Annoying subtitles that bothers Me/Myself and I/ to see them here at this site

I really don’t mind those kind of mistakes. Most of them (not all-some are WAY OFF) you’re able to understand what they mean.
On many dramas, I have a major problem with the texting/signs/memos not being translated. Several of the shows I’ve watched in the last year have had a great many text messages which are rarely translated. Sometimes you’re able to get the gist of the message based on what happens in the next few minutes other times not.
I remember one show having a sign out front of an establishment. They walk in and there’s total chaos. The sign out front explained what they might be walking into and I was clueless.
It won’t stop me from watching them, but if you want to do an “EXCEPTIONAL JOB” instead of an “okay” or “good job” it would make a huge difference.

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arkbaseholder_252 It won’t stop me from watching them, but if you want to do an “EXCEPTIONAL JOB” instead of an “okay” or “good job” it would make a huge difference.

I’m glad you are still viewing dramas here, and giving this site, the owners, and all staff members a chance since they are working on improvements to provide both; QUALITY and QUANTITY (signs in my opinion fall into the quantity category).

They have the HELP CENTER that you can address this specific issue you feel needs improvement. I know that certain issues might take longer to be looked into, but they can’t do anything, if they don’t know about them. That’s why I suggest you make a ticket request, and hopefully it will be resolved for you.

I think that compared to many years back, there has been here at this site, a lot of improvements made in general (J/K/C/etc. dramas/movies) But like everything in life, some things do have to be sacrificed, and maybe the sign and texting translations are one of them. I have experienced wanting to know what the text was about, but like you mentioned here, as you keep reading the subtitles, you will know what the text was all about. In regards to the sign I have never come across to something like you mention here especially in Chinese dramas/movies they do a great job in translating those.

Thanks for your input in this thread, and I sincerely hope they work out something for you. Please, don’t forget to contact the Help center.

G2G - Got to go

BB - be back

ILY - I love you

When my kids got their first cell phones some 20 to 15 years ago… they showed me the abbreviated texting but it wasn’t helping the English language department… kids in general got used to this language… that’s because then the screen was much smaller and there wasn’t a full sized keyboard, if you remember the small flip phones one key for like abc, so that’s why typing in shortcuts was faster.

Now the trend is using emojis since they often express what we want to say and can be customized as well :smile:, and since we are so busy everything must go fast… chop chop…

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I decided to make some notes as to why bad/incorrect English subtitles ‘‘annoy me,’’ and it’s simply because it will affect the Spanish translation, and that is something I dislike to see in my native language. A language I’m very proud of, and hold to the highest esteem. The Bilingual program in NYC schools were designed for those of us who came to live in USA, and would be faced with an ALL ENGLISH class, teachers, students etc. We had no way to communicate, but with sign language, and we had to endure the humiliation of their loud laughter in class if we pronounce a word wrong or simply said: ''I no speaky Inglish.-- ‘’

Their laughter created such insecurity in us that we would practically become mute until we could finally conquer the language barrier that was suffocating/killing us. These things no longer continues to happen in US because the Bilingual Program has been added to all elementary schools (I’m talking about English/Spanish only). When I’m annoyed about a subtitle, I’m not annoyed about the incorrect English, but about how this will affect the volunteer’s that are not too proficient in the English language (or worse yet, might be using a tool translator to do their sentence/subtitles in any drama/movies/shows). This situation is still going on here since we continue to have those controlling groups of people in the Spanish teams, that are greedy for contribution count, and resort to do things that are unethical and even damaging to this site since it affects the Quality in the Spanish subtitles (which it seems they don’t care at all as long as they get their contribution count to be getting higher and higher). I really wish they eliminate the contribution count (QC) and find a way to reward the volunteers not by NUMBERS (contributions in number amount), but in Quality of work done by them.

No she had me born (have no clue what was this about) No ella me hizo nacer. The Spanish sentence makes contradicting statements when they started the sentence with the word; NO.

You saw the flowers. (no question mark at end and it should have been)… Did you see the flowers? According to the scene they were asking if the person had seen the flowers. '‘You saw the flowers’'´ makes it like there was no question in the person’s mind that they did see the flowers, when in reality the person wanted to know if the person had seen the same flowers they had seen when )(he person went to that same garden).

We’ve grown that much (instead of: WE HAVE GROWN SO MUCH).
Hemos crecido ese tanto. (does not sound right in Spanish)
Hemos crecido tanto. (true statement/mature so much/ grown in height/ etc.)
The unstoppable feeling (instead of; This never ending feeling). These two translated in Spanish will be similar in meaning, but we must not forget the correct way of saying that phrase in English. The unstoppable feeling was obviously a GT sentence (I found it there exactly the same way).

And then she probably forgave (incomplete sentence) Incomplete sentence that made no sense in the scene whether written in English or Spanish.

Elderly lady dies sentence is as follow…Señora mayor muere y el subtítulo es el siguiente.
Ah, you didn’t know? SHE KICKED THE BUCKET. What was so hard to write she passed away or even she died. Kick the bucket…?.lol If we translate [she kicked the bucket] we would write: Ella pateó el balde/cubo. If the person is not too proficient in English or the saying [kicked the bucket] (means dying) the translation in Spanish would be so wrong. No matter what saying we may know, a person died and using this sentence [kicked the bucket] is insensitive and sooooo outdated (dates back to the 1800’s).

If you look through