The Creative World of Transcreation and Copywriting
Transcreation remains a field where a talented translator's human, creative touch is highly valued. If you have the skills and a flair for marketing, then this specialty might be for you.
Join presenter Kate Deimling in this 60-minute ATA webinar to explore transcreation. You'll learn how to develop expertise in the field and get an insider's view into the market. Kate will also touch on the related field of copywriting. Real-world examples, including transcreating in social media, will be used to illustrate key points in the presentation.
Presenter: Kate Deimling
Date: March 26, 2019
Time: 12 noon U.S. Eastern Daylight Time
Duration: 60 minutes
CE Point(s): 1 ATA-approved
Click to learn more and register!
About the presenter
Kate Deimling is an ATA-certified French>English translator, specializing in transcreation and copywriting with a focus on luxury brands. She manages Pen and Ink Art Translations, a boutique translation agency for arts and museums. Previously, she was the New York correspondent for the French art newspaper Le Journal des Arts and an in-house translator for ARTINFO.com.
Afghan Interpreters Win the Right to Bring Families to Britain
Forces Network (United Kingdom) (03/08/19)
Around 30 Afghan interpreters who helped the British Army fight the Taliban have won the right to bring their families to Britain.
It's estimated that around 3,000 Afghan interpreters risked their lives to help British soldiers. Working closely on the ground with British service personnel, these interpreters also became cultural advisers and friends to many who served alongside them. After the withdrawal of the British military, some interpreters relocated to the U.K. However, their families were not permitted to join them because immigration rules stipulated that family members had to travel at the same time, speak English, and prove that they had some level of income. Those rules have now been waived, and advocates say the policy change could save lives.
Colonel Simon Diggins, former defense attaché to Kabul, says he is very pleased. "It's a step in the right direction in terms of looking after the families of those interpreters already in this country and giving the families the right to come to the U.K.," Diggins says. "The previous policy effectively excluded family members, which didn't really reflect the nature of society and Afghan life."
"We owe these unsung heroes a huge debt of gratitude for their service," says U.K. Home Secretary Sajid Javid. "That is why we are making it even easier for them to build their future here in the U.K. with their loved ones."
The changes to the immigration rules are expected to take effect April 6.
Demand for Court Interpreters in Tennessee Signals Shift in Government Prosecutions
NBC 10 NEWS (TN) (03/05/19) North, John; Sullivan, Cole
Federal courts in Tennessee have seen a sharp increase in the demand for Spanish interpreters, which authorities say is the result of more illegal immigration cases.
According to the Tennessee County Clerk's Office, in 2015, the Eastern District of Tennessee recorded 30 criminal cases that required an interpreter because the defendant couldn't speak English. In 2018, that number jumped to 102.
"Our need for interpreters has increased rather dramatically, particularly over the past year," says John Medearis, U.S. District Court clerk for Eastern Tennessee. Medearis says a large number of cases involve immigrants entering the U.S. illegally, which means interpreters are required to explain the charges to defendants who don't speak English.
Mike Whalen, a defense attorney for more than 20 years in the Knoxville area, says prosecutors are being pressured by the U.S. Department of Justice to bring these cases to court. He feels the government is pursuing unnecessary prosecutions that typically result in a six-month punishment.
To accommodate the demand for more interpreters, Medearis and his staff have had to become adept schedulers. They don't have their own interpreter on the payroll and finding qualified interpreters takes time. Medearis emphasizes that not just anyone who speaks another language can serve as a federal interpreter. Those interpreting on behalf of the government face rigorous certification.
For some court dates, such as initial appearances, the clerk can tap a federal network of interpreters available remotely by telephone through the state's telephone interpreting program. This program can save the district clerk's office money for routine hearings, but when a non-English-speaking defendant pleads guilty or goes to trial, a live interpreter must be present. Medearis says trying to balance the need for interpreters with a court's busy docket "can be very challenging."
It's not unusual for the process of pleading out a case to take several months in federal court. In the meantime, the defendant is often being held in jail as an inmate at taxpayer expense. Whalen says there's added pressure to speed up the process, which can be taxing on the federal court machinery. "Anyone charged in this country is constitutionally guaranteed a fair trial, which means special measures may have to be taken for someone who doesn't speak English," Whalen says. "Such an aggressive pursuit of illegal residents costs money and ties up an already busy court system, and it doesn't make sense economically."
