our clients demand it, those are rules and from 2012 on they'll be mandatory everywhere. I believe that as language professionals, we must follow those rules regardless of how we feel about it personally.

To me, waiting until 2012 is wasting a precious amount of time we were given to adapt to the new rules, and from then on they'll be unavoidable (they are already mandatory in Brazil, we didn't have much time to get used to it).

It is still very difficult to adapt, but the more I do it the more it seems clear to me that many things are indeed being simplified, which will be great for future generations.

As for the word "bicha", the "acordo" doesn't change anything related to vocabulary, it simply unifies spelling. No one will have to use the same words and they will not mean the same things, I think that's a common misconception some people seem to be getting from certain sources.

I can't wait for a spellcheck tho, because without it it's consuming more of my time than I'd like to, I have to admit.

[Edited at 2010-09-16 14:11 GMT]

[Edited at 2010-09-16 14:12 GMT]

[Edited at 2010-09-16 14:15 GMT]


 

Margreet Mohle  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 19:10
Member (2010)
French to Dutch
+ ...
Many years ago... Sep 16, 2010

In 92/93 I was in my last year of translation studies in Antwerp, writing a thesis in Portuguese. My professor insisted I use the new spelling, although others in the department did think that was premature. So now finally he is vindicated, and after almost 20 years my work (which no one will ever read probably) will be up-to-dateicon_smile.gif.

 

Paula Borges  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 22:10
Member (2010)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Margreet Sep 16, 2010

I'm not sure what new spelling you are referring to, this "agreement" came out recently.

 

Margreet Mohle  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 19:10
Member (2010)
French to Dutch
+ ...
I might be wrong... Sep 17, 2010

...but looking up information about this Acordo, I keep being referred to the Acordo ortografico de 1990. That is the one I (and my prof at the time) was referring to. If there is another, newer one, I'd like to know where I can find it, as this seems rather confusing (as you will guess, I have been out of things for a while, I'm just trying to get back to translation work).

This is one of the links I found, which cites the changes implemented in the press since June 2010 as based on the Acordo from 1990

http://aeiou.expresso.pt/expresso-poupa-letras-e-adota-acordo-ortografico=f590263

This is a link from the FLiP site:

http://www.priberam.pt/docs/AcOrtog90.pdf


 

Paula Borges  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 22:10
Member (2010)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
There is a new one Sep 17, 2010

It has been in force in Brazil since January and it will be in force in every Portuguese speaking nation by 2012.

[Edited at 2010-09-17 05:30 GMT]


 

Christina Paiva  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 22:10
Portuguese to English
+ ...
Portuguese Orthographic Accord Sep 17, 2010

The Accord soon to be enforced was first signed in 1990 - so Margreet - your thesis is up-to-date with the new rulesicon_smile.gif

In 92/93 I was in my last year of translation studies in Antwerp, writing a thesis in Portuguese. My professor insisted I use the new spelling, although others in the department did think that was premature. So now finally he is vindicated, and after almost 20 years my work (which no one will ever read probably) will be up-to-date


Fourteen years went by and finally the 8 members of the communities who speak Portuguese ratified the agreement (with amendments) in 2004...

It's hard to get used to writing ideia, but it's great to be able to ignore diacritics such as dieresisicon_biggrin.gif

@Paula, I had no idea we must write Micro-ondas, but on the other hand according to Houaiss (2009) you may choose contacto or contato ; detectar or detetar. I'm glad I can write microrganismo because there is also the option micro-organismo icon_mad.gif

Building a personal dictionary inside MS word as I translate was the solution I found to comply with the rules - and a good dictionary - of course icon_smile.gif

As Paula said:
... waiting until 2012 is wasting a precious amount of time we were given to adapt to the new rules, and from then on they'll be unavoidable


 
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