Asked to translate something already translated and published
Thread poster: Green_Gaby

Green_Gaby  Identity Verified

Local time: 06:30
Italian to Spanish
+ ...
Aug 19, 2012

Hi all (newbie waves shyly),

I have been given a translation test in English, which includes some articles of certain international law that has been already translated and published in the target language -Spanish in this case.

I haven't been warned that this is the case, nor was I asked to translate that part using my own words.

I have copied the translation in the target language almost word by word, but I can't help feeling that I am cheating!

On the other hand, I'm worried that if I were to translate the text ignoring the Spanish translation already available, I would be changing the wording of an international law and hence I would fail the test.

Is this the translation test equivalent of a trick question?

Any thoughts that could help me?


 

Miranda Drew  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 07:30
Italian to English
use the official translation Aug 19, 2012

I would use the "official" published translation for those passages, and specify that in a translator's note.
How long is this test and is it from an agency? Your saying that "some passages" have already been translated makes me think the text is too long for a test.


 

Green_Gaby  Identity Verified

Local time: 06:30
Italian to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
A note is a good idea Aug 19, 2012

Hi Miranda

Thanks for your reply!

I think putting a note is the best way to show that I'm being honest and not trying to take credit for something I didn't translate.

The test is a fragment of a feasibility study and it is just over 300 words. The international law articles cited cover about half of it.


 

Carmen Grabs
Germany
Local time: 07:30
Member (2012)
English to German
+ ...
Something similar happened to me ... Aug 19, 2012

... and the way I was advised is to be honest to the translation agency. Just ask them what they expect you to do as this part is already translated. I told the agency that I found the almost identical text on the internet and they were surprised. Then they asked me to use that translation already existingicon_smile.gif

Carmen


 

Paul Merriam  Identity Verified
Local time: 01:30
Member (2008)
Russian to English
+ ...
Maybe this is the test Aug 19, 2012

When a treaty or other document is prepared and signed in two languages, there is exactly one right answer. Maybe your potential client is trying to determine whether you can find it.

 

LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 01:30
Russian to English
+ ...
I don't know all the details, Aug 19, 2012

but you definitely cannot use somebody's published translation and present is as your own, because, in some extreme cases, you could be sued, unless you just mean some quotations, but then you would still have to make references to the source.

 

finnword1
United States
Local time: 01:30
English to Finnish
+ ...
I wouldn't worry about it Aug 19, 2012

If the existing translation is good, i would use it. If I can improve it, I would. I don't see how publishing a translation makes it "official".

 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 07:30
Spanish to English
+ ...
Honesty is the best policy Aug 19, 2012

Carmen Grabs wrote:

... and the way I was advised is to be honest to the translation agency. Just ask them what they expect you to do as this part is already translated. I told the agency that I found the almost identical text on the internet and they were surprised. Then they asked me to use that translation already existingicon_smile.gif

Carmen


Yes. You'll feel better with your own integrity reinforced and it's probably good kharma too, if you believe in that kind of thing.


 

Green_Gaby  Identity Verified

Local time: 06:30
Italian to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Just to clarify... Aug 19, 2012

finnword1 wrote:

If the existing translation is good, i would use it. If I can improve it, I would. I don't see how publishing a translation makes it "official".


Well, it's UN legislation. I would say it doesn't get more "official" than that ;-D


LilianBoland wrote:

but you definitely cannot use somebody's published translation and present is as your own, because, in some extreme cases, you could be sued, unless you just mean some quotations, but then you would still have to make references to the source.



I had no intention to plagiarise international law in a translation testicon_smile.gif I will make a note citing the source. Thanks


 

Green_Gaby  Identity Verified

Local time: 06:30
Italian to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
That is exactly what I thought Aug 19, 2012

Paul Merriam wrote:

When a treaty or other document is prepared and signed in two languages, there is exactly one right answer. Maybe your potential client is trying to determine whether you can find it.


 


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Asked to translate something already translated and published

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