Thursday, June 13, 2013

Quick Side Job

I've been asked to correct the English on a website touting Thai massage.  This little job, I thought, would be easy since inserting descriptive words into an existing text is simple.  When I opened the webpage the following is what I found:

The intellect massages Thai plan have inherit arrive late long ago. At The best, get foresee the
worth and maintain heal keep for serve give with you, long more ago 14 year with warmly greeting
and acquainted in Thai Lanna atmosphere.

If you want to avoid from confusing life for liberates the stiffness and relax, The Best Thai Massage

is the best choice most comfortably for you with the best place in the middle of city as luxuriouy

The best receive support establishment standard massage for the health from Thailand Government.

OK, it is marginally understandable, but needs
more than mere "clean-up".  It needs to be

Most Thai text on signage, brochures,
and websites are at best, backward,
misspelled, wrong words or confused
words.  Most of us find this quaint and
amusing, but in certain cases the meaning
is lost in translation.  If one tries to use
Google Translate, for instance, what comes
out is less than understandable.  This
translation for instance when the boy who
tried to get rid of the pigeons in my attic
wanted to go home and come back another day:

It says: "It will help you have some time.
But if you can make your own bird. 
Then again I would not dare for fear of

So as I rewrite the text with the help of

Nut, my neighbor for the original
meaning, I realize I am removing the
"Thainess", which westerners enjoy
because this "exoticness" is what makes Thailand
so fun to visit.  Am I really helping, or making the
website plain and boring for foreigners?

No comments:

Post a Comment