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Mistakes/mistranslations in Scanlations

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Post #547826
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4:14 pm, Apr 27 2012
Posts: 7

I have been reading online manga for years and I am also studying Japanese at University.
I sometimes buy manga in Japanese to read for practice and yesterday I was reading 'purikyuu' by Motomi Kyousuke and I wanted to make sure I had some of the meanings right so I looked at the online scans and saw that a lot of the phrases had either been translated slightly wrong or even completely made up! I couldn't believe that I had been reading mistranslated manga for so long!

Has anyone else noticed this? The storyline is still the same, but the meanings of each individual sentence are different. I know that sometimes it is necessary to change the phrasing because Japanese doesn't also translate very well, but there were so many cases where it was entirely unnecessary!

Maybe I am just being a bit of a linguistics nerd, but I wondered what other people thought?

Post #547829
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4:34 pm, Apr 27 2012
Posts: 261

Well, i think the different meanings of the individual sentences are fine if they do still convey what the author is saying. As you said, it is necessary to change the phrasing and we can't just translate japanese word for word into english, that would probably make no sense and lose the message the author is conveying.

I remember reading Tegami Bachi where in a chapter, it was mistranslated that a character said that he was a girl and i had a shock when i found out he was a guy later on after stupidly believing he was a girl. But anyway i feel that it is up to the translators how they want to translate & it is not an easy job so i believe changing the expressions would make translating easier for them.

Perhaps if you are really particular, you could read the japanese raws instead? confused

Post #547835
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 Super Mod

4:58 pm, Apr 27 2012
Posts: 6208

Majority of readers don't really know how to read Japanese so most wouldn't know any better to care.

Post #547837
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5:13 pm, Apr 27 2012
Posts: 128

Some of them don't know the meaning of the sentence and just gloss it over with a completely unrelated sentence. I saw quite a few (from lousy scanlators). But of course I also saw a lot whose translations were worded better than I could ever imagine. Some of those scanlations were translated from Chinese and the lines could be lost in translation.

Sometimes it isn't the translator's fault, but if they can't be bothered to translate something properly by flipping the dictionary (never heard of a language student without a dictionary), then they shouldn't waste their time translating. That, I believe, is the 'translator's ethics' in scanlation. And to always check their work.

Post #547839

5:26 pm, Apr 27 2012
Posts: 20

I also find these a lot however you have to understand the differences in culture. If you were to tell the expression as is in English then readers won't understand. This is where making up the content comes into play as long as it's the same message.

The part where the made up phrases are unnecessary are probably the editors faults or misunderstood meanings from the translators.

Also a few examples would be good. :]

Remeber kids

Hope is the worst evil of all, for it prolongs the torment of man.
Post #547841

5:46 pm, Apr 27 2012
Posts: 198

You can stick four Scanlation groups in a single room, and come out with five different versions.

Most of the time I can gloss over it, but there are plenty of occasions where it's so blatantly glaring that I start holding it against the translators for their obvious lack of QC. Nothing like seeing an old, wise mentor say something like "Wow, this guy is cool."

Post #548128
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12:39 am, Apr 29 2012
Posts: 7

wow, so many different opinions! Yeah, I appreciate that i isn't an easy job translating - and especially sometimes having to work to a deadline as well! I was just baffled by how different some of the phrases were that could have been kept completely the same without losing any comprehension.

I think most people will probably not care, and maybe it is only the ones who have an interest in the language itself who wonder about these things... bu I guess I am lucky that I have the choice of reading raw and getting the original meaning along wih the cultural references

Post #548135
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1:15 am, Apr 29 2012
Posts: 701

Lol I am a lot more disappointed when there are obvious English mistakes in scanlations.

"I'll shut your mouth~~~~~ with mine~~~"

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