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Weekly Shorts | February 19, 2021

Language in the News, Localization, Translation, Weekly Shorts

Facebook fixes translation error that called farmers “peasants”

Facebook has removed its translation error from a recent covid-19 post on California governor Gavin Newsom’s page, according to Fox News. The translation originally read, “We’re focused on vaccinating our food workers, farmers, peasants and our essential workers as quickly as possible.” The correct translation is “We’re focused on vaccinating our food workers, farmers, farm workers and our essential workers as quickly as possible.”

Language barrier blocks UK Latinos from covid-19 vaccines

Spanish speakers living in the United Kingdom may have a hard time getting covid-19 vaccines, according to The Guardian. For a February 15th article, two immigrants from Latin America told the international paper that general practitioners had refused to give them the shot because they did not speak English.

Oromo and Somali translation needed

The city of San Diego, California is redistricting — a process where city council, state legislative and congressional districts are redrawn – and one Voice of San Diego says may be leaving African Americans out. Right now, information about the process is available in 12 languages but not Oromo or Somali, which the news site alludes are more prevalently spoken in the city than officials are aware. Target languages for translation are determined by population – a population that is measured in districts. Without information in their language, residents can’t participate in dialogue about the redistricting – which the site contends may further diminish their representation.

Epoch Times hides its identity on localized site

American media watch group NiemanLab has called out fake news site Epoch Times for leaving its name off Spanish translations. In the past, Epoch News has published in 22 languages – all under the website’s name. “Now the organization is, uh, expanding its disinformation services with Tierra Pura, a separate, Argentina-based website that spreads conspiracy theories and false information about covid-19, QAnon and US election fraud,” in both Spanish and Portuguese, writes NiemanLab’s deputy editor Laura Hazard Owen. The localized site does not reveal its Epoch ties.

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Weekly Shorts | January 15, 2021

Business News, Geopolitics, Interpretation, Language in the News, Language Industry News and Events, Localization, Multimedia Translation, Personalization and Design, Technology, Terminology, Translation, Uncategorized, Weekly Shorts

Translation error says Spanish speakers don’t need vaccine

A localization error on the Virginia Department of Health’s website told Spanish speakers they don’t need coronavirus vaccines, according to Norfolk, Virginia newspaper The Virginian-Pilot. Medical students at George Mason University discovered the mistake, which may have stemmed from unclear source text: “Before the faulty translation, the English passage simply meant the vaccine wasn’t mandatory,” the paper reports.

TransPerfect opens Istanbul office

New York-based translation company TransPerfect has opened a new outpost in Istanbul, Turkey. N Can Okay will oversee the office, dealing primarily with talent recruitment, according to a company release.

Neural interpretation from TikTok?

ByteDance, the parent company of international social media platform TikTok, has gotten in the interpreting game, releasing an open source tool named NeurST: Neural Speech Translation Toolkit. Note this is a misnomer, as the tech does not translate written language — rather interprets verbal speech. Full code is available on collaboration portal GitHub.

Nieman Lab predicts non-English news

American journalism think tank The Nieman Lab anticipates the United States will see more non-English news content in 2021 as both translated and in-language reporting increase. “Additionally, we foresee more substantive and equitable partnerships developing between mainstream and ethnic media organizations,” write Stefanie Murray and Anthony Advincula.

ATA accepting conference proposals

The American Translators Association has issued its call for presentation proposals for the association’s October 27-30, 2021 conference. The event will be held in Minneapolis, Minnesota with virtual attendance options. Proposals are accepted through March 1.

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