General Discussion: translation, language barriers, etc

Paola Pilnik shared this idea 2 years ago
Under Consideration

Hi everyone,

As I'm editing the Map I keep asking myself questions about which language to write a certain thing, if I should translate the titles of shows/venues, etc. I even talked to Vijay a bit about that on the phone.

I think this begs a bigger question, which is: who is this Map intended for?

I personally think the profiles should be in English and Spanish, since they won't really expire and it makes sense for someone to look them up if they're doing research on a certain artist.

But how about the events? When putting in Events happening in Brazil, I figured I should put in a summary of the show in Portuguese because the attendees would be Portuguese-speaking folks. It didn't really occur to me until recently that maybe non-Portuguese speakers might also want to read summaries in English, even if they're not attending the show. So should it have versions in both langugages?

And also, how about titles? And venue names? If I translate a title into English, it'll make it much harder for someone who actually wants to go see the show to find information about it. If I don't translate it, it falls into the trap of not being looked at because non-Portuguese speakers are thrown off by not understanding the language. Same with venue names. If a place has "Teatro" in the title, should it be translated to "Theater"?

Many questions which I don't think there's an answer for just yet cause the Map is so new.

Anyway, was wondering about what you guys have been doing/thinking.


Comments (1)


Ciao Paola,

I think those are excellent questions to take into consideration for the map.

Starting with titles and venues, I think those should always be in their original languages, no matter what. Because other search components will allow the events to come up regardless of title, people would probably still look at events they don't understand the name of if other qualifications are met. (A show called "Il Trionfo dell'Amore" would still be of interest to someone looking for physical theatre in Italy, for example.)

In terms of the content of the actual event, I have found that with some theatres I've worked with, on Facebook events they will include the description in their primary language and then again in English underneath on the same event page. This is maybe a good way of going about it?

The names do bring up a concern because someone could always add a second profile for the native/non-native name and create confusion of duplicate profiles. In the future it would be helpful if names redirected to the same page. For example, I've made a page for Continuo Theatre, but in Czech they're known as Divadlo Continuo. If they could redirect to the same page, that would be great in the future.

These are all excellent things to consider in the creation of events and individual pages.