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New Poll - Localized Names
This week's poll was suggested by Carmella. I'm actually not sure if this commonly happens anymore, but apparently it does because Carmella claimed "this has recently become a popular practice of a large-scale translations publisher." Didn't name the publisher though. The example I gave is from Cardcaptor Sakura.

You can submit poll ideas here
http://www.mangaupdates.com/showtopic.php?tid=3903

Previous Poll Results:
Question: How do you feel about authors publishing the prototype / precursor after the series had officially come to an end?
Choices:
No opinion - votes: 822 (29.3%)
Cool, but I won't be reading it - votes: 427 (15.2%)
It's great! Will read it - votes: 1387 (49.5%)
I hate it as it adds nothing new to the story. It's just the rejected version of a series I liked - votes: 168 (6%)
There were 2804 total votes.
The poll ended: March 29th 2020

PS: I hope you guys are sheltering in place, as a majority of the world is dealing with the COVID-19
Posted by lambchopsil on 
March 29th 3:53pm
Comments ( 39 )  
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Comments

» residentgrigo on March 29th, 2020, 9:48am

It doesn't matter (to me). Only localize when it makes sense of course but those are all valid decisions as that is how translations work. An example.
Changing Arisu to Alice Sakaguchi in Please Save My Earth makes perfect sense but going from Shinichi to Jimmy Kudo. That´s a no from me dog.

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» Utsukushii Yume on April 2nd, 2020, 1:21pm

I am reading the book of someone outside of my culture. I am fully aware of this, and I would like the localizing team to help me enjoy my visit to another country instead of trying to hinder my visit.

Reading for me has always been a doorway to expanding my horizon, be it using a dictionary to understand a word, or inquiring about a joke I as an American don't understand. How can I appreciate Asian names and their meanings if they are all translated into American names? How can I appreciate someone else's culture, if by the time it reaches my hands it has been stripped away and replaced with American culture?

If I wanted to read an American book about John Smith, I'd have just picked one up here in America. So for me, if you can leave it alone, then leave it. Although I am aware of certain situations that call for it to be changed.

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» Transdude1996 on March 29th, 2020, 10:26am

No, the names don't match the characters and their cultures

Just look at Dragon Ball with Mr. Satan, and Jojo's Bizarre Adventure and Gunnm with the basic characters, if you want examples of translators trying to "fix" a problem that doesn't exist.

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» residentgrigo on March 29th, 2020, 10:36am

I again present to you THE worst take possible ↑ . The "fixes" are the only reason JoJo can leave Japan. The licensees even try to retain the musical connotations if possible. No worse example could have been used. None. Jojo no Kimyou na Bouken character names are changed to avoid lawsuits. The Prince estate would sue you into next week if you used the original names which are all over JoJo and they aren´t the only ones. One of the reasons Capcom didn´t bring their Part 5 game out of Japan. Prince was obviously still alive back then so things used to be even bleaker. And then came this (only in the OVA): https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/news/2008-05-22/jojo-ani me-manga-sales-halted-due-to-islamic-images
I wonder how close A.P.P.P. and co came to a Fatwa... Dark stuff and the other reason why the English breakthrough of JoJo (still a niche IP outside of Japan of course) took so long. You never stop learning with me MU 😉. So yeah, think things through when adapting stuff but no one could have known here I think.

And not only did DBZ go with "Hercule Satan" in the end, his actual name is Mark. But no. Dragon Ball should have dared a moral panic on a prime time slot in the most Christain nation on the planet. Jikes. His main appearance was further during the Buu Saga that first aired around 9/11! Simply amazing.

Edit: Hm. I am as obsessed with 9/11 as RLM, aren´t I? I should do a word count on how often I bring it up on the web.

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» Transdude1996 on March 29th, 2020, 11:37am

Dude, the Hell is your problem?

Also, if you have to censor a product in order to release it in a certain area, then don't release it in that area. Game companies already figured that out half a decade ago.

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» alidan on April 1st, 2020, 4:29am

with online distribution, translate it and sell it, just don't sell it in countries where its a problem, but don't make it hard for them to work around and buy it anyway.

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» zarlan on March 29th, 2020, 10:49am

Names are generally not something that should be translated or localized.
Ever.
Nicknames and titles, are a different matter, of course.
You translate "Blackbeard" to kurohige, or svartskägg etc, but Edward Teach (his actual name) always remains Edward Teach, and always should.