The federal immigration system faces a backlog of cases across much of the country. Whalen, who has lived and worked in Mexico, says millions of people are working in the U.S. illegally. "But that's not going to change just because people are now being rounded up and charged for being in the country illegally," Whalen says. "The nation's immigration problem is much more complicated than that, and 'Go away' is not an answer," he adds. "It doesn't work. It hasn't worked. It will never work."
Sign Language Translating Devices Are Cool. But Are They Useful?
Smithsonian (02/19) Matchar, Emily
Researchers at Michigan State University (MSU) are developing a small device with a motion capture system they hope will be able to translate American Sign Language (ASL) into English to improve communication between people who are deaf or hard of hearing and the hearing world.
Many devices developed for this purpose over the past few decades use gloves to capture the motion of signing, which can be bulky and awkward. The team at MSU says their device is unique because it's glove-less. The technology, called DeepASL, uses a camera device to capture hand motions, then feeds the data through a deep learning algorithm, which matches it to signs in ASL. Unlike many previous devices, DeepASL can translate entire sentences rather than single words and doesn't require users to pause between signs.
"This is a truly non-intrusive technology," says Mi Zhang, a professor of electrical and computer engineering at MSU who lead the research. Zhang feels DeepASL could serve as a digital tutor, giving feedback on whether learners are signing correctly. Zhang adds that the device could be especially useful in emergency situations. Zhang has applied for a patent and hopes to have a device on the market within a year. Because it's based on affordable technology—the Leap Motion capture system retails for $78—it could be more widely accessible than previous efforts.
But Christian Vogler, a professor of communication studies at Gallaudet University, a university for people who are deaf or hard of hearing, is skeptical of devices designed to translate ASL, and his skepticism is shared by many in the deaf community. "Devices generally do not truly 'translate' ASL, but merely recognize hand signs and turn them into an English word per sign," Vogler says. This means key grammatical information is lost, including information about whether a phrase is a question, a negation, or a relative clause. Vogler says that even though DeepASL supposedly translates full sentences, some features of ASL grammar go beyond hand signs. "For example, facial expressions are often used as modifiers, eyebrow raising can turn a phrase into a question, and body positioning can indicate when the ASL user is quoting someone else," he says. "So far, none of the systems have been even remotely useful to people who sign," Vogler says, adding that researchers often seem to have "very little contact with the deaf and hard of hearing community and very little idea of their real needs."
Zhang's team did not test the device on people who were deaf or hard of hearing, but on students in a sign language translation program. Zhang emphasizes that DeepASL is designed to enable only basic communication at this point, and that this is just a starting place. He says his team hopes to extend DeepASL's capabilities in the future to capture facial expressions as well. "That will be the next significant milestone for us to reach," he says.
Vogler says that although it's positive that the MSU technology is using deep learning methods, which have had success with spoken language, it still doesn't capture face and body movements. Vogler thinks researchers should move away from the idea that sign language recognition devices can really meet in-person communication needs. "We have many options for facilitating in-person communication, and until we have something that actually respects the linguistic properties of signed languages and the actual communication behaviors of signers, these efforts will go nowhere near supplanting or replacing them," he says. "Instead, people need to work with actual community members and with people who understand the complexities of signed languages."
A Medieval Arabic Medical Text Was Translated into Irish, Discovery Shows
The Guardian (United Kingdom) (03/07/19) Flood, Alison
An exciting link between medieval Ireland and the Islamic world has been discovered on two sheets of calfskin vellum lodged into the binding of a book from the 1500s. The sheets contain fragments of a rare 15th-century Irish translation of an 11th-century medical encyclopedia called the Canon of Medicine, written by Ibn Sina, a Persian physician.
Ibn Sina was a prolific polymath whose writings included not only medicine, but also theology, astronomy, philosophy, physics, and mathematics, but it was largely the Canon of Medicine that made him an esteemed figure in Europe. The five-volume medical encyclopedia covered the basic principles of medicine and listed around 800 drugs that could be used for treatment. The Canon of Medicine was a core part of the European medical curriculum until the 17th century.
