Thanks to Machine Translation, Now We Want More Translations

A few languages have dominated the majority of online content. If you wanted an access to all the interesting information available online, you should be able to read English, Russian, German, Japanese and the other top online languages. Very few of us can do that. Advanced translation technologies have been deployed to solve this issue of online language barriers. As a result, today we see more content in our own languages. Continue reading Thanks to Machine Translation, Now We Want More Translations

Basic Translation Crowdsourcing Process

Translation crowdsourcing is an innovative and effective method for getting something translated. The main idea is to let a group of people to participate the translation work. There are several important reasons why translation crowdsourcing is becoming more and more popular translation source. Continue reading Basic Translation Crowdsourcing Process

What is important to the potential translation buyer?

how-to-choose-the-right-translation-servicePeople need translations for many reasons. Some people travel around the globe. Some people do international business. Most of us at least search for information in the internet and sometimes it is available only in a language that we don’t speak. Because the needs are so different, people use different criterion when choosing a translation service provider. Here’s a list of elements that are more or less important to most translation buyers. Continue reading What is important to the potential translation buyer?

Translation Quality Standards Are Changing

What do you want for a translation? Translation industry is changing. Various external and internal factors put a heavy pressure on traditional translation services. The best translation or no translation approach isn’t enough for the current translation demand. The fact that there aren’t enough professional translators to translate everything with the highest quality creates some space for new solutions. Continue reading Translation Quality Standards Are Changing

Translation Of World’s First Twitter Book Is Being Crowdsourced

Currently is running a massive translation crowdsourcing project of the world’s first Twitter-sourced book. As many as 12000 translators and 10 languages are involved in the project. The advantage of crowdsourcing can be seen in the schedule: one week for translation from Finnish to English and another week for the rest of the project.

This is a pioneering crowdsourcing project in the field of translating literature. If and when the project is finish successfully, we might see other innovative translation crowdsourcing projects as well.

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Quality In Translation Crowdsourcing

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Translation quality is one of the most important issues in translation crowdsourcing. Based on our analysis of dozens of crowdsourcing articles and cases we elaborate the quality aspect of our earlier article about top reasons for crowdsourcing translations.

The common view is that crowdsourced translations are usually better than professional translations. The main reason is said to be that “users know best”. That is, the end-user experience is the ultimate measure of quality and when end-users themselves do the translation they will use terminology and translations that they are comfortable with. Another reason is that translations often contain a number of small, perhaps secondary errors. Due to cost, these would not be worth fixing by professional translators but end-users are able to fix these in a couple of minutes.

There are also some hints that end-users might be more tolerant towards translation errors when they know that the “crowd” has made them. On the other hand it must be noted that e.g. with Facebook most users don’t know that the translations have been crowdsourced. With small languages professional translators with good knowledge of the subject matter may be very difficult to find. Therefore the choice could be between crowdsourcing and professional translator without knowledge of the subject matter. This obviously greatly affects quality.

To achieve good quality with crowdsourcing is not self-evident, however. It requires good processes that enhance quality. For example, without first creating glossary and agreeing on terminology, the translations can not be consistent. This problem is highlighted when new versions of products are developed. The time between publishing product versions is often long and the original translators might not we available any more. The translation discrepancy between products is a real problem but it can be enhanced with good crowdsourcing processes.

One aspect of translation quality is brand identity. Crowdsourced translation might not take this aspect into account sufficiently. Also regional variations in languages are a challenge. People will translate to their own language and sometimes will not even notice that their own language is actually a regional dialect.


In general the quality of crowdsourced translations is good, often even better that by professional translators. However, crowdsourcing does not automatically result in good quality. There are some challenges but it’s possible to overcome them. The most crucial thing is to have proper crowdsourcing processes in place.

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