However some names in manga/anime (and some other fiction), are intended to be beyond obvious in their meaning, with their meaning being quite relevant/important. They're, practically speaking, more like titles or indicators, though they are, nominally at least, actual names.
Hence there are some cases, where they should actually be translated.
This is not the case with "Yukito Tsukishiro to Julian Star", as cited in the poll.
It's a perfectly normal name (the kanji are chosen to have a meaning that is suited to the character, as a subtle little thing, as is often the case in manga/anime, but...), and is therefore not a name that is acceptable to translate or localize, in any way.

Oh, and there is one other case where translators should make changes to names:
Fixing mangaka errors, in how they spell non-Japanese names.
Much like fixing errors in non-Japanese writing, like if they write something in German, and you fix spelling and grammar mistakes ...unless, of course, it's supposed to be said/written by someone who isn't supposed to be particularly competently, such as a Japanese person. Not counting Japanese who have grown up in Germany like, say, Asuka. (or worse: the incomprehensible nonsense "German", spoken by the "Germans" in the anime K)
This doesn't, however, extend to "fixing" the occasional nonsensical name, that simply doesn't exist and wouldn't make any sense and/or sound ridiculous (e.g. in Hanayamata: "Fountainstand" isn't a surname and never will be)

Edit: I did a quick check, to make sure Mr. Satan was Satan in the original (and it's not like the translators/localizers would change the name to Satan!) and was very amused to see that the "Mr" is in the original Japanese.

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» kaloo on March 29th, 2020, 11:02am

I'm torn. A lot of my favorites when I was younger were very localized and I remember them fondly, but I prefer as little localization as possible.

I'm annoyed enough at them flipping the name order to Given Name-Family Name

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» calstine on March 29th, 2020, 11:38am

Absolutely not. I don't believe in all this "localisation" nonsense in the first place. Preserve the culture of the damn country of origin, ffs. Trying to pretend that "all cultures in the world are similar" is the reason that intolerance is still so prevalent in this day and age. How would English-speaking people like it if Japanese or Chinese people "translated" their names? I can barely even stand the switching of East Asian names to "the normal configuration" of given name-before-family name, though I've resigned myself to all official translations doing this anyway.

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» HikaruYami on March 29th, 2020, 12:25pm

No, the names don't match the characters and their cultures

When it's a matter of censorship, I hold my nose, maybe throw up a little bit, and continue reading (and when it's a clear nickname with a real meaning, I'm just fine with it. Like Whitebeard/Blackbeard in One Piece, as mentioned earlier). When they just change a Japanese person's Japanese name because "oh no that's too ETHNIC for our majority-white audience!", yeah, absolutely 100% fuck you and I am never reading your translation of anything.

It's actually why I gave up mangastream's One Piece scanlations! Katakuri's name being "translated" via an obscure historical reference was the worst, dumbest bullshit I have ever seen in a scanlation.

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» residentgrigo on March 29th, 2020, 1:13pm

You heart it here first folks. Dragon Ball, JoJo, Naruto, One Piece, Macross or... should have never left Japan! I wonder if the bible should have stayed in... I don´t know, is it Jerusalem? TONS of localization issues there. And does FMA count? Arakawa got some things wrong when she adapted some of the foreign names. And how would anyone translate Sandman/Soundman from Steel Ball Run? It´s impossible to get that wordplay into ANY other language.

DoA Xtreme 3 further had a region free official English localization since 2016 but let´s spread that marketing tactic of it being "too hot" for outside Asia further. It´s not like the 2 previous spin-off games flopped outside of Japan (and inside Japan) so Koei Tecmo decided to make a fake controversy to bait the Chads to fight for free peaches. We are talking about a game that released in the famously sexually open China here. Lol. I love it when idiots get conned out of their money and Germany´s USK gave the last 2 "beach" games an age rating of 12+. Nobody cares. Nobody ever cared or DoA 5 and 6 would need to stay in Japan too. That´s why this transparent as glass stunt was pulled. See MU, never ever will you stop learning with me.
The game is trash btw (2/10) and has about a maximum of 20 minutes of actual game content (outside the casino). Nealy all QTS and a broken volleyball game. They even cut features from the older versions it was a glorified port of. Did you also know that this is a free to play DLC trap? Were the Chads connected out of at least 60$ + shipping to play a game that is free on PSN 🤣 ? Oh well, if this pays for Nioh 3 then so be it. That´s how I played it out of curiosity.
Those games have localization changes btw (and not all the cast members are Japanese so that´s an added layer) to quickly touch on the poll´s topic again. I guess even the main series should have never left Japan then...

