Sunday, October 11, 2015

We often say, "We have to be consistent with our words." and some similar utterances. However, what does it mean to be consistent?

To be consistent means that A matches B in all aspects that no one will argue that there is (even slight) different idea on one thing or object. When we denote the same thing in whatever pages and occasions, the word used is consistent. The word used in page 1, page 2 and page 3 is same. There is no difference at all, except for special cases, such as another phrase (a phrase consisting of same words, but standing with different words, causing them to have different meaning and it should be done to be equivalently correct against the source), different context that really requires it to be made so to reflect the source (e.g. Contact would usually be translated as Kontak for a menu tab, but Contact us would be differently translated as, again, word Kontak will never be enough to reflect the Contact us. The function of word is different. Contact is a noun while Contact us is a sentence, consisting of verb (Contact) and a complement (us - object pronoun). Upon this reason, they should be differently treated. In this case, the translation cannot be considered as inconsistent translation. It is different context), and so on.

We are an active user of PayPal recently and found out that PayPal adopts the automated region based website policy, meaning that all users do not need to set their language settings to be their locale. PayPal will read their region and will automatically convert the language the region uses. This is a breakthrough, of course and this, of course, costs a lot of money to localize into one language. The purpose is one, to respect their users, thus they can use the platform without having to learn English.

Still, it is not that simple. Further question may appear such as, "has the translation been fully consistent?". The case we raise here is not a way we criticize our fellow translation company's or a translator's and editor's work as the play maker of the translation of this payment processing company website. More than that, we would like to share what we think it is supposed to share for mutual learning. Now please look at the picture we compose below:
You can see that message after you transferred the fund to the beneficiary and it reads Lihat perincian transaksi, meaning Check out the transaction details (see the transaction details) and this can be clicked. When you click on it, you will then be directed to another page that will read Rincian Transaksi. Perincian and Rincian are correct terms at different levels. Informally, rincian is correct, but not an Indonesian standard, while Perincian is the standard one. In this common practice, the information will be, at glance, understood and this will surely lead the users to confusion. Why is it so? It is because it is not consistent. The first instance uses Perincian, while the second one uses rincian. We know that it really denotes the same thing, from any perspectives and context.

When we do the LQA, consistency is included. Some people will ask why this should be included while this is a normal practice. In our opinion, it has to be rated looking at the case we raise above. At least, the website translated will look elegant in addition to not confusing the users. Any opinion? Please share! Quote? Contact us at for free quote and consultation.


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