When Little Words Add Up to Big Differences

Everyone just wants to be understood. From the time we’re old enough to speak, we just want someone to say, “Hey–I get it.”

When it comes to the many different languages of the world, there are many interpreters who have the job of explaining to others what is being said. If you’ve ever watched a Major League Baseball game, you’ve seen the interpreters tell the reporters just what the star pitcher from the Dominican Republic is saying about the 9 shut-out innings he just threw.

Every Word Spoken

Did you ever wonder if anything was left out during language translation? Everyone speaks so quickly, how do you know that someone didn’t forget a word or two? Chances are, in most situations, leaving out a simple a word won’t make too much of a difference in getting the point across. But sometimes, a misinterpreted word or two can make all of the difference; in fact, when it comes to misinterpreting an entire representation of who a person is, it can be a very big deal.

The Story of Miss France

Though the Miss Universe Pageant has been known for its glamorous evening gowns and skimpy swimsuits, there has always been a portion where the contestants can really shine in a personal interview. Questions are asked and the contestant answers with as much poise and depth as possible. When Miss France was asked to identify a time in her life where she experienced failure, and how she dealt with it, she spoke her answer in her native language: French. There was an interpreter on hand to translate her answer into English for the judges, but something was lost in translation.

“…went out on a casting because my name wasn’t on the list. The very next day, I found that I was in a new book.” There was more to her explanation, but this is the part that caused an uproar because it was misinterpreted. Miss France did not say she missed her casting; she said that she missed her first year of medical school. She did not say she was in a new book; she said that the next day she bought new medical books so she could study harder. This could have been the difference between coming in as a runner-up and winning the title. Thankfully, this did not harm her chances because she was crowned victorious.

The Importance of Solid Translations

There’s a huge difference between a casting call and medical school. This only stresses the importance of why good, solid interpretation is important. Everyone wants to be understood; and everyone deserves to be understood; to have their words spoken how they were meant to be spoke. It’s the same with written communication. This is why we provide high-quality translations by 1500 professional translators who work on everything from legal documents to marketing plans; so that everything flows as smoothly as possible.

Give us a call today so that nothing of yours ever gets lost in translation again.

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