Jokes and educating content aside. Sandman/Soundman from JoJo Part 7 is untranslatable as is, right? https://jojowiki.com/Sandman
JoJo is clearly top tier when it comes to translation difficulty. The old scanlations certainly crushed people. This post just works TM.

Edit: The one above is the new JoJo wikia btw. Only it will get updates from the old admins.

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» HikaruYami on March 29th, 2020, 7:05pm

I don't know who you think you're responding to (protip: there's an actual reply button when reading this as a news post rather than a forum thread) but just for the record, it's not possible for Arakawa to have gotten any names in FMA "wrong" because she set it in a completely fictional universe. Amestris is like a fantasy mishmash of all of Europe but vaguely centered on Germany, and Xing is a sort of fantasy China parody across a surprisingly small desert. These countries are NOT Germany and China. Any names she decided on for the people of these countries are correct for the history and culture of the world SHE created.

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» zarlan on March 30th, 2020, 8:53am

@residentgrigo ...
Okay, I get that you want to defend changes, if they are the only way that a series is allowed to be published in a country. I agree ...but I would point out that the changes are still bad, in those cases, just that they are a necessary evil. (as for names that are wordplay, due to the vagueness of katakana, and how it relates to English... I'd say that's a rather separate issue, if kinda related [but too complicated to go into, here, rather than in its own topic], to what this topic is about)

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» hkanz on March 29th, 2020, 3:02pm

It would discourage me from reading the series.

Scanlators must be doing a good job of sheltering in place, seems like there’s been a steady stream of releases lately.

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» catandmouse on March 29th, 2020, 5:12pm

I’ve noticed this happening a lot with webtoons, especially the Chinese webtoons and I personally hate it. I can kinda see the publishers localizing names in order to facilitate things for readers, but I also believe that if we’re willing to read these foreign comics, we won’t be intimidated by foreign names.

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» Nekore on March 29th, 2020, 9:59pm

This is the reason why I hate it the most. I like to use the chance to learn be it by names or idioms.

Also something I hate with some animes (or more like I'm able to notice) is how they remove different ways of addressing a character when they're a great way of showing glimpses of the character personality or their relationship.

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» kurotaito on March 29th, 2020, 5:38pm

No, the names don't match the characters and their cultures I know there are studies about this in media. That is, localization helps to widen vierwership, but personally as a child, growing up with elder family watching subs of like anything (e.g. Japanese, Mexican, Korean, Brazilian media), I never felt like the localized version was any better. It most cases it was worst, the longer I watched that type of media.

Yes there are multiple other reasons why localization is done, but honestly you always better off watching subs if you can or reading the original.

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» Lorska on March 29th, 2020, 11:44pm

Just no.
I't would be fine when things aren't set in Japan.
I'm fine with Lawrence moving through a European based medieval fantasy world.
But who can suspend their disbelief about Jim and Johnny walking through Sendai?

A lot of the time characters have specific names for a reason. You can try and localize it but the result in cases where these do matter may end up completely lost or completely on the nose.

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» carcar435867 on March 30th, 2020, 2:29am

It kinda depends honestly

If there are names that are supposed to be wordplay for example Hagel Boldness (Called Haggel Baldness in Japanese). His whole character gag is about him being sensitive to the fact that he's bald. Obviously since his last name is in english in the original japanese it's not so on the nose to have his last name literally be Baldness so the change of one letter to Boldness in english works a lot better.

I'm not inherently opposed to localizing names but the fact is that so many companies pick the stupidest and most generic sounding english names especially when it totally doesn't work in the context. Example - Tapas' localization of Lan Chi changed Ming Lan to Skye. I like this, it fits the theme of the story and the character. However, changing Ming Jing and Ming Qing to Casper and Victor is stupid. The names don't even match each other anymore, if they were going to use Casper why not do Casper and Jasper?

And then you have cases like Wo nanpiao shi jinyiwei where it CLEARLY takes place in ancient china but you've got these ancient chinese people with the names "Ron" and "Tanya".

If the setting is some ambiguous nondescript nation sure, knock yourself out with the creative names but if it's obviously supposed to be an asian country why tf would you give them english names.

