The History of Dubbing. Dubbing is the process of replacing the dialogue lines of an audiovisual production in its original version with dialogues in another language. Its objective is that the production can be understood by other people. The voice actors must make the dubbing as natural as possible and that it makes sense with what is being seen in the production. The history of dubbing is closely linked to the history of cinema, television and the internet, for this reason it is believed that it is worth initially referring to their origins.

It was in October 1888 that the oldest known film was made, its name “Roundhay Garden Scene”, a short film shot in England. Nevertheless, the birth of cinema is attributed to the Lumiere brothers, who in December 1895 publicly screened “La Sortie de l’usine Lumière à Lyon”, a 46-second film that projected the departure of workers from a French factory. From there, film companies and films began to emerge in different parts of the world (Paramount Pictures was born in 1912, the first film by Charles Chaplin was released in 1914, Warner Brothers in 1923, and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer in 1924).

Now, all those films were silent, without any sound. It was not until 1927 that the first sound feature film was projected by synchronizing a record with the projector: “The Jazz Singer”, by Warner Brothers. In that same year, 1927, the first electronic television was born, which began to be manufactured commercially until 1940 in the United States.

Television began to assume a determining role in the entertainment and information of the people, transmitting more and more events, films and news. On November 22, 1963, the assassination of John F. Kennedy is recorded on television. In 1967 the first live satellite broadcast was given, and on July 20, 1969, the landing of Apollo 11 on the Moon was broadcast to the entire world. It should be added that in November 1969 the first interconnected network was created and the first remote connection between computers was born, with a first link between the universities of UCLA and Stanford. This gave way to the development of the World Wide Web (WWW) in 1989 to facilitate collaborative work at CERN. The system became so popular that in 1991 it was opened to the external public, who welcomed it thanks to the creation of the Mosaic browser in 1993. Its reception was so rapid that by 1997 there were more than 200,000 websites.

Given the above, it is important to delve into the role of dubbing as an important complement to these media. On May 19, 1929, the first Oscars ceremony took place. All of the nominated films were silent. A special prize was only awarded to “The Jazz Singer”, the work of the newborn sound film, considering that it was a film that had revolutionized the film industry. Although in its beginnings the films did not have dialogues, but effects and soundtrack.

In 1952 the film “Singing in the Rain” marked perhaps the true beginning of sound cinema. Which was good, but it was also a major concern for Hollywood producers, as their exports to non-English speaking countries were in great jeopardy, the public did not accept the insertion of subtitles on the images, and the collections fell. In some parts of Spain a kind of “live dubbing” began to be applied, while the film was being screened, various actors with megaphones in hand synchronized dialogues with the mouths of the actors on screen.

Then the consideration of dubbing arose, which at the beginning had important complications, since the sound techniques were not of good quality and the voice did not adapt well to the image. As sound techniques were perfected, dubbing gained ground. In 1929, the first dubbing in Spanish took place in Hollywood, in the film “Río Rita”. From then on, some details were resolved, not insignificant for the public: the issue of accent, it was important that a film be dubbed in the accent closest to that of the viewing public (the dubbing of “Río Rita” had objections in Spain, since it was made by South Americans, which was not very popular). The other issue was that the big stars kept the same voice in different movies, that is, that they were dubbed by the same people. In this Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer took the initiative, dubbing not only its films, but also those of other studios, guaranteeing a wide cast of actors.

The beginning of dubbing therefore had significant costs, since in the early stages dubbing was recorded directly on a photographic strip on celluloid, which required that all the interpreters had to be present at the same time and that if one made a mistake , they had to start over, with high expenses of time and money. Later, the magnetic tape appeared, independent of celluloid and cheaper, since it could be used several times. And more recently, the digital stage has revolutionized and greatly facilitated the work and the initial costs of dubbing.

Evidently, dubbing opened up an important repertoire of possibilities for the interpreters, who had to have not only the correct and fluent knowledge of the source language and the target language, but also the ability to adapt to the peculiarities of the dubbed character. Dubbing a histrionic actor is not the same as dubbing a peculiar comedian, each one has its own parts.

