The Global Dominance Of English

English language

Because English still holds supreme power in the online world, it is probably the most powerful language in the world  today. It entered the stage in the mid-twentieth century, after World War II, when it replaced French as the common language of diplomacy. English has maintained its supremacy ever since, but it may not continue to dominate forever.  Times are changing, economies are booming, new markets are emerging, and website owners should be on the lookout- you never know when the reign of English may cease. The question emerges: if you decide to localize your site, what would your second choice of language be? Who is challenging the language supremacy of English?

Mandarin Chinese Challenge

It is assumed that Mandarin Chinese is one of the most prominent languages in the world today. According to an estimate that dates back a few years, Mandarin is the mother tongue of nearly 950 million people, which is double the number of native English speakers. Mandarin is spoken by people in China, Singapore and Taiwan, but it has also overtaken English as the most widely used second language in Hong Kong. If we include dialects and local variants, it is clear that Mandarin is a strong language with an enormous base. It is still far from being the most powerful language on the Internet, but it is here to stay, and its importance will probably only increase in the years to come.

Spanish as a Global Force

In addition to Mandarin Chinese, there is Spanish. The importance of Spanish should not be underestimated: it is a language spoken by around 400 million people in Spain, South America (excluding the Portuguese-speaking Brazil), Equatorial Guinea and Western Sahara. In the United States, Spanish is the fourth most widely spoken language and is recognized as the native language of 37 million people, which is around 10% of the country’s population. Due to a massive influx of immigrants from Latin America, Spanish has grown so rapidly in the U.S. that there is a strong demand for professional Spanish tranlation services.  With the global economy changing, it is quite obvious that Spanish will rank high as one of the most in-demand languages for website localization.

Other European Languages

However, Mandarin and Spanish are not alone in the race against English. Strong, highly developed countries are striving towards having websites in their native languages. Germany, France and Russia are such countries. The stronger a country, the greater its need for expressing independence. Although German, French and Russian have fewer native speakers than English, they are still globally recognized and taught around the world as second languages. There are other languages, such as Hindi and Arabic, which have a multitude of native speakers, yet somehow they are not currently getting picked up by the online community.

We live in a world dominated by English, but it doesn’t mean that it is the final lingua franca of civilization. Latin and Greek both served as a lingua franca for centuries, but they are now dead languages.  There are more than 1 billion people speaking English, but only one third of them speak it as their native language. Technological advancements and nationalistic aspirations might easily change the balance of linguistic power in the future.

What To Look For In A Translator

The process of hiring a translator should never be a light-hearted decision.  Many translators and agencies promise perfection and cheap prices but deliver subpar translations and poor customer service. Making your selection of a translation agency or translator even more difficult is the array of paid rating and evaluation services that some translation agencies use to produce an inaccurate positive online reputation.  For these reasons, it is advisable that one should avoid hiring an individual translator, or an agency, before going through a formal decision process.

Hire Native Speakers

First of all, you are strongly advised to hire a certified translator who is a native speaker of your target language–that is crucial. If you have a need to translate something from, let’s say, English to German–your target language is German and you should choose accordingly. If you fail to follow this advice, your end product (final translation) may not be as good as you originally hoped. Therefore, remember never to compromise on this. Native speakers remain the true experts when it comes to knowing a language inside out.

However, hiring a native speaker, or making sure you have a native speaker to deal with a text you need translated, is not enough. Although native speakers speak and “hear” a language better than other people, they may lack the competence to reach the desired results. Since language itself is a living entity, it is prone to constant change, and if a native speaker is an expat, or someone constantly changing place of residence, he/she may fail to pick up on new terminology and minute changes that affect all languages on an almost daily basis. Be sure to hire a native speakers who are well grounded in their mother tongue.

Be Cautious of Polyglots

Another consideration is hiring translators who claim to be fluent in multiple languages. It is true that some people are polyglots, speaking several languages impeccably, but you should be aware that speaking a language is one thing- translating into a language is another. To be honest, there are people who translate into multiple language pairs; yours is to find them and make sure they are competent. Remember that translating doesn’t accept half-knowledge or fumbling–it is a clear, direct process involving a wide array of information. If someone offers you service in seven or eight language pairs, and works alone, it may be a sign you’re on the wrong track.

Seek Specialized Translators

And finally, after you’ve found a person who is a native speaker with a proven record of satisfied clients, the nature of your text should decide whether to hire the person in question or not. Not all translators do all types of translation; there are various areas and niches. If you need to translate a text on economics, you shouldn’t go to a translator that is predominantly involved in literature or legal translation. We’re not saying that such a person wouldn’t do a great job; it’s simply a matter of efficiency.