I get WHY these companies want to make things more palatable to a foreign audience and to be honest I probably wouldn't be so open to watching anime as a child if the characters were named "Satoshi" and "Haruka" instead of "Ash" and "May" but as I grew older I grew more accepting of it when exposed to stuff like Inuyasha later. If it's stuff for little kids i do get and support changing the names for more general appeal - see yugioh. But for an audience that's not tiny babies I think they can handle a couple foreign names

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» Transdude1996 on March 30th, 2020, 7:29am

Quote from carcar435867
I get WHY these companies want to make things more palatable to a foreign audience and to be honest I probably wouldn't be so open to watching anime as a child if the characters were named "Satoshi" and "Haruka" instead of "Ash" and "May" but as I grew older I grew more accepting of it when exposed to stuff like Inuyasha later. If it's stuff for little kids i do get and support changing the names for more general appeal - see yugioh. But for an audience that's not tiny babies I think they can handle a couple foreign names

I sort of doubt that retaining the original names would have resulted in a loss of interest because the Saban translation for the Digimon anime from Digimon Adventure to Digimon Frontier still retained the Japanese names for some of the characters and some references to the fact that the story takes place in Japan, and the franchise came to be the closest thing that Pokemon had to a rival when brought over to the West (As oppose to the older Shin Megami Tensei and newer series like Spectrobes).

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» zarlan on March 30th, 2020, 9:00am

Quote from carcar435867
Obviously since his last name is in english in the original japanese it's not so on the nose to have his last name literally be Baldness so the change of one letter to Boldness in english works a lot better.

Ehm... the name being Baldness, is a clear reference to baldness, even to the Japanese. That'd be the whole point in choosing that, as his family name. (I think it is good to avoid the terms "first name" and "last name", what with the fact that they aren't necessarily first or last, respectively)
Quote
to be honest I probably wouldn't be so open to watching anime as a child if the characters were named "Satoshi" and "Haruka" instead of "Ash" and "May"

Why not? You were clearly fine with "Pikachu".
Not to mention the many fantasy works, that have strange and unfamiliar names, that kids love and never seem to have any problems with.

BTW:
Digimon changed the name "Tailmon" in Japan, to "Gatomon" for English audiences, and on an even more poignant note: the Japanese "Fairymon" was changed to "Kazemon", for "Western" audiences. (on an unrelated note: Digimon is nothing like Pokemon. Both involve monsters, and both are for kids and with kids with monster partners as protagonists, but that's where the similarities end)

P.S.
The general principles of translation, is that the reader/viewer is supposed to get the same thing, the same meaning/feeling/connotations/message, from the work, as the original audience. Names should never be translated. (nicknames and titles, however, generally should ...and names in fiction, that are actually more like nicknames/titles/descriptions/indicators)

As such, a lot of things done in the name of localization, a lot of localization period, is wrong.
You shouldn't make it seem like the work is set in, for example, the US rather than Japan. That's ridiculous and wrong, on multiple levels. You shouldn't change Japanese names to "Western" ones. (though when the dog in Excel Saga is named "menchi", the translation should change that to, say, "mince", to reflect how this is her being named as mince meat, reflecting her status as emergency food)

It should be noted that these principles indicate that the suffixes like -san/-kun/-chan, should be translated away ...but I think that scanlations, and a lot of commercial manga/anime should keep them. After all, manga-/anime-nerds are an audience that either knows or, very quickly and happily, learns the meaning of those suffixes. For stuff that is meant for a mainstream audience, however (pokemon, Ghibli, big audience movies...) they should be translated away.

...and, as far as I'm concerned, switching the order of given and family names, is a (wrong, bad, and invalid) form of translation. To be fair, the only reason that Westerners do it, is because the Japanese do it. Because when they opened up, in the Meiji Restoration, they thought they needed to do so, to help "Westerners" cope.
...except we've never had a problem with family-given names:
Chinese people, and most other Asians and various others, who use family-given order, never swap their names, and hence their names aren't swapped in Western media.
Kim Jong-un, Ban Ki-Moon, Mao Tsedong...
They are all known by their proper names, in their proper order.
Without any problems.
...but Abe Shinzou is known as Shinzo Abe. (oh, and long vowels are ignored...)
Oda Nobunaga is Oda Nobunaga, as historical names are kept in their proper order ...and you do have some other cases, of retained order.
Hence all the swapping just leads to confusion. With Chinese names, we understand that the family name comes first.
With Japanese, it's a guessing game.

Of course none of that comes close to the absurdity of Westerners swapping the order of their names, in Japan. Presenting themselves as, say "Smith John".
The excuse of being helpful doesn't work, as even the most ignorant Japanese person is well aware that Westerners have given-family name order, and all Japanese media keep Western names in their original order. (Japanese news speak of Donarudo Torampu. Not Torampu Donarudo) It's just weird, confusing, misleading, inexplicable ...and just pure stupid.
I'd like to know where the practice came from, how it came about... What possible reason, that anyone has for doing it...

