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In this article we continue to present 11 other misconceptions about translations and translators.

1. No professional translator is needed

Companies often believe that they do not need a professional translator, because the text they want to translate is not intended for native speakers of the target language. When translating a text into another language, the best solution is to always work with a professional translator, even one who specializes in the field you need.

2. Translators only use online tools to deliver their work

Translators use technological tools to make their work easier, to save time and to ensure the coherence of the translation. But these tools are just that: tools they use to improve their source and target language expertise, experience, and knowledge of the subject.

3. Professional translation is required only for contracts and legal documents

Of course, you need a professional for this type of document. But these professional services are also needed to translate a website, a brochure, video games, books, magazines and even presentations. Make no mistake about believing that professional translations are only for people visiting a foreign country.

4. The translation replaces one word with another

A translator is faced with many words that do not have direct translations. Also, the differences in sentence structure and syntax mean that many sentences need to be rearranged to sound natural in another language.

5. Translators can translate any subject as long as the text is in a language they know

Good translators will specialize in only a few areas. This allows them to stay up to date with the changes in their industry and current trends. Inexperienced translators will often say that they can translate any area.

6. There is only one correct translation for any text

Because translation is more than word replacement, there may be multiple translations for a given text, depending on the translator’s style and vocabulary. All these translations are correct if they follow the grammar rules.

7. A good translator does not need a proofreader

It is easy to miss small mistakes, so even the best translation needs to be reviewed by a proofreader to ensure the best quality.

8. Translation from one language to another (from French to English) is the same as the translation in the opposite direction (from English to French)

There are translators who manage very well both directions; however, the number of translators who can do this is not very large. Clients often believe that the translation is the same, regardless of the meaning the translator is following. Translators have dominant languages and it is usually in the interest of the translator and the client to translate into their dominant language.

9. A native speaker is always a better translator

Even if someone is a native speaker of a language, it does not mean or guarantee that that person will be able to translate properly. Translation requires discipline, study and continuous practice. A native speaker of a language does not inherently have all these qualities.

10. You can get a quality translation without interacting with the translator

Good translators ask questions. It is always good to keep in touch with your translator. Sometimes translators can find errors in the source file. After all, there are few people who will read your text as carefully as the translator.

11. Translators like to work for free

Most translators are willing to work pro bono from time to time. However, translators are professionals who have to make a living from this profession. Translation is not a hobby for most translators and it is not fair for people to ask translators to translate something for them for free.

For the first part of this topic, check out our article: Top 5 misconceptions about translations and translators (first part).

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