All this reinforces the growing importance of professional translation, interpretation and dubbing services. Dubbing has also been growing in the entertainment and video game industries, allowing more and more people to appreciate content in their native language. Dubbing in general terms allows the content to be appropriate and to be accepted in the culture of each country in the world, by eliminating these language barriers, industries are allowed to grow and globalize. At LingoCall we provide dubbing services for videos, movies, games and video clips in more than 25 languages, contact us right now and we will gladly make a quote according to the needs of your business.

The importance of professional translation and interpreting services for a quality assurance and risk mitigation system in a company. Humanity is living the so-called “age of knowledge”, characterized by enormous scientific and technological advances, in a globalized world, in which human beings have more facility than ever in history to access or transfer information and interact with other people from almost anywhere on the planet. Currently, for example, a young person in India can provide customer service, by phone or digitally, to someone located in Italy. From a smartphone, of which there are billions in the world, a person has access to more information than a president of the United States of America could have had in the sixties.

This new reality, linked to the dynamics of the increasingly competitive economy, leads to the search for more and better means to act efficiently and succeed. That is why successful companies or organizations make every effort to guarantee efficient and excellent services, which involves anticipating, avoiding or reducing risks or threats that may arise at any time.

Like everything in life, no one, not even companies or institutions, large or small, are exempt from risks, they are all exposed to internal and external eventualities, which, if not managed well, can seriously affect the work that they perform. That is why in recent years quality assurance and risk mitigation systems have been developed, in order to be able to anticipate the facts and prevent their processes from being affected.

Basically modern systems rely on five steps:

  • Acceptance of the risk, it is accepted that the risk could occur and based on this, an action plan is created focused on what could happen;
  • Risk mitigation seeks to reduce the probability of a risk occurring or reduce the impact that it could cause within the company. What this means is that, if it occurs, the effects will not be as great, because there is already a strategy for its implementation;
  • Transfer of risk, is when the risk is transmitted to another area of ​​the organization or to a subsidiary company;
  • Exploitation of risk, is when it is seen as an opportunity, in this case it is not sought to mitigate or eliminate it, but on the contrary, it is about the company focusing on the problem and getting the most out of it. This can bring about the appointment of qualified personnel, greater investment or the creation of a plan that helps prevent it from happening again; and
  • Elimination of risk, although most of the time it does not happen, sometimes companies manage to eliminate the risk definitively. When does this happen? It occurs when the forecast work has managed to successfully implement the solution by obtaining key data, supporting experts, adding extra resources or making improvements within the already agreed plan.

With all of the above said, it is worth saying that quality or risk prevention systems must necessarily consider effective and efficient communication as an aspect of special attention. Particularly, where the interaction with people, companies or institutions with a different language is increasingly common and many times absolutely necessary. This is where professional translation and interpreting services take on importance, and become even more relevant in the face of the specialization process that humanity has been developing.

In an increasingly specialized world, mastering a language does not necessarily mean knowing all the technical and professional terms properly. This is why hiring professional and experienced translators and interpreters can help mitigate a large number of risks in companies. The use of professional translators for translation or interpretation requires the translator to put himself in the place of the person who sends the message, that is, the specialist, and assume their same skills. In this way, to fulfill its role as communication intermediary, it must assimilate knowledge of the subject and its specificity.

It is important to remember that audiovisual translation is the process by which the content of audiovisuals is translated to transmit information through visual or acoustic media. In this type of translation, each word must make sense in a context, time and tone. Among the translation services is dubbing, which consists of replacing the dialogues in an audiovisual production in its original version with dialogues in another language. Trying to make it as natural as possible and that it makes sense with what is being seen in the production. It is used in movies, series, animations, etc. Below are dubbing errors that have occurred in major movies and series:

– In the movie Slumdog Millionaire (2008), in its original language the word “torch” is used, which should be translated as “flashlight” and was wrongly translated as “torch”. The error was more serious when in the film people are clearly seen holding flashlights and not torches.

– Another error occurred in the film Blade Runner (1982) the dubbing says in Spanish “I think, Sebastian, that’s what I am” when in English it is saying “I think, Sebastian, therefore I am”. The correct translation would be “I think, therefore I am”.