One should, of course, replace Japanese idioms with English equivalents, so that it is understood. (as I said: The general principle of translation is that the reader/viewer is supposed to get the same thing, the same meaning/feeling/connotations/message, from the work, as the original audience) ...though if the idiom is mentioned, immediately followed by an explanation of the idiom, as I think I remember seeing on occasion, then this wouldn't really be necessary.

I remember an instance where a character misunderstood a saying/idiom (both for a bit of humor and showing his unfamiliarity of it, as a hint about how you later get to know he had grown up overseas), where the translator had found an idiom in the target language, that managed to convey the same kind of meaning, and also work with the misunderstanding (...though this didn't really work in English, so the English translation had to have a direct translation, with explanation)

BTW: It should be noted, given the principle of the reader/viewer being supposed to get the same thing, the same meaning/feeling/connotations/message, from the work, as the original audience... There are two schools of thought, on the subject of translating poetry:
1. It's the very, very, difficult thing to translate.
2. It's impossible to translate.

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» VawX on March 30th, 2020, 2:34am

Why would you translate names mmm...~?
Unless they have "noun" names like "Swordmaster" or "Heero" then you should never change any name mmm...

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» residentgrigo on March 30th, 2020, 2:39am

Sure there was no deeper meaning or research whatsoever in a manga that had a Führer and Bones created the very fictional Adolf Hitler when they adapted FMA for the first time. Funny how those pieces connected so easily. The Thule Society is a real thing btw:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thule_Society
Member when that all happened? What´s the next trick. Hm. Here are the real-life Lannisters:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_of_Lancaster
You can do this with Dune, LotRs and... That´s kind of the point of those books. Learning from history and the reader would need to spot the hints so you can´t be too liberal with your new names as an author.

One final step on our DoA X3 detour. The lack of an "official" non-Asian release lead to minimal reviews. The last one got 38/100. The new one has a very generous 43/100. You know with movies how only the best productions don´t get screened for critics? About that...
So no only did the producers create a fake crusade and an artificial appearance of limited quantities for a game that would only get a limited run anyway, they also circumnavigated a public critical bashing. Not completely but they limited it, especially in the early weeks of the product´s lifecycle. They protected the life cycle!
Shit localisations can be their own reward sometimes. Hello Capcom.

Here is a question. What do you do when the last team(s) messed with a name but the translation took root in the heads of your fanbase? Nikolai Zinoviev from Resident Evil 3, out this Friday, is such a case: https://residentevil.fandom.com/wiki/Nikolai_Zinoviev
Localisations continue to be a fickle mistress.

PS: Monster (the setting is bigger than "just" Germany) nailed its names and even minute details 99% of the time an age before easy to do web research. Hats off Urasawa. All the hats.

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» Otakuch on March 30th, 2020, 3:05am

NOOOO

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» residentgrigo on March 30th, 2020, 8:27am

You need to appease all sorts of people if you want to get your daytime kid´s show on the air and be more importantly successful in let´s say Texas or Florida. Why, there? No reason.
The advertisers, the toy people, whoever runs the affiliate channels and so on will make our break you! This is a business after all. Failure can mean blacklisting for life. Ash Ketchum it is then.
Kind of a smart name to get the kiddos to consume and obey.
User Posted Image
Chinpokomon Trainer: I've got to collect all Chinpokomon! I've got to collect them all so I can become World Crown Chinpoko-Master! Oh!
Japanese Spokeswoman: All Chinpokomon, and you will have happy feeling-su!

Edit: A lot of this is also run by the original IP holders. Especially in the last decade+. Even with manga as my breakdown here proves. You can blame the "uncultured" official translators all you want but they work under Shueisha´s and Shogakukan´s thumbs.

The Eva 3.33 dub "recall" speaks for itself I think but Hollywood Kojima was displeased by his exact words not being followed in MGS 1 - 1998 (and probably Snatcher) so we got more exact and easily worse translations after he gained enough clout to control the US scrips.
That very game got a 2nd dub + script (!) in the GameCube "remake" only 6 years later and it´s widely recognized as an inferior product. US Kojima dubs peaked in the 90s and not with Death -11,5 hours of by the letter cutscenes- Stranding. Good game but you should read some of that game´s endless emails. Dear lord...
Die-Hardman, born John Blake McClane, is pure poetry though. Such are names no one should ever dare to change 🤣. Jokes aside, Die-Hardman is a highlight.

