Spanish or French to Portuguese - Which one to chose, having in mind market demands?
Thread poster: Vitor Visconti

Vitor Visconti  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:26
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Feb 21, 2014

Hello everyone,

I'm currently working as an English to Br Portuguese translator, mostly in marketing, general and legal fields, and I'm willing to learn a second language (French or Spanish) to work on the same fields. My idea is that this will help me getting more jobs since I'll have more to offer to agencies and clients. I would like to know what are your ideas concerning this point of view, and also, if you have any knowledge/experience on the markets I've mentioned.

thank you very much.


 

Mark
Local time: 13:26
Italian to English
United Kingdom Feb 21, 2014

There was recently a report into the languages that the UK needs, if that's any help:

http://www.britishcouncil.org/organisation/publications/languages-future


 

Rogerio de Moraes  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:26
English to Portuguese
+ ...
French X Spanish Feb 21, 2014

I will say what I think based on my opinion, not in facts cause I really don't know the reality.

I have the impression that there are more translators from Spanish into PT than FR-PT.

So - if my idea is correct you would have many more jobs with you deal with French.

I think the following replies will bring some facts that will clarify what I guess.

Hope it helps.

Cheers!


 

Vitor Visconti  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:26
English to Portuguese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
thanks Feb 21, 2014

Thank you guys, I appreciate your comments.

 

Robert Rietvelt  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:26
Member (2006)
Spanish to Dutch
+ ...
Please do know what you are starting! Feb 21, 2014

Learning a whole new language being 'Braseilero'? I don't know where you live, but if you want to learn French ......

I translate, as Dutch citizen, from English, Spanish and German, but it took me years and a lot of studies to master those languages (and thank god I live in Europe).

I also speak French and Portugees, i.e enough to come by when I am there, but to make my profession of it????

So my advice would be: 'every man to his trade'. In other words, do what you are good at.


[Edited at 2014-02-21 18:53 GMT]

[Edited at 2014-02-21 18:53 GMT]


 

ATIL KAYHAN  Identity Verified
Turkey
Local time: 14:26
Member (2007)
Turkish to English
+ ...
Not the Market Demands Feb 22, 2014

I agree with Robert. I will say pick a language not because of market demands, but because you would really like to do it. If you like to do a language, then chances are that you will be successful at it. Market demands might change in time. Another reason you should go with a language you would like to do. Good luck.

 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 12:26
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
I don't mean to discourage you... Feb 22, 2014

Let me start by saying that being Portuguese I don't know what the market demands are in Brazil regarding French and Spanish, but my experience in Europe is that, though I live in a francophone country, I translate more and more from English and less and less from French, Spanish and Italian (my source languages). As the saying goes: o saber não ocupa lugar (for those of you who don't speak Portuguese, it means something like "You can never learn too much"). Best of luck!

 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:26
English to Spanish
+ ...
Learn? Feb 22, 2014

You say you're willing to LEARN a second language (French or Spanish)? All I can say is that if you are not fluent in those languages already, forget it. There are plenty of people out there who can beat the socks off you. Stick to what you know; trying what you don't know is a discredit to our profession and causes potential clients to not trust us.

 

nnaemeka Odimegwu
Nigeria
Local time: 12:26
French to English
+ ...
I also agree Feb 22, 2014

ATIL KAYHAN wrote:

I agree with Robert. I will say pick a language not because of market demands, but because you would really like to do it. If you like to do a language, then chances are that you will be successful at it. Market demands might change in time. Another reason you should go with a language you would like to do. Good luck.

I also concur, kayhan. Success at a language comes first before market demands. With the Internet, the market and market opportunities have increased for the major languages.


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 13:26
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
It makes sense to keep learning! Feb 22, 2014

Henry Hinds wrote:
You say you're willing to LEARN a second language (French or Spanish)? All I can say is that if you are not fluent in those languages already, forget it. There are plenty of people out there who can beat the socks off you. Stick to what you know; trying what you don't know is a discredit to our profession and causes potential clients to not trust us.

I think that learning a third or fourth language from scratch makes total sense for a translator. Of course one should not advertise services in that language after four months of classes, but widening your knowledge and possibilities is a sound long-term strategic decision.

If I had the time, I would start learning Finnish and/or Japanese, but of course I would not dare to offer translation from those languages without a solid knowledge and plenty of free-of-charge experience.


 

Vitor Visconti  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:26
English to Portuguese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you Feb 22, 2014

Robert, Atil, Tereza, Nnaemeka and Tomás, thank you very much for sharing your experiences and thoughts. I will study hard to learn and become proficient in one of those languages. It will take some time, but I think it will be worthwhile.

best regards.


 

Henry Hinds  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 05:26
English to Spanish
+ ...
It makes sense to keep learning! Feb 22, 2014

It does make sense, in languages in which you are already proficient. As for others, they are good for widening your horizons but not for translation. The languages you already know go on forever, and if you forget that, you will never be good at anything except as a "Jack of All Trades and Master of None".

 

Vitor Visconti  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 08:26
English to Portuguese
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
I agree Feb 23, 2014

Thank you Henry, that's very reasonable.

 

Terence Noonan (X)  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:26
German to English
+ ...
RE: "Jack of All Trades and Master of None". Feb 23, 2014

Henry,

There are translators out there that translate from languages learned later in life. I started learning German at age 20, in 1997, and have been translating DE-EN for over 10 years now without complaint. I started learning Mandarin Chinese at age 29 and have been steadily building a portfolio in CN-EN since 2010. Some people have a gift for language that doesn't diminish rapidly in the post-adolescent years, as is common with the general population.


 


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