In today’s multi-cultural society there is a growing demand to localise and provide translated versions for everything from road signs to menu’s, yet some people are still getting lost in translation!
Whether machine or human translated, care must be taken not to translate literally, yet many translators and translation companies are still failing to provide high quality translations.
Here are some of the most hilarious translation bloopers and mistranslations from around the web:
From an East African newspaper:
A new swimming pool is rapidly taking shape since the contractors have thrown in the bulk of their workers.
In a Zurich Hotel:
Because of the impropriety of entertaining guests of the opposite sex in the bedroom, it is suggested that the lobby be used for this purpose.
Would you buy a coat from this Furrier in Sweden?
Fur coats made for ladies from their own skin.
I would be worried booking a ticket with this airline in Copenhagen:
We take your bags and send them in all directions.
In a Norwegian cocktail lounge:
Ladies are requested not to have children in the bar.
At a Budapest zoo:
Please do not feed the animals. If you have any suitable food, give it to the guard on duty.
However, if you are going to localise for your foreign guests then get it right, unlike this hotel in Majorca:
English well talking – Here speeching American
And finally, be careful when translating your product slogans:
Swedish vacuum-cleaner manufacturer Electrolux used the following in an American campaign: “Nothing sucks like an Electrolux.”
These bloopers may be funny, but relying on poor quality translations can be fatal for targeting international markets. Global Voices provides high quality translations and localization for businesses targetting international markets, making sure your product and slogans won’t get lost in translation.