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By Mari D. González
Jaap spoke about the changes to and implications of the translation process as new translation technologies and online communication become more prevalent and accessible. He emphasized that translation is one of the basic needs of human civilization, thus we need the help of computers.
Topics and questions Jaap discussed include:
- Translation companies, like other businesses, are in need of a new strategy.
- How do incoming text messages get translated?
- Does “one translation fits all” still apply?
- The consumer is involved by asking and getting responses from each other.
- Translations are being supplemented with volunteers or done via “crowdsourcing,” in which a project is “outsourced to the crowd.” People respond to an open invitation to collaborate and work as one community. Facebook crowd sourced the translation of its page to different languages.
Jaap concluded that the “top-down globalization, export mentalityis phasing out.” Translating is no longer a requirement fulfilled by an individual or a specialized team. The new translation process is CIRCULAR, on going, customized, and user driven.
As a result, companies have to take notice of the end user who is generating content, contributing, translating, and adding new vocabulary.
Last year, the August 13, 2010, Huffington Post’s Huffpost Tech, listed the following countries as the top Facebook users:
This year, as of July 5, Check Facebook, a Facebook marketing statistics site, contains a slightly different list of top Facebook countries:
What makes these countries top users?
- extensive access to Internet
- high population numbers
- users’ affinity for U.S. culture
- familiarity with the English language
- a high number of young users
- or, a combination of some or all these variables.
If you follow Internet use around the world, you might be familiar with the popularity of other social network sites such as Google’s Orkut in India and Brazil. With Brazil making this year’s list, one can speculate that users are moving from Orkut to Facebook. Yet, only 31.46% of Brazilian online users are on Facebook.
As for Indonesia, Turkey, Mexico, and the Philippines, 100% of online users are on Facebook, which means no other social-network or online communication platform is competing.
Why isn’t China on the list? China’s government prevents Internet users in China from accessing Facebook. The most popular site in China is RenRen, which can be accessed in the U.S. and is supported by U.S. investors.
Another question: Are the top 10 Facebook countries selected based on the percentage of each country’s total population of active online users or on the total number of users?
For example, 30% of Mexico’s total population (112,322,757 x .3 = 33,696,825) are Facebook users but 70% of Canada’s (34,507,000 x .7 = 24,154,900). It appears that Mexico made the list based on population-number advantage, and Canada was dropped because of its smaller population.
Edited by Connie Cobb