From health services to entertainment, translation impacts an inexhaustive list of industries. The European Commission has created the #DiscoverTranslation campaign to inform audiences of the vital role translation plays in our society.
The European Commission announced the launch of #DiscoverTranslation, a campaign aimed at emphasizing the pivotal role the translation industry plays in the global economy. Releasing an informational statement this week, the European Commission provides a brief report on how a world without translation would function.
“Without translation, the world would be a duller, poorer and more unequal place, both economically and culturally, where only the ´happy few´ with a knowledge of other languages would have access to goods, information and culture from other countries,” the statement opens. “Translation has oiled the wheels of human interaction and helped [civilizations] evolve for thousands of years. Even today, could you imagine a world without online services, news from other countries, or subtitles for your [favorite] TV series? No translation, no fun!”
It goes on to describe cross-cultural relationships in which translation plays a key role in mediation, including international trade, legal proceedings, and new technologies.
“Before buying stuff or booking a trip abroad, many people want information so they can compare them,” it states. “If they can’t find this information in their language, they might go and shop somewhere else: research has shown that 75% of consumers prefer to buy products in their native language. And 60% rarely or never buy from English-only websites. Without translation, online shopping would be limited to national markets.”
The mission of the campaign states the goal to “promote the translation profession to audiences outside the language industry.” With that in mind, the statement looks at many of the ways the larger population can take translation for granted. Many important industries are listed on the document for their reliance on translation to function effectively.
“[Translation keeps] us healthy by avoiding potential allergens in food/chemicals/medicines, all listed in the ingredients/composition,” the list begins. “[It enables] economic interaction across borders—from marketing and sales to political and scientific cooperation, helping investors make informed decisions, enforcing legal rights and obligations.”
Also among the list, news in foreign languages, emergency communications, and cross-cultural entertainment and arts all utilize translation to reach global and multi-regional audiences. While it is not an exhaustive list, it gives readers some foundational information regarding how translation is more ubiquitous in our lives than we might expect.