– In the film Matrix (1999) units were translated as “agents” instead of “units”. In addition, in the film a policeman affirms that two agents were sent and later four appear.

– In the Norwegian dubbed version of Star Wars, lightsaber was translated as “light sabers” since light was confused with “light” and was not related to light.

-In the movie Terminator Genesis there is a serious error, because when the father finds out that John is his son, he gets upset and says “Why didn’t you tell me that you are my FATHER?”. It’s clearly a serious mistake as it doesn’t make sense with what people are seeing in the movie.

– In the well-known series Friends there are also several translation errors, for example in a sentence of the character Ross he says “Why, does it look like I’m having trouble with my misshapen claw?”, this was translated by “Why than? Do you think I have a problem with my “claw fracture”?” when it should have been translated as “Why? Does it seem that I have problems with my misshapen claw? Also in another episode Chandler says “Honey, we’ve been over this”, translated by a “heaven, we already did everything”, when the ideal would have been to translate it by a “heaven, we have already talked about this”.

Undoubtedly dubbing is a job that requires a lot of responsibility, the context of production must be analyzed in the best way to be able to do a good job. Expert translators are able to avoid these mistakes and give meaning and context to the translation. This is why audiovisual producers must always make quality dubbing a priority in their productions, since it is known that one of these errors can have many consequences.

Language services throughout history. The existence of various languages ​​and civilizations makes linguistic services one of the oldest activities of humanity. As the different civilizations came into contact with each other, interpretation and translation services began to be necessary. Interpretation first, as it is an oral process that allows what is said in one language to be transferred to another, and translation later, once writing and the need to pass a written text in one language to another have arisen.

Despite how “ancient” language services may be, for a long time this profession was not recognized as such, nor was it given the importance it has now. This was seen as a collateral service, which did not allow an exhaustive study of its role throughout history. Its recognition was progressive, and it is closely linked to the increasingly frequent, transcendent and formal interaction between individuals and societies with different languages. It is not until the modern era, around 1950, with the Nuremberg Trials and the rise of international organizations, including the United Nations, that language services gain recognition as an academic specialty.

As mentioned above, it is not easy to identify the origins of this profession. In the great empires of antiquity, the translator or interpreter played an almost anonymous role. Despite these limitations, here are some facts that show its appearance at different times in human history:

Language services in ancient civilizations:

There are testimonies of linguistic mediators for more than 5,000 years, playing important roles in Egypt and Assyria, whether as commercial guides, conquest expeditions or war conflicts and in government administration. In ancient Egypt, the governors of the bordering regions with Sudan were called, with the title of “Chief of Interpreters”, for their role in the expeditions that were made to new lands.

Initially linguistic intermediation was assigned to slaves or hostages, but over time it began to designate children of the Egyptian nobility, educated abroad or the children of foreign princes. There is also a lot of evidence of language services in ancient Greece and Rome. Although in Greece they did not enjoy the language services as much, since the Greeks considered themselves superior to other cultures or subjugated peoples, in the case of Rome they did play a key role in the construction of the Empire, greatly facilitating the relationship with the colonies and lands conquered.

Definitely one of the factors that gave greater impetus to translation activity was faith, Judaism, Christianity and Islam. When Hebrew disappeared as the main religious language, and Greek and Roman cultures took power, great interest was generated in translating religious texts. Then the first Greek translations of Old Testament books are given, and later to Latin by the Romans. Undoubtedly, the Bible has been the most important text in the growth of translation. It has been translated into multiple languages. In the fourth century, the most widespread version was made, which was called the Vulgate, made by Saint Jerome, patron saint of translators, and which was used for centuries in the Christian religion.

It is important to mention the expansion of the Arab empire, during the Middle Ages and up to the 15th century, as a factor that contributed to linguistic services through the translation of scientific or philosophical texts from Greek. It was during the Arab reign in the Iberian Peninsula when there was a golden period for translation.

