Posted by: Lauren Webb, Operations Manager
This week’s blog posts have been an interesting mix. From the importance of cross-cultural relevance in legal translations, to a heart-warming tale of bilingualism at Christmas, and the ever-raging debate about native vs. non-native translators, there has been quite a variety of topics covered! Here’s a quick re-cap of the week’s articles, in case you missed any of them!
One of our directors, Rachel Bryan, shares her thoughts on the difficulties faced by bilingual children who are educated primarily in one language.
We discuss the importance of considering the culture and legal system belonging to the countries you are translating for, and non-equivalence of legal terms.
How do you decide what kind of text is technical? Is it a question of the field a text belongs to, or something else? We discuss what exactly a technical text is, and why it’s important that this distinction is made.
Some people (like us) believe that translators should translate solely into their native language, while others argue that it is possible to learn a language to a high enough standard to be able to translate into it. We look at the arguments and explain why we believe native translators are best.
Yesterday, we moved out of our office for greener pastures. Estrella says goodbye to the office, and looks back over the past year.Continue Reading →
Today I’m writing this blog at my desk surrounded by packing boxes, bags, pieces of new furniture… Why? Because today we are moving out to our shiny new beautiful office!
Today everybody here is working while making last-minute preparations. It’s a little sad in some ways, since we will all leave many memories in this office. But we know it will definitely be a change for the better and we are all so excited about it.
As Lauren mentioned, when you think about how things were one year ago, it’s amazing to realise how much Veritas has grown in just 12 months. Plenty of new projects, new clients, new ideas, awards won… All this has made this year a difficult and busy one, but also a year full of success.
We see this change as a reward for all this hard work, at the same time as proof that we are doing great, and also as motivation to keep working and growing even more. I’m sure we will do it!
To finish, I just wanted to take a moment to thank everyone at Veritas, all my colleagues and our directors, Sharon and Rachel, for this great year working here. Not only for the knowledge and professional improvement I have experienced here, but for their constant support and their ability to make me truly enjoy working with all of you here.
So, let’s go! Our office phone numbers will remain the same, and our doors will remain open for you. If want to visit us, ...Continue Reading →
When it comes to professional translation services, the issue of whether someone should translate out of their native language is a contentious one. There are a number of greatly differing opinions on this topic, as there are so many levels of linguistic competence. Nevertheless, I think it remains impossible to suggest that anyone can write or speak better in their second or third language than in their mother tongue. My point has more to do with the brain and personal experience than any amount of learning. This is demonstrated perfectly by Alexei Bayer over at Words without Borders, who describes his native language as follows:
It is wired into my brain. Some parts of me are made in Russian. Perhaps all of them. Certain processes, especially those which are central to being, come with Russian instructions.
This attitude is shared by the majority of the translation community, who consider that no non-native can really provide professional translation services which are as highly idiomatic, flowing and culturally relevant as if the texts were written by a native speaker.
This perspective is of course complicated by bilingual translators who live in countries such as Canada, where there are two official languages and citizens have grown up with two languages. There are a small number of cases where this applies to the degree that a person can truly claim to be a bilingual translator – ...Continue Reading →
When requesting translation services you may find that you are quoted different rates for ‘general translations’ and ‘technical translations’. The word ‘technical’ can be pretty difficult to define, so how do you know whether your piece of work falls under the category of ‘technical translation services’?
For many language service providers, the term ‘technical translations’ is used to designate any project that involves the translation of specialist terminology. Of course, this includes technical sectors in the obvious sense – such as manufacturing, electronics, engineering – but also other specialist fields, such as complex medical or legal documents. In short, if a document contains specialist terminology that will require the services of a specially trained technical translator, or significant background research, then it can be considered a ‘technical translation’. Technical translators are often much more highly qualified and experienced than other translators.
In contrast, not all documents that contain content relating to a technical field will be classed as ‘technical translations’. For example, you could have an advertisement for a new technical gadget that doesn’t actually contain any complex information, therefore a general rate would apply.
So before contacting any technical translation agency, check through the content of your document, so that you can be sure you’re being quoted the correct rate for the service you require. You don’t want to be paying more than you need ...Continue Reading →
Posted by: Lauren Webb, Operations Manager
When many people think about the translation of legal documents, they think about how words and phrases are translated from one language into another. On some occasions, translations can be quite straightforward, and this is actually the case. However in many other cases, and especially with the translation of legal documents, there is a lot more to be taken into account than finding accurate translations for the words used.
Because legal systems are designed to cater to the cultural values, norms and requirements of a particular country, they vary from place to place. Some organisations or even laws that exist in one country may not exist at all in another. This makes translation of legal documents a mine-field for those who lack the necessary knowledge and experience in this field. To give you an idea of how much things can vary, just look at how different UK law is from American law. The two countries share a language, but their culture is still different enough to warrant different systems, and therefore different legal terminology. Sometimes (though it is rare) the exact same law or organisation may exist in both countries, but it takes a great deal of training to be able to know whether this is actually the case, or if there is a small but significant difference between the two.
As contracts and other legal documents aim ...Continue Reading →