Why are back translations important?
Back translation is the process of bringing an already-translated text and translating it back into the original language before you compare the two source language texts. This assignment is typically undertaken by a translator who was not involved in the project earlier and has no expertise in the original content, its objectives, or its context.
Thus, for instance, you might have a letter in Albanian which you assign to a translator to translate into French. You then deliver that translated Albanian letter to a different translator and request them to translate it back into French, which would in this way create the back translation.
By comparing the back translation to the source text, translators can validate if the original translation was precise or not. Even though the back translation will not be exactly the same as the original text due to the particular nature of translation, it can make it easier to distinguish any inaccuracies or opacities.
What kind of content use back translation?
Now let’s see what kind of content is back translation is used for. Back translation, now and then described as double translation) is most valuable when the content at hand involves taglines, slogans, titles, product names, clever phrases, and puns for the unstated meaning of the content in a certain language that does not inevitably work for another language or region. The back translation presents the content owner the occasion to examine what imaginative permissions the translators undertook in order to fit the content for their market. And oftentimes, for content that has this complexity, the translator will deal with multiple options so the original content owner is able to make a decision that makes the most impression for the brand or company.
Preferably, anyone with an extremely valuable may want to have a back translation and understanding undertaken as a component of their translation process. Regularly, such services are used by pharmacological companies, medical device companies, clinical research organizations, and elsewhere for clinical trials documents, advertising materials, forms (comprising medicinal and informed accord), investigations, surveys, conventions, commercials, charges, accounts, marketing materials and anything that encompasses delicate or high-risk data.
When to use back translation services and when to not to?
You may want to use back-translation when it is vital to translate your subject matter in the most accurate way possible, and when your content is especially innovative and greatly important for your company or business.
For instance, when you intend to invest countless dollars on your new worldwide ad campaign. After you have come up with the concepts and messages for months with the best artistic brains and the copy is truly genius, now you want to know how can you be sure it will work nicely in other markets? It might need transcreation instead of just translation, so you want to understand what exactly your ads mean in Vietnamese, for example. That’s when you use back-translation.
When not to use back translation? If you add back translation to your localization process, this will mean you are involving a second or even a third translator, which means it can double or triple the project expenses. Therefore, use it only when the price of providing an erroneous translation is far higher than spending 3-4 times more on the project, or if your content fits in a very well regulated field.
If it is not required but you still want to do it, be wise about the extent of content to be back-translated. There are some documents or even parts of the text that may not need to be quality assured at all.
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