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» residentgrigo on March 30th, 2020, 9:39am

Mr. Satan made it to Germany unchanged for all that care as moral panics were dead by the time this aired here. Ok there was one about videogame violence but it got forever solved in the late 00s and to the early 2010s. We good now. Actual nazis can even be in games and everything. Listen to the first 10 seconds for your German Satan goodness:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtwyAiEjFV0

That part of the dub (we started with all of the original Dragon Ball first) aired in 2002.
Usagi further became Bunny (the English word, not German) Tsukino as that is what her name is. Usagi doesn´t mean a thing unless you know Japanese and it will mean bunny then. Good luck with the moon connection though...
These are the changes you need to make to end up with a good and more importantly accurate translation. Unless you want to go from one annotation to the next. I´ll take them but have some heart for your readers and you can´t do notes within notes in an audio medium. Just According to Keikaku intensifies. I was there when that bomb dropped. Lol.

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» zarlan on March 30th, 2020, 9:52am

Quote from residentgrigo
Mr. Satan made it to Germany unchanged for all that care as moral panics were dead by the time this aired here.

Actually I read DB in Swedish ...which was a translation from the German translation.
Though as someone who got into manga/anime, through German dubbed anime, I must say that their translations are relatively decent/faithful. (not that I don't have complaints, but...)
Also their voice acting is far better than in American dubs. Nowhere near as good as the original Japanese, but relatively good, as far as dubs go.

...and yeah, translating Usagi to Bunny, is bad/wrong according to what I've said before about names, but it's even more bad, given that the only reason for the meaning having any relevance, is due to the whole notion of a rabbit on the moon, that doesn't exist in the West. Anyone who'd know about that, is likely to also know that "usagi" means "rabbit", anyway.
Quote
Just According to Keikaku intensifies.

"Everything is going to be daijoubu" (the Japanese, here, was "daijoubu", BTW)
"Ich will protect you"
(from Yurikuma Arashi. Dunno which fansub group)

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» Ceiye on March 30th, 2020, 6:25pm

I think it entirely depends. Sometimes, a character's name has meaning that wouldn't have the same meaning if we just romanized the Japanese, or other language, name. Melinda Megamelons from Way Of The Samurai 4, for example. Is her name Melinda Megamelons in the original Japanese version? No. For some reason, she is a westerner coming to Japan for the first time with a Japanese name, but that is an entirely other thing. But her name got localized to Melinda Megamelons because her name was originally a boob joke to begin with. I don't remember what exactly it was, but it if you knew Japanese and you saw it, you would instantly know "Oh, that's a boob joke" (which is extremely not okay, considering she's a pretty cool character)

So yeah, I'm pretty indifferent towards localized names if they suit the character and have meaning. I'm not going to be taken out of the immersion just by that tiny thing. Like, if that shattered my suspension of disbelief, I'd have rioted every time I read IN ENGLISH high schoolers struggling in English class.

I do have to admit that it is way easier to remember certain characters though. I remember when I first read Lookism, back when there were only fan translations, I couldn't remember anyone's names. I was a little pissed at the official translation at first for giving them western names, but the more I read it, the more I was like "Yeah, this guy IS a Logan. He gives off the exact vibe of someone with the name Logan"

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» Lorska on March 31st, 2020, 12:16am

I'm just gonna assume this was a response to me as nobody else I saw here used the phrase suspension of disbelief.

Mostly because I really don't know if the thing about English classes Is a joke because if you think nobody EVER struggles with their language classes (even their "native" ones) then I really don't know what to say.
I fail to see the connection here.
It's still nice that some people are fine with the localized names.

Honestly there are a bunch of cases where localization makes sense, though you could argue that those names probably should have been modified by the original author to begin with, e.g. foreigners having their corresponding foreign names.

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» Ceiye on March 31st, 2020, 4:51pm

I didn't read any of the other comments, so sorry if you thought I was targetting you. If I was going to reply to you, I would use the reply button. I'm not a coward.

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» Lorska on March 31st, 2020, 5:09pm

Haha, no worries, all good 😀

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» Jooles on March 30th, 2020, 7:19pm

I'm torn for one simple reason, that it's easier to get confused when every name sounds japanese. Manga like One Piece and Naruto have very distinct names, AND they handle the introductions of them very well.