The sheets with the translation had been trimmed, folded, and stitched into the spine of a pocket-sized Latin manual about local administration, which was printed in London in the 1530s. It had been owned by the same family in Cornwall since the 16th century. When the modern-day owners noticed the strange text stitched into the binding, they consulted Pádraig Ó Macháin, a professor of modern Irish at the University College Cork, who realized he was looking at a medieval Irish medical manuscript. Aoibheann Nic Dhonnchadha, an expert in Irish medical texts at the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies, helped identify the fragments as a translation of the Canon of Medicine. "It really was very, very exciting, and one of those moments which makes life worthwhile," Ó Macháin says.
Ó Macháin says finding a bit of the translation is thrilling in part because of its rarity. References to Ibn Sina's encyclopedia appear in Irish medical texts from the medieval period, but the newly discovered fragments are the first to show that it was translated into Irish. The translated fragments cover the physiology of the back, jaw, and nose, and was likely based on a Latin translation of the Arabic original.
At the time the book was written, Ireland was "very much pre-urban," Ó Macháin says. He adds that the fact that Ibn Sina's seminal medical text was translated into Irish shows that the country was also a center of scientific study. "There were great schools of learning here, including medical schools," says Al-Samarrai. "The reason the encyclopedia was translated was that Irish was the language of learning in medieval Ireland, whereas Latin fulfilled that role everywhere else," Ó Macháin says.
So, how did a translation of such an important work end up being used as part of the binding of a Latin text? In the early centuries of printing history, it was not unusual for manuscripts to be used for the binding of other books. Parchment was expensive and it made sense to use recycled material instead of fresh sheets. Ó Macháin says the encyclopedia would probably have been cut up following the Elizabethan conquest of Ireland, which put an end to the old Gaelic society. "Early universities in Ireland supported by the Gaelic lordships fell asunder as the Elizabethan conquest proceeded," Ó Macháin explains. "Books like these were destroyed and others were damaged and cut up, so it's not surprising that the person who came into possession of such a manuscript would think nothing of trimming it and making a binding of it."
The book's owners agreed to have the binding removed and digitally scanned. It can now be seen on the Irish Script on Screen website.
Condolences to Members of AIIC
The International Association of Conference Interpreters (AIIC) lost three of its members in the Ethiopian Airlines crash in Addis Ababa on March 10. Suzan Abul Farag, Esmat Orensa, and Graziella de Luis were traveling to Nairobi to interpret at the UN Environment Assembly.
The UN lost 21 employees in the crash. The UN flag was lowered to half mast on March 11 in honor of the staff who died on the flight. Memorial ceremonies were held at the UN's New York and Geneva offices later in the week. ATA's Interpreters Division has also posted a personal tribute to their colleagues on the Division's home page.
ATA sends its heartfelt wishes and condolences to the family and friends of those who lost their lives.
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Take the Challenge! Become an ATA-Certified Translator!
ATA Certification Exam Prep Workshop
April 12, 2019 | Alexandria, Virginia
Get ready to sit for the ATA Certification exam by attending one or both of these exam prep workshop sessions.
What does ATA certification give you?
• Confirmation of professional level translation skills
• Potential for increased compensation and new business
• Greater visibility in the ATA Directory of Translators and Interpreters
• Recognition of a commitment to the profession and its ethical practices
What do the sessions cover?
How exams are graded, mistakes frequently made by test-takers, and tips to avoid common pitfalls. Actual exam practice tests will be used as examples. Each session is ATA-approved for 3 Continuing Education points.
Discounted registration rates available until March 29. Register now to save!
Session I (9:00am – 12:00pm)
Preparing for the ATA English>Spanish Certification Exam
Instructors: Mercedes De la Rosa-Sherman, CT and Izaskun Orkwis, CT
Learn more and register now!
Session II (2:00pm – 5:00pm)
Preparing for the ATA Spanish>English Certification Exam
Instructors: Jane Maier, CT and Holly Mikkelson, CT
Learn more and register now!
Limited seating! Both workshops are limited to 25 participants to ensure individual attention and an optimal learning experience. These workshops will not be recorded.
Warning: Email Spoof Scam
A new (not so new) email spoofing scam is showing up in the inbox of some ATA members. The email appears to have been sent to you from your own email account. The message demands a Bitcoin ransom payment to release your account. The spoofing is only apparent when you analyze the entire email header. Click to learn how to display email headers.
