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Should businesses use online translation websites?

In the last few years the use of online translation tools has risen dramatically as more and more translation websites pop up on the internet such as Google Translate and FreeTranslation just to name a couple. Are these websites 100% accurate though? Today we are going to look at some of their advantages and disadvantages and discuss whether workplaces and other establishments should trust these websites to provide accurate business related translations.

What are the advantages of instant online translation websites?

It has to be said that online instant translation websites do have their advantages but certainly not as many as some people think. If someone does not speak a foreign language and they need to work out how to say something in that language or understand something foreign in their mother tongue, then an online instant translation website can be a good tool to offer a general gist of the subject at the beginning, but is in no way accurate.

Additionally, if you have to say something in a foreign language, this tool allows you to try to get your point across so that you can be understood when in a foreign country where nobody speaks English for example.

These tools can also be be useful if you have to translate very short simple and standard sentences that are standard in every language.

Examples

What is your name?

Where are you from?

Do you work here?

What are the disadvantages of instant online translation websites?

English is a language where many words have more than one meaning depending on the context but also have the same spelling-these are known as homographs. More often than not when such a word is translated in a sentence it is very probable for the word to be mistranslated as the websites are not always smart enough to translate according to the context of the rest of the sentence but rather the word itself.

Homograph examples

Wind

Minute

Wound

These 3 words have one spelling but equally each one has at least 2 different meanings and 2 different pronunciations. Take a moment to digest that- 2 different pronunciations and meanings for each word.

So, should we trust free online instant translation websites?

In my opinion, no. This may seem a little harsh to say so firmly but I believe as useful a tool as they are, there is always and for the foreseeable future will be too much room for error. Businesses that are trying to promote themselves to increase their customer base ironically cannot afford to not spend money on an unofficial translation from one of these websites as it could in reality cost them a lot more if the translation is wrong and makes them a laughing stock. Remember, like most things, use these websites in moderation and always seek the approval of a native even if you are confident it is correct.

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One comment

  1. I am for online translation businesses because now a days, everything changes and updated probably due to modern technology.

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