Translation Proofreading & Back-translation
Expert translation proofreading services
& back-translation services…
… from experienced, professional mother-tongue translators.
So – what is translation proofreading?
Translation proofreading is a review of text to ensure the translation accurately reflects the source, and to catch any errors. These range from simple typos that cost creddibility (like that), to more serious errors. The classic is omitting “not” (yes, it happens – and yes, we also proofread English).
Translation proofreading also corrects any translator’s misunderstanding of text. English is often ambiguous, and loosely phrased. If the translator isn’t really familiar with your material, misinterpretation is all too easy. That’s another great reason to build a long-term relationship with one provider, instead of bouncing between the cheapest quotes as less experienced language buyers will tend to do.
It also catches not quite right synonyms. All languages have words that mean almost, but not quite, the same thing. Getting it wrong can range from the grating to the hilarious, but almost always the unwanted.
Translation proofreading ensures it’s right.
OK. And back-translation?
Back translation is about establishing – or not – confidence, and can be very revealing. Back-translating a contract that a client had asked his agent to translate, much to the client’s surprise we found whole clauses had been re-written in the agent’s favour!
Back-translation can have serious impacts. That means you should only use very well-trusted and professionally-qualified experienced translators, mother-tongue in the source language. Here again, it’s essential to use a partner with a wide enough pool of good translators.
Pen and paper? Or screen and keyboard?
Many proofreaders actually prefer to work with pen and paper, then update the digital file once they’ve decided their preferred edits. The human eye picks up on not just the different text colour, but also the very different-looking handwriting, helping the proofreader to immediately see their changes.
Back-translation however is usually done on-screen, in the same way as ordinary translation. In fact, it IS ordinary translation; so back-translation of a text that was translated originally from French source to English target would be handled by a French translator, translating the English back into French.