The role of the interpreter was also crucial in the conquest of the New World. During this time one of the first interpreters of the time is known: Malinche. The story goes that this Aztec princess, who spoke both Mayan and Nahuatl, was handed over to the conqueror Hernán Cortés after the battle of Centla. Thanks to her bilingualism, she was an interpreter, counselor and intermediary for Cortés and helped in the process of Moctezuma’s accusation and his subsequent execution.

Language services in the Modern and Contemporary Age:

In the fifteenth century, with the arrival of the printing press, translation experienced an enormous boost that continues to this day. Until the 18th century and the so-called Peace of Westphalia, Latin was the hegemonic language of this time, it is from then on that French became the official language of diplomacy until the end of the First World War. Already in the 19th century, the United States began to reveal itself as a great economic power, and English was gaining ground. As a consequence, the importance of interpreters was increased in the political and economic spheres, and for the first time they ceased to be anonymous.

The interwar period:

This period will be the prelude and, therefore, the origin of language services as they are currently known. The role of the conference interpreter emerged and the relevance of the profession reached its historical peak. Its genesis, therefore, was in the First World War. At this time, a need arose for people who could serve as liaisons between military units that spoke different languages. War interpreters appeared, whose role was crucial in the course of the war. Some of them acted as mediators at the Paris Peace Conference in 1919, in which the representatives of the four victorious countries met to discuss a series of issues that culminated in the well-known Treaty of Versailles and the founding of the Society of nations

In these meetings, the English and French languages ​​were considered official, and the interpreters were in charge of transmitting the speeches of the speakers through consecutive interpretation. The role of these interpreters was crucial, and for the first time their names went down in history and the importance of the interpreter’s trade was raised. One of them, Antoine Velleman, later founded the Geneva School of Interpreters, and another, Jean Herbert, was in charge of recruiting the first team of professional interpreters for the first General Assembly of the then League of Nations.

In 1926, moreover, the first patent for simultaneous interpretation equipment appeared. The system was called “Hushaphone Filene-Finley IBM” and was used for the first time in the International Labor Conference of 1927. Later, in the assemblies of the League of Nations of 1931 and 1932, an attempt was made to verify the validity of the interpretation process. simultaneously, although the system will not finish taking shape until ten years later.

The Nuremberg Trials and simultaneous interpretation:

After the end of World War II, the allied nations launched a series of legal proceedings with the aim of determining and punishing the responsibilities of leaders, officials and collaborators of Hitler’s National Socialist regime. In this process, known as the Nuremberg Trials, the four winning countries and the losing country participated: the United States, Great Britain, the Soviet Union and France on the one hand, and Germany on the other. It is not surprising that, given such linguistic diversity, the effectiveness of consecutive interpreting was questioned, which also predicts an infinite time duration. It was therefore proposed to use the method of simultaneous interpretation, which would ultimately be chosen and would give rise to the already well-known job of conference interpreter. Evidently, from then until now, the evolution and development of this type of interpretation has been amazing, not only in terms of the elements used today to carry out this work (booths, microphones, equipment), but also in terms of the preparation, training and professionalism of the interpreters. Now, globalization and the internet have brought translation and interpreting in tools to streamline it into a complex age where professionalization is more important than ever.

Medical Devices – Translation Requirements. The medical device regulations are the rules that companies must follow in order to sell medical products in the European Union. All these regulations are to ensure the quality of the products and also ensure that the translation requirements are met. As of 2021, they implemented a rule that says that manufacturers who do not comply with the new regulation would be forced to withdraw their products from all EU countries. There has been a lot of confusion about how to comply with these new regulations, therefore in this post some of the key articles of the regulation are explained and recommendations are given to minimize the impact of these regulations. Some of the key highlights of the articles are:

  • It is essential that any product information and documentation is provided in an official EU language. In addition, the instructions for use and packaging must be included in the language of the country where the device is sold.
  • If a product is going to be private labeled or repackaged all restrictions apply, this means that an appropriate quality management system must be in place to ensure that all business units follow translation requirements.
  • Healthcare professionals and patients must be provided with information that identifies the product, the manufacturer, the shelf life of the product and any extra steps or instructions, this information must be provided in the language of the country in which the product was sold. .
  • The declaration of conformity must be translated into an official EU language (English is one of the official EU languages).
  • All information about the clinical performance and safety of the device must be clearly written and made public through Eudamed.
  • The EU establishes a system that captures clinical investigations, the information supplied to the system must be presented in the language of the country involved in the investigation.

