The Gallery of Wrongness – Page 4 (ItalianNews.it)
July 8, 2010 1 Comment
ItalianNews.it / SiciliaInformazioni.com / ItaliaInformazioni.com ⁞ Report card: D+ ⁞ Here’s an enormous site with hundreds of articles, scores of writers, and a mission that is apparently quite serious. In other words, it’s an awful lot of work for a truly shameful result. Why does ItalianNews.it use Italian “passive” translators (those translating into a second language rather than their native one) rather than English-speaking translators? Why is ItalianNews.it content to publish articles by translators incapable of writing decent English? These are the eternal questions we ask in the Gallery of Wrongness.
And here’s another. Who could possibly be the intended audience for material like this? An English speaker, faced with a sentence like this one — “Just a matter for questioning about this pyramid built by the court: the good education produces a “gentle” growth in children, a personality put in a mainstream society according to the rules of citizenship and respect for others?” — will click away in three seconds. Unless you’re truly desperate for information about a specific event, you won’t spend any time trying to make sense of babble like this. And Italian speakers can read the same article in Italian.
So what’s the real danger of a site like ItalianNews.it? It’s this. Amateur translators work at places like ItalianNews.it for a time. Later, they put the experience on their résumés and use it to help them move on to another job in the same field. After a while, they’re considered “professional” translators. No one tells them their work is shoddy or that they should be embarrassed by their English. Instead, the house of cards keeps on growing.
In other words, sites like ItalianNews.it help legitimize bad translations and unqualified translators.
And what about the “translators” who signed these fiascos? (ItalianNews.it is one of those occasions when not citing the translator’s name would have been a wiser move.) Most of the pieces are “translated” by a woman who indicates she is affiliated with the John Milton Institute (a private language school in Sicily), where she teaches in a master’s program in business development. It will come as no surprise that she claims to be “perfectly bilingual.”
Here are a few other examples of ItalianNews.it’s “perfect” English:
“The sun was high and, under my naked feet, the pavement already manifested its arrogant heat. (From “… Welcome to Palermo, Sir!!”)
“News is those that force you to come to terms with yourself. If you are a parent, but even if you think it eventually will be…. What sin have stained. According to the Court of Milan, “have not brought their children to the feelings”. Is not a “culpa in vigilando” i.e. “culpa in supervision”, the one with which parents sometimes make the accounts….” (From “Boys raped a little girl, convicted parents.” The headline alone would make you laugh … if the subject matter weren’t so tragic.)
“In the meantime the Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has received a plea-letter by the lays of the centre-right … to ask for a “soft law” on the living will, which does not regulate in a strict way the issue and leaves space to the will of each person.” (From “Living will.”)
“A delicious caprese cake or an enormous Mont Blanc, or an enticing fruit tart. If you want to lose wait, you can just look at the pictures of these delicacies.” (From “The new frontier of diets.”)
“The password for those who decide to spend a holiday in this type of place is “leave home noisy things”. (From “From a noisy city to a holiday with the monks.”)
“This is not the plot of a new film, but the incredible fact told today … of a young Sicilian couple. It all started with the honey money of the young Sicilians. A relaxing cruise, maybe too relaxing, especially for he man, who had to keep an eye on his wife. Because she, a blond 25-year-old, let herself go with a black waiter and had sexual intercourse. Just one, amongst the many had with her husband.” (From “Marriage in Caltanissetta.”)
“So there are 9 million Italians who uses homeopathy.” (From “Italians like homeopathy.”
“Captain Umberto Nobile, on board the airship Norge, was flying over the geographical north pole, leaving fall-down on the ice pack a Norwegian flag, as well as an Italian one and one U.S.” (From “The mail that comes from the ice.”)
“Does the fact that the four beautiful ladies part of the government never object – unlike Rosy Bindi – make acceptable their beauty even if they do not have other qualities?” (From “Italy? The Banana Republic.”)
Headlines: “Italians in lupins advance”; “Chestnuts, a journey throughout history between taste and passion”; “Miss Italy, the reality show that cuddles Italians”; “The five traps on the Prime Minister’s way” (hint: this last one is NOT about golf.)