Seeking a Source of Bad SP>EN Translations
Thread poster: Sandra Alboum

Sandra Alboum  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 04:15
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Apr 1, 2004

Hi there.

I teach a college course on Translation and I need to find a source of bad SP>EN translations for my kids to critique.

I don't want "Machine Translation" bad. I need translations that have the wrong syntax, register, some spelling might be off... something like that, where they can write some meaningful suggestions on how to better the text.

If you have a specific text you'd like to send me (I need Spanish to English ONLY), please email me at


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xxxLia Fail  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:15
Spanish to English
+ ...
That's not too difficult:-) Apr 1, 2004

All you have to do is visit a few websites for Spanish Ayuntamientos, cultural bodies, museums, cultural events, etc for fairly bad to awful translations:-) Stilted, unnatural English at best, not machine translated, just a wee bit too good for that....

I have come across some recently and will send you the links:-)

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Amancio Iglesias
Local time: 10:15
English to Spanish
+ ...
In any shop... Apr 1, 2004

"In this establishment there are available official complaint forms for the use of the clients who require them"

Esta hoja, que parece tener cierto carácter oficial, está colgada en la mayoría de las tiendas andaluzas, por alguna razón que se me escapa. Viéndola, se ve el español subyacente sin hacer especiales alardes: En este establecimiento existen hojas de reclamaciones oficiales a disposición de los clientes que las soliciten.

Lo estoy redactando de memoria, es posible que sea ligeramente diferente, pero el mensaje es así más o menos.

Personalmente, lo traduciría como "Official complaint forms available on demand", que creo que es cómo se concebiría este tipo de anuncio en inglés.

Pero esta traducción parece perpetrada así adrede.

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Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Local time: 11:15
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Rip off some restaurant menues Apr 2, 2004

Puerto Cruz in Tenerife springs to mind. I believe they do it deliberately, since more expencive places have flawless translated menues hanging outside, whereas the next door with the same dishes has lists full of horrible mistakes in all languages. It signals to the tourist: Cheap prices here, welcome!

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