Manufacturers must take steps to mitigate risks as failure to comply with these new regulations could lead to company products being withdrawn from the market. Therefore, for the impact of these requirements, it is first recommended to have a rapid communication plan for corrective actions in multiple languages ​​and to establish response times with suppliers in the event of an urgent situation. It is also recommended that contracted providers have a quality control platform, with adequate documentation and corrective action procedures. And it must be ensured that providers comply with translation standard operating procedures.

The translation provider should be required to have a full audit trail for each project undertaken. This document must include an audit trail of the translators and editors involved in the project, the names of the documents, the relevant dates of the project, and an affidavit of accuracy. It is also important to ensure that the translation provider maintains the reading level as written by the manufacturer. This is essential since the articles of the regulation reinforced that each document must be written to maximize the level of understanding on the part of the foreseen.

The translation should be as transparent as possible, if you are paying for the service you should have a full understanding of the steps and tools that are being used to provide it, including the quality control steps that follow. It is important to have a provider that has transparent prices; however, the most important thing is that they do a high-quality job and meet all the requirements.

Translation of Standard Operating Procedures. Without a doubt, precision is crucial for success in the medical and pharmaceutical industry. Poorly manufactured medical products can seriously damage a company’s reputation, which is why it is essential to apply Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) in companies to ensure quality control. These procedures are step-by-step instructions to document work routines or specific activities of a process and ensure their quality.

 Some companies decide to subcontract the manufacture of products to companies in foreign countries, which is why the translation of the processes must be carried out in the best way. The company to which the production is being subcontracted must have all the information so that the final product is always exactly the same. This is why the translated information must remain precise and the processes must be clear so that the standards can be met. Hiring professional translators who have experience in these matters brings benefits to the company, including:

  • The company ensures that the translation of the standard operating procedures is correct: With the work of a translator, errors in the original document that may not have been identified before can be corrected. For example, there may be very open sentences that lend themselves to multiple interpretations. It is also possible that in the original translation there are omissions of certain steps, which may be obvious for some but for others these small omissions can lead to errors. All the problems must be pointed out by the translator and corrected in order to carry out the translation of the documents in the most precise way. The translator must also identify and find the best way to translate any colloquial phrases or jargon implemented in the original text.
  • A correct explanation of the processes is given: The fundamental rule for carrying out this type of translation is that when the processes are being translated, they must be described in the way they will appear to the operator. For example, when a knob or button is labeled in the original language, it must appear this way in the document being translated, respecting the language and even the capitalization used. Any language the operator sees on the screen, regardless of their spoken language, must be identical to what is described in the converted SOP.
  • Proper management of terminology is given: The extensive terminology used in the pharmaceutical industry is one of the main reasons why having professional translators is essential. The translator must have experience and knowledge of the terms and standards in order to carry out a good translation. First of all, the translator must take into account that although many of the terms must be translated, there are also some that are used internationally, therefore they must be left in the original language. Also, as shown above, the translator must have knowledge of the regulations, know the applicable pharmaceutical standards in their country and be sure that they are met. It is also important that the translator pays attention to trademark names that may or may not be internationally recognized. Lastly, the translator must also have knowledge of the abbreviations used in the industry and know if there are equivalent abbreviations in the language into which the translation is being made.

Training your staff in their own language is part of your Quality Assurance and Risk Mitigation System

All this confirms the importance of having professional translators with the necessary experience and knowledge when translating these important documents. Especially when it comes to industries such as pharmaceuticals, in which many regulations and standards must be taken into account, it is essential that a good translation be carried out, companies of this type cannot risk receiving lawsuits or damaging their reputation due to problems. of translation.

5 of the worst translation mistakes in ad campaigns. Interpretation and translation work is not easy, but when it comes to investing large amounts of money in advertising campaigns, it is certainly a job that should be prioritized. Companies always want their campaigns to be successful and to give a good image, therefore, translation errors cannot occur. This is why, during the creation process, it must be taken into account how the advertising campaign will be seen and perceived when it reaches other countries with different languages ​​and cultures.