Therefore, always remember to find someone capable of translating into your target language; make sure that person is well-versed in your area of expertise or the area covered in the text in question–and you shouldn’t have any trouble. Translating is an art form just as much as writing; treat it as such, and you’ll find a translator that will match your needs perfectly.

Going Global With Your Business Website

Translation Services for global business

The world is getting smaller by the hour, and it is more and more difficult to succeed in the global economy. There are literally thousands of options and directions to take; there is more information than ever before- more than can be consumed. With new markets, new ideas and new trends, it is difficult to reach potential customers and run a successful business. Before you set off into the world of global business, there are six things you should do.

1. Have a clear, strong plan.

When it comes to global business, the power of analytics is tremendous. Decide on your primary goal. There is absolutely no time to waste. The world is changing at jet speed, and you have to stay in the game. Steer clear of blurred ideas, mixed up plans and unreliable information. Stay focused and work on achieving your dreams.

2. Be aware of competition.

Competition is out there, whether you like it or not, and it will hit hard. You might experience all kinds of things: someone copying your words, setting traps for you, embracing your current customers, etc. It will be a rat race, but that is how things go, and there is no time to brood on it. Make the best of your situation and head towards success.

3. Localize your site.

Meet the cultural norms of a market you are about to reach, and make sure your website is translated into several languages, depending on the region you target. By translating your web site, you will increase the chances of success by 70-80%. English is not the supreme Internet language anymore; you have to broaden your scope of influence. Also, proper keyword placement will make sure your site is picked up by search engines.

4. Follow the trends.

The most important thing is not to stay behind with the times. Stay in tune with the latest in design and check on everything that is currently happening in the online market. You never know what you might come across. Expand; go beyond what is popular and interesting. Offer discounts and incentives. This way, you will give your customers and visitors something to look forward to.

5. Have a strong social media presence.

Having a website is not enough anymore. You have to include social media buttons on your site, and make sure your customers are able to “share” anything they like. This will make you closer to thousands of people and enable you to draw many potential customers. Know that some countries do not use Facebook (Russia, for example), so be sure to include buttons for all major social networks.  Consider providing the Spanish, German, Portuguese, Chinese and French translation of your popular content.

6. Make your web design shine.

It is all about the appearance and ease of use, so you have to pay attention to your website’s design and functionality. Keep it simple, yet interesting and engaging. Remember that the design should go well with your web content and the overall appeal of your site (funny, serious, casual, etc.). Choose the colors wisely and follow the latest trends and templates.

Once you cover all that we have mentioned, there’s no doubt your website will maintain a strong global presence and attract plenty of customers. Your job is to lay down the groundwork.

Legal Ramifications Of Translating A Business Will

LawBefore discussing the legal complexities involved in translating a will, we need to understand what a business will is.  A business will is an agreement which is drawn by legal experts on behalf of the owner/owners of an enterprise. This document designates the next legal owner of the business, in case the actual owner dies or is physically indisposed.

But apart from establishing the next owner, a business will lays out the entire business succession plan. It states the financial, managerial and operational policies of a company to which the successor must adhere, thus ensuring a smooth transition of the business. It also determines the stake of each beneficiary in the business, that is, the staff, family and investors.

In short, a business will is a document which is the final word on the responsibilities, obligations,  policies and funding concerns of a company or organization after the death of its owner. The translation of a business will comes under the category of legal translation, for a will is drawn up with the help of legal advisers of a company.

Need for Translating a Business Will

In case the stakeholders in a business come from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds, there is need for the translation of the will. For instance, if the beneficiaries of a business speak French, Spanish and English, the original business will should be translated in each language.

Confidentiality of the Document

A business will is a confidential document which cannot be disclosed before the death of the owner. This sensitive document should be kept strictly confidential by the law firm and translation company.

Identical Duplicates

The certified and notarized translations of a will must be identical duplicates of the original document, as well as of each other. Any discrepancy in the translations can lead to confusion and unnecessary delay in the implementation of the will.

Language of Law

All legal documents have a specific jargon which must be maintained in every translated version. The legal and corporate terms in a business will can only be translated by an certified legal translator.

Authenticity of the Translated Will

It is very important for a business will to be translated by a certified translation services company whose translations can be trusted. If the authenticity of a translated will is questioned by its beneficiaries, complications will follow that can be avoided. A translation company hired for the translation of a will must have a reputation for carrying out accurate translations that can be certified and notarized.

Achieving Objectives

A legal instrument such as a business will is written to achieve specific legal objectives. These goals may include ensuring proper management and control of the business, ensuring viability, establishing future insurance policies, and maintaining a regular pattern for monetary dealings and payouts, etc. A business will is also a form of guidance for the new caretaker, instructing him/her on how to manage business debts and deal with personal guarantees, and professional obligations.

A successful translation of the business will fulfills the same objectives.