“I’m on the fence about coming to your party.” A very simple sentence to translate, right?
Not exactly. To be “on the fence” is an English expression meaning “to be undecided” about something. And if you put the sentence into Google Translate and then put those translations back into English to see whether they are accurate, you will get other combinations:
- In French: Sometimes, “I’m undecided about coming to your party” and other times, “I’m about to come to your party.” The first is right and the second is wrong.
- In Spanish: “I’m undecided…,” which is correct.
- In Portuguese: “I’m not sure about going to your party,” which changed the verb and is not correct either.
When your communications demand total accuracy – such as for medical, legal, and marketing communications; directions for use; etc. – AI must be edited by translation professionals. Auerbach International, using Master’s-level linguists, does precisely that.
Accuracy involves other forms of communication:
As illustrated in our Global Gurus podcasts with Danila Palmieri and Luiza Dreasher, in Brazil, it is common to start business conversations asking your marital status; inquiring about your spouse and your children; and talking about your interests and hobbies. And other Brazilian differences apply to concepts of time/punctuality as well as adapting imported foods and drinks to Brazilian tastes. Bad news should be communicated indirectly; speaking in a direct US way is considered insulting.
Name and slogan evaluations are additional services Auerbach International provides. When Ford introduced its Pinto car in Brazil, it was unaware that “pinto” in local slang means “tiny male genitals.” Our professional screening would have prevented this expensive blunder.
Please contact us about these and many other services in 120+ languages.
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