But then we also have other manga, typically in a high-school setting, that offer little in terms of original names, AND it's more common than not that a manga author's writing ability isn't up-to-par, and they just throw you into the deep end with a bunch of characters all at once. This gets confusing even in english fiction.

(Disclaimer: Obviously there's shou/nen/jo-manga that are amazingly written, and most of them that aren't are still very enjoyable for adults, but they're labeled for teens for a reason.)

ADD to that the current norm of drawing-style this last decade or so might be pretty (well, I personally hate it but I guess people like its superficial qualities) and offers VERY LITTLE in terms of original art. It's practically impossible to look at a character and spot from which manga it's from, and many times it's even hard to see differences between characters in THE SAME EFFIN' MANGA. I miss the 90's/early 00's, and I look forward wholeheartedly to the next evolution.

In those cases, give me an easily recognizable Julian Star any day of the week.

But in general, I dislike it, because it's not the author's input, and I prefer my fiction as clean as possible. And I was thoroughly annoyed by watching DQ: Your Story - there was no need to change Henri to Harry or Papasu to Pankraz because they're easily recognizable as is, and hearing the J-voices say one name and the translation say another is jarring and immersion-breaking.

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» HikaruYami on April 3rd, 2020, 8:36am

I dunno about you, Jooles, but I'm not going to have an easier time distinguishing a Sarah from a Sasha than I am a Hikari from a Haruka (to be clear, I don't have a particularly hard time with either unless they're introduced alongside 50 other characters at the exactly same time, at which point I have a hard time with both).

Names are hard and good introductions can make them easier, but I don't think it's at all fair to just put that on "oh but they're Japanese huh huh". One Piece has such vivid and distinct names because they're deliberately unique. No one's real world name in any culture would be Usopp or Luffy or Pudding. It took me forever to get used to the names in Negima not because they were Japanese but because we were 150 chapters in before half the class stopped being background characters (and I really, really liked Negima).

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» zarlan on April 3rd, 2020, 3:16pm

@HikaruYami I'd just like to mention how massively and wholeheartedly I agree! (well, not about liking Negima, but everything else...)

Though Usopp is actually a portmanteau (and very similar to) of the Ancient Greek name Aesop, and the Japanese word "uso", meaning lie. (also, there are a few "proper" names in One Piece ...but the vast majority, are completely foreign to any culture, with no one actually having a name that is anything like them, so your point most certainly still stands!)

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» carcar435867 on March 30th, 2020, 11:14pm

Uh not sure if you're just being willfully ignorant here or not but the dub for digimon while they did keep the japanese name and setting intact where pokemon didn't, did not exactly maintain the names 100%. the original digimon dub shortened the character's names / gave them nicknames and let's not forget that they changed taichi's family name to a DIFFERENT but still japanese name for some reason.

there was still some manner of adapting the source material to be more palatable to a foreign audience even if they didn't change it 100% and that's not even considering all the edits made to make it less violent and shorter for the shorter allotted broadcasting time.

i'm personally a fan of how they handled the name changes in the original beyblade

takao -> tyson
Kyoujyu -> kenny
kai -> kai
rei -> ray

kept a lot of names the same but the ones they did change they kept close to their original japanese names
and if i recall i think they handled the laptop character was SUPER interesting, she wasn't even IN the original japanese version?? they purely invented her for the english dub and she was super charming

and while on this topic i always found it very bizarre how they made tao ren and tao jun in shaman king british in the english dub. they changed ren/len -> lenny (lol) but like... he and his sister are still wearing super stereo-typical ~chinese~ (actually jun's qipao is manchurian) so making them british is just confusing?

and also i never understood why they kept yoh as yoh in the english but changed hao to zeke?

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» zarlan on April 1st, 2020, 1:17am

Quote from carcar435867
Uh not sure if you're just being willfully ignorant here or not but the dub for digimon while they did keep the japanese name and setting intact where pokemon didn't, did not exactly maintain the names 100%. the original digimon dub shortened the character's names / gave them nicknames a ...

I'm not sure who you think you're replying to given that no one argued that names in Digimon weren't changed, in the West.
AFAIK I was the only one to mention Digimon ...and I pointed out how they changed names.
Most notably Fairymon (Japanese name) to Kazemon (Western name), but also several other examples of names that were completely changed, for no apparent reason whatsoever.
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sure pikachu but you conveniently failed to mention the swath of pokemon that DID receive english names?