These errors can occur either due to a lack of communication within the company, due to the hiring of unqualified translators or due to the use of automatic translators. This type of error can be avoided if you have professional translators for the respective languages ​​in which the campaign will be carried out. You have to be very careful when making these translations, especially when talking about very large companies whose advertising is going to reach millions of people from different countries and a large amount of resources are going to be used. It is essential that there is a group of people in charge of the revision to confirm that all the texts are linguistically correct, are coherent and are free of spelling errors or idioms that compromise the culture of the regions targeted by the campaign. Some of the famous errors in advertising campaigns are:

  • HSBC: In 2009 the bank spent millions on its “Assume Nothing” campaign. It was pretty good in America, however when it was brought abroad it was translated as “Don’t do anything”. After this, the company had to invest around 10 million dollars in a rebranding campaign to solve this error.
  • Pepsi: In a marketing campaign during the years 1963 to 1967 Pepsi took out the slogan “Come living with Pepsi”. In Spanish and English this slogan made sense, the problem was when it reached the Asian market. Here it was incorrectly translated as “Pepsi will bring your ancestors back from the dead.” This clearly was not the image that the company wanted to be given with the advertising campaign.
  • Mango: In 2014 the Spanish fashion company Mango described a collection of bracelets and necklaces as “slaves”. This term is often used in Spain and in certain Latin American countries to describe a type of bracelet. However, in France the proper translation was not carried out and the term slave was used as the person who does not have freedom and is dominated by another, tarnishing the image of the brand in this country.
  • Ford: The company launched an advertising campaign in Belgium in which it wanted to highlight the quality of its cars through the slogan “Every car has high-quality bodywork.” By an unprofessional translation the slogan reached the target country as “Every car has a high-quality carcass”.
  • KFC: Many know the famous KFC slogan “Finger lickin’ good”. In 1987, when the company opened its doors in China and after investing a large amount of money in advertising and products, they realized that this expression was not common in this country and its translation read “Eat your fingers”.

These five cases are a clear example of the importance of hiring professional translators, with high linguistic knowledge and mastery of the languages and cultures of the countries in which the campaign will be carried out. The work of the translators not only ensures that they correct grammatical errors, they are also in charge of ensuring that the message is coherent and that it is culturally accepted in the destination country. In cases of international campaigns, it is advisable to hire native translators or interpreters from each of the regions where the message is going to be carried. They already have a high knowledge of the jargon and customs of the country, therefore they can determine the best way to translate the message. By hiring native interpreters, companies make sure that there are no errors like the ones mentioned above.

5 of the worst translation and interpretation mistakes in history. Undoubtedly, translation and interpretation are not easy tasks. You must have high knowledge not only of the respective languages, but also of culture, history and certain productive sectors. Languages ​​can be very complex and you don’t always have the exact words to translate from one language to another. There are also very similar words that have totally different meanings. All this only demonstrates the important and complex work of translators and interpreters.

The internet is full of bad translations made by automatic translators and we have probably come across them more than once. However, there are translation and interpretation errors that have been so serious that they have changed the history of the world. When it comes to important situations, business, medicine, law, etc. It is essential to have good translators who prevent any mistakes from being made. Some of these errors that have come to change history are:

  • The word that set off the atomic bomb: In 1945 the Allied powers published the Potsdam Declaration, demanding redemption from Japan. After this, the Japanese Prime Minister called a press conference in which he replied “No comment. We are still thinking about it.” The interpretation problem was that he used the word “mokusatsu” which can mean “without comment” or “we ignore and despise him”. The allies understood it as “we ignore and despise it”, therefore ten days later the United States dropped the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
  • The horns of Moses: For many centuries Christian artists drew and sculpted Moses with horns. This is because Saint Jerome, the saint who translated the Bible from Hebrew and Greek into Latin, confused the word “karan” which means resplendent or radiant in Hebrew, with “keren” which means horned. Although this did not make sense, it was maintained for many years since no one doubted the sacred text.
  • Nikita Khrushchev Threat: During the Cold War in 1956, Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev made a speech at the Polish embassy in Moscow. During his speech he expressed “Like it or not, history is on our side. We will bury them!” This was interpreted by the Western press as a threat, so the Soviets had to explain that it was just a misunderstanding. The correct translation of the speech was a reference to the ‘Communist Manifesto’ in which it is mentioned that the bourgeoisie produces its own gravediggers.
  • Jimmy Carter’s speech in Poland: In 1997, US President Jimmy Carter made a trip to Poland in which he made a speech to the Polish people. For which, the hired interpreter made a very bad interpretation, giving a sexual tone to the speech. Jimmy Carter said “I have come to know your opinions and listen to your wishes for the future” and the interpreter implied that the president had sexual desires for the Poles. Also, when he expressed how happy he was to be in Poland he translated it as “being happy to see the private parts of Poland”.
  • Giovanni Schiaparelli and the channels on Mars: In 1877, Giovanni Schiaparelli made one of the first descriptions of the surface of Mars. He spoke of seeing “seas,” “continents,” and “canals.” In 1908, Percival Lowell reviewed the work and concluded that the canals had been built by intelligent beings to carry water. Although this came from a translation error, it unleashed madness for the Martians. The Italian astronomer never referred to the canals of Mars as constructions. He had used the Italian word “canali” referring to a wholly natural structure like gorges or canyons.

The problem of automatic translators. Without a doubt, automatic translators improve over time, however, they are not a substitute for professional translation and interpretation. The vice-dean of the Faculty of Translation and Interpretation of Granada, Jan-Hendrik Opdenhoff mentioned that “Perhaps the day will come when machine translation will take away the jobs of professionals, but it is not imminent. Their big problem is the context: the machines do not know the world”. Machine translators don’t know about literature, culture, grammar or history.

Automatic translation is undoubtedly revolutionary, it allows us to translate texts in seconds, understand completely unknown languages ​​from a mobile phone, etc. It’s fast, cheap and easy to use, but it has its limits. Some of its limitations are:

– Lack of quality and precision: When it comes to achieving quality and precision to transmit a message, machine translation technology cannot offer it. Machine translators cannot check sentence by sentence to write it in the most concrete way. Therefore, these are most effective when used to get an overview or translate a short text, not for larger or important documents. Said technology cannot accurately recognize which is the appropriate idiomatic turn when a word has several meanings according to the context, the subject, the industry and the sector in which the content to be translated deals with.

– It has no context: Technology cannot understand the way in which a mistranslated word or phrase can alter the meaning of a message. They take the message very literally and are not able to translate it in a way that makes sense in context.

– Technicalities and jargon: The technicalities and jargon of certain sectors are terms that automatic translators are not capable of detecting and understanding. On the other hand, professional translators know the language of the different sectors and find suitable words to translate it into a foreign language.

– Limits on formats: Generally, in automatic translators there are limits on file sizes. If you want to translate an audio or a handwritten document, it cannot be done with this technology.

– Lack of expertise: Contrary to professional translators, with an automatic translator you will not be able to obtain expertise in the topics. Professional translators are experts in certain languages ​​or even in specific industries or sectors.

This refers especially to translators of written content. In the case of interpretation (oral translation of content) the situation is even more difficult for automatic translators, called interpreting machines, since interpreting is not only orally translating the words that the other person is saying, it is a much more difficult task. Complex and sophisticated.

Interpreters need a deep level of knowledge in both the source and target languages. If they can’t follow the context of the conversation, they won’t be able to paraphrase it in a way that preserves its meaning. For this reason, professional interpreters must be fluent in both languages. Because they work orally, interpreters can speak fluently. In addition, they must know the customs, regionalisms and oral colloquialisms of each language. However, they do not interpret the message word by word.

If one tried to directly translate a sentence from one language to another in real time, the original meaning could not be conveyed clearly and it would become confusing for both parties. Instead, the most important technique of interpretation is paraphrasing. Interpreters listen to spoken words, understand their meaning, and transform them into new words in the target language.

Subject matter expertise is also an important part of an interpreter’s skill set. Familiarity with a certain topic is an advantage when engaging in highly technical conversations, especially when parties use different words or acronyms for certain terms.

On the other hand, performers must convey the feel and tone of the original content. It is about transmitting a message in the most reliable way, including moods and even what is meant by body and facial expressions and the emotions transmitted. Last but not least, there are four aspects that must be considered in order to better understand the dynamics between machine and human translation:

  1. Possibly that the acceptance and comfort of users, whether they are readers or listeners, is greater when they know that they are being assisted by a human being and not by a machine. Especially when the topics to be discussed are medical, legal or business. It is difficult to find a person who wants to sign an automatically translated contract, without any human intervention to ensure a reliable, assertive and adequate translation, worse still, in a verbal negotiation where there is a much higher risk of miscommunication.
  2. The cultural aspect of feeling assisted by a translator or interpreter who knows the culture, customs and jargon of both parties in the communication process is very relevant for users.
  3. There is always the doubt of whether the translator or interpreting machine is doing the job correctly.
  4. In the case of interpreting machines, it has been confirmed that they are very effective for short and simple translations, such as telling a taxi driver the direction we want to go, but not for interpreting a keynote speech. For example, interpreting a negotiation, or medical or legal assistance, which involves a much higher risk of miscommunication. In fact, the insurance industry is a constraint for automatic translators and interpreting machines to prevail and replace human language assistance. The risk of using artificial intelligence to replace translators and/or interpreters is too high and can have very large economic, legal and reputational implications that the insurance industry cannot accept. This industry will always seek to reduce the associated risk. For example, in Mexico many people say foot to the leg. What happens if in a medical service or procedure an interpreting machine translates as foot and not as leg, and as a result the diagnosis or medical procedure is wrong and serious complications arise? Who pays? The insurer?

Undoubtedly, automatic translators and interpreting machines have their advantages. They are fast, cheap and are good at translating short texts. However, a professional translator is irreplaceable. These are capable of translating the texts adequately, fully knowing the appropriate words so as not to lose the context. In the case of companies, it is necessary to have professional translators in order to improve their image and provide quality to their documents and contracts. A good translation can generate high profits when looking for international business partners.

Video Dubbing and its importance. Dubbing is the process of replacing the dialogue lines of an audiovisual production in its original version with dialogues in another language. Its objective is that the production can be understood by other people. The voice actors must make the dubbing as natural as possible and that it makes sense with what is being seen in the production. This is why it is necessary to adopt expressions, lip sync and take into account the cultural context.

There are several types of dubbing, among them are:

  • Interpretive locution: Most dubbing is done post-production; however, this is done live through a voice that is not exactly the same as the original. This type of dubbing uses the “Voice-Over” technique where a voice is broadcast over the original, an example of this is when one person speaks on the news and the other does the live dubbing.
  • Documentary dubbing: Documentary dubbing varies from the conventional as the tone is usually more relaxed and slower. A voice is used that explains and narrates everything that happens in the documentary. The objective of the dubbing actor is to raise awareness of the subject and convey emotions.
  • Video game dubbing: This type of dubbing is considered relatively new since before video games only had electronic fill sounds and text boxes, over time this has been changing. The dubbing actors take the audio of the original dialogues together with the script as a reference and manage to give context based on the tonalities used.
  • Animated Dubbing: In animated dubbing, voice actors must do the job of imagining the tone, laughter, and the way the characters speak. Real photographs of the characters making gestures and pronouncing different syllables are taken as reference.

The dubbing industry has been growing and as it could be seen before, not only to dub movies but also series, animations, testimonials, reality shows, etc. It is known that many productions also have subtitles that undoubtedly help to eliminate language barriers. However, many viewers prefer dubbing as it allows them to fully focus on the production without any distractions. In addition, many consider that being able to appreciate this foreign content dubbed into their language gives a sense of security. Without a doubt, in an increasingly globalized world, it is essential that audiovisual producers take dubbing into account for their films. This way you can reach many more viewers. The children’s sector, for example, is one of the sectors that benefits greatly from dubbing since children do not know how to read, much less understand foreign languages. Another sector that is greatly benefited are people with visual difficulties, since through audio they can adequately understand the production