This scam warning was originally posted to ATA’s Business Practices Listserv by member Carola Berger. Carola is the author of “Translation Scams Reloaded,” published in the July/August 2018 issue of The ATA Chronicle. Members on this listserv often discuss scam attacks. If you’re not on the list, this would be a good time to join!
When it comes to scams, the best defense is a good offense! Learn how scams work and be prepared to hit your delete key.
New! Wordfast Discount for ATA Members
ATA members can now save 15% on the following Wordfast translation memory tools.
Try before you buy. Wordfast offers demo versions of their products, making it possible for you to use Wordfast on actual translation projects before you decide to purchase. Download your free demo versions today!
An MS Word-based translation memory tool designed for translators who wish to work on projects quickly and efficiently inside MS Word.
A platform-independent translation memory tool designed for translators, language services providers, and corporations alike. Wordfast Pro's standalone environment allows for high-speed batch processing as well as the ability to translate a wide variety of file formats. Wordfast Pro also offers powerful tools to handle complex project management tasks.
A bundle that includes Wordfast Classic and Wordfast Pro, two industry-leading tools for one low price.
One deal per member per product. Click here to request your discount code.
Win a Free Registration to ATA's 60th Annual Conference
Enter the ATA School Outreach Contest for a chance to win a free registration to ATA's 60th Annual Conference!
How? Share your career with students, take a photo in the classroom, and submit an entry with a description of your experience.
Think you couldn't possibly do this? Think again. We've got everything you'll want, including PowerPoint presentations, prepared scripts, and ideas to make it fun. The only thing you need is a school—and we've got tips for that, too.
Watch the video, get inspired! You can do this!
Learn more about the School Outreach Contest
• Get the contest details
• Stream the "how-to" step-by-step webinar
• Listen to Episode 11 of The ATA Podcast
Go Local this Spring
The world may have gone global, but there's still nothing like staying local and getting to know people in person.
This spring is a great opportunity to do just that. From Atlanta to St. Paul to Denver to Seattle, there's a local or regional T&I group holding a workshop, training session, or conference in March, April, or May.
So begin to make face-to-face networking part of your business plan. Look for events on ATA's online calendar and on ATA Chapter and Affiliate websites.
AFTI Co-Sponsoring Translation & Interpreting Summer School
The American Foundation for Translation and Interpretation (AFTI), ATA's nonprofit foundation, is co-sponsoring the 2019 Summer School in Translation and Interpreting organized by the American Translation and Interpreting Studies Association (ATISA). The sponsorship is made possible through AFTI's Edith Losa Fund.
This five-day residential summer school for graduate students, faculty, and administrators offers a combination of lectures, roundtables, discussion sessions, and individual tutorials for those interested in designing and implementing translation- and interpreting-related programs, courses, and activities.
This year’s guest professor is Dr. Kelly Washbourne, a professor of Spanish translation at Kent State University. Program tuition and fees: ATISA members $400; non-ATISA members $500.
In the March/April Issue of The ATA Chronicle
ATA at Lenguas 2019 in Mexico City
In late January of this year, just as the U.S. was being hit by extremely low temperatures, ATA Spokesperson Judy Jenner headed to sunny Mexico City to represent ATA at Lenguas 2019, organized by InterpretAmerica and Mexico’s Italia Morayta Foundation. (Judy Jenner)
Educational Interpreting 101: It’s a Lot Harder than It Looks
As school districts across the nation struggle to fulfill language access requirements and the needs of their diverse multilingual families, our profession needs to step up, make space, and provide concrete resources for educational interpreters. (Natalia Abarca, Katharine Allen)
How to Leverage Testimonials When Marketing Your Business
Providing client testimonials is an effective way to market our businesses, but you have to be smart about how you request and use testimonials so that one client’s words can influence the decision-making of another. (Madalena Sánchez Zampaulo)
The “Shall” Conundrum: When Use Becomes Abuse
As drafters and translators, how do we know when we’re abusing “shall”? There are at least three very clear and simple cases of abuse that the author sees in dual language or translated contracts almost every day. (Paula Arturo)
Passives Voices Peace: Reconsidering the Passive Voice in Your Writing
The guardians of the active voice might do well to revisit their disapproval of the passive voice as weak, evasive, or convoluted. (Romina Marazzato Sparano)
Access to The ATA Chronicle's searchable archives is available online! And don't forget to check out the latest issue of the Chronicle Online.
News summaries © copyright 2019 SmithBucklin