21 tips to make your reviewer happy
Thread poster: Lincoln Hui

Lincoln Hui  Identity Verified
Hong Kong
Local time: 01:04
Member
Chinese to English
+ ...
May 18, 2016

1. Outsource your translation to several people but submit it as a single person's work. Make sure that your translators vary greatly in quality, so that some of the translations are competent and others are not.
2. Make sure you mix in a few translators who don't read the source language and can barely write the target language.
3. Share standardized terms with the translators. But make sure that you keep one of them out of the loop.
4. Don't use Google Translate. But make sure your translation sounds like it.
5. When the same term appears in adjacent strings, translate them differently.
6. When the same term appears twice in the same string, translate them differently.
7. When a word has multiple meanings in the dictionary, choose the wrong one.
8. If the source text zigs, zag.
9. If the source text says something about somebody else, apply it to ourselves instead.
10. Two words with similar meanings can be freely substituted.
11. You can words switch without around affecting the meaning of sentence the.
12. You ken replenish worts any whey you wont wherewith effecting the mean.
13. Different locales of the same language all use the same terms.
14. Your translation doesn't actually have to make sense. The reviewer will fix it.
15. Past, present and future are one and interchangable.
16. Never think about using only one word when it is remotely possible that you might just have a chance to be able to use like two words or something.
17. Never follow the glossary or TM. Especially if you made it yourself.
18. You can Saskatchewan insert meaningless fleabite words in a biology sentence.
19. "A minute" means literally one minute.
20. Swaziland = Switzerland.
21. Austria is where kangaroos live.


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Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Thailand
Local time: 00:04
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
Actually jokes May 18, 2016

Lincoln Hui wrote:

1. Outsource your translation to several people but submit it as a single person's work. Make sure that your translators vary greatly in quality, so that some of the translations are competent and others are not.
2. Make sure you mix in a few translators who don't read the source language and can barely write the target language.
3. Share standardized terms with the translators. But make sure that you keep one of them out of the loop.
4. ....


This forum post is actually a joke and irony. I met with a number of agencies who reviewed and evaluated my translation. They usually justify my works as "poor translation quality" by quoting reasons similar to those of Lincoln Hui above.

I have have some translation satisfaction dispute cases. By investigating carefully, I found that those agencies have no native speakers of the target language I translated e.g. Thai as their in-house linguists. They just hired reviewers on the fly who knew nothing about the contexts, translation theories, specific jargon, legal status of translations. They finally and mostly said "we cannot pay you for such bad translation."

I always petitioned to Proz.com against such outrage agencies. Proz.com came back and rarely allowed my Blue Board entries or comments on such agencies elsewhere in the Proz community.

I gradually escalate my recognition how risky translators are faced. We have been educated, learned, trained and repeated with numerous errors but our profession is growing into nightmare.

Soonthon L.


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Phil Hand  Identity Verified
China
Local time: 01:04
Chinese to English
And this is why... May 18, 2016

Lincoln Hui wrote:

14. Your translation doesn't actually have to make sense. The reviewer will fix it.


... I never did it.

Since starting at my current employer, I have had to do some reviewing. Occasionally, I get complaints that I'm retranslating instead of editing. But the sheer number of steps involved in this kind of work makes the mind boggle. If I were to "edit," I would have to:

1) Look at the translation; find that I can't tell what it means.
2) Read the source text
3) Work out what the first translator was trying to do with the source text to twist it into this particular shape
4) Work out if the first translator's approach is viable at all
5) If it is, work out how to do it properly
6) Determine the minimum-edit path to get from what's in front of me now to a proper version

It's a massive job. Thus, when I meet good editors, the drinks are on me.


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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 18:04
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
:D May 18, 2016

Cool typos.

But there are some reviewers who love to chop-up good translations. Fortunately, most reviewers know their trade and don't give in to "preferences".


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Lincoln Hui  Identity Verified
Hong Kong
Local time: 01:04
Member
Chinese to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Review to production May 18, 2016

I do make any number of changes as I see fit because I'm delivering the finished product and of course my personal tastes are better than yours. Just because I changed something doesn't mean the translation was wrong; but we have a problem when the translation is so wrong that I have no choice but to change everything.

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21 tips to make your reviewer happy

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