...because they are irrelevant.
Do those pokemon, erase the existence of the non-localized names?
Are you not still perfectly fine with names like Pikachu?
Not to mention names in Fantasy and/or Sci-Fi, that don't come from Japanese or any Western language? (or, if there is a connection to one, it's far from apparent)
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there's plenty of martial arts movies where they kept "sensei!" and "shifu!"

The fact that some people/companies go against the principles of translation, developed and agreed upon by the experts, doesn't mean that the principles don't exist
...nor, indeed, does the fact that plenty of movie translations do that, make that practice good or acceptable.
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sensei has almost come to have its own meaning, at least with how it is seen and used in popular media.

Sensei is an English word. A loan-word from Japanese
...the use of which, I am firmly against.
It is (in the way it is used in English), a word for something we already have a common word for.

Asian martial arts are often guilty of this.
They use untranslated terms for perfectly common things, for which there are perfectly common English words that mean exactly that. Sensei instead of teacher, waza instead of technique/move...
You might as well use te instead of hand, or keri instead of kick.
Names should (usually) be untranslated and it is common and acceptable to use the word in the original language, for concepts that don't exist in the target language (e.g. "wabi-sabi" ), but for basic stuff that exists in it...
When speaking English, there is no need to randomly and arbitrarily use Japanese words for some things, that you could just as well say in English.
After all:
For ch riyuu would you querrías that? In what Weise would that förbättra anything?
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The localization team didn't attempt to maintain the word play in his name

WTF are you talking about? That's exactly what they did!

On a separate note, they went full bore localization, on that game series
...but given the heavy use of wordplay and Japan-specific references and the like, they did rather need to make some big modifications, so there are valid arguments to be made, in their defence. A lot of the changes are justified to change ...though I don't know that I agree with how they changed it, in every instance. Going so far as to remove any trace of it being in Japan, but rather making it look like it is set in the US, for example...

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» carcar435867 on March 30th, 2020, 11:29pm

@zarlan

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Why not? You were clearly fine with "Pikachu".
Not to mention the many fantasy works, that have strange and unfamiliar names, that kids love and never seem to have any problems with.


sure pikachu but you conveniently failed to mention the swath of pokemon that DID receive english names? Hello? Squirtle? charmander? Bulbasaur?

Do you seriously believe pokemon would have taken off in the west if they retained their japanese names of Zenigame, Hitokage, and Fushigidane?

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The general principles of translation, is that the reader/viewer is supposed to get the same thing, the same meaning/feeling/connotations/message, from the work, as the original audience. Names should never be translated. (nicknames and titles, however, generally should ...and names in fiction, that are actually more like nicknames/titles/descriptions/indicators)


And i can't really agree with this either. there's plenty of martial arts movies where they kept "sensei!" and "shifu!" both terms could potentially be translated as teacher or master but sensei has almost come to have its own meaning, at least with how it is seen and used in popular media.

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As such, a lot of things done in the name of localization, a lot of localization period, is wrong.
You shouldn't make it seem like the work is set in, for example, the US rather than Japan. That's ridiculous and wrong, on multiple levels. You shouldn't change Japanese names to "Western" ones. (though when the dog in Excel Saga is named "menchi", the translation should change that to, say, "mince", to reflect how this is her being named as mince meat, reflecting her status as emergency food)


and again this i really have to disagree with. let's look at Ace Attorney
In japanese the main character is called Ryūichi Naruhodō and Phoenix Wright in English. This character is so synonymous with the english name for me that I didn't even realize that it was a name concocted by the localization team. The localization team didn't attempt to maintain the word play in his name and i think that was the correct choice. i recall reading something about how the original japanese team avoided including overt japanese cultural references in the first game in hopes that it would be localized in english but then gave up on that in the second game which caused some issues for the localization team later? And we never even got an official localization of Dai Gyakuten Saiban: Naruhodō Ryūnosuke no Bōken which is a darn shame.

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» alidan on April 1st, 2020, 4:34am

Im of 2 thoughts.
1) I hate it when they make names english for no real reason. A kids show like pokemon, fine, I get it, but beyond that we are adults.
2) but at the same time, I absolutely can not stand korean or chinese style naming schemes where names are comprised of hard syllables. I have never been able to connect names to people in those styles and am only able to read korean or chinese comics if the setting removes that style entirely, or in the case where people 'localize' it... and when I say localize, I mean any other countries system but hard syllables, it doesn't need to be english but it just cant be that.

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» Otakuch on April 3rd, 2020, 3:21pm

No, I don't, I can't imagine manga with Turkish, or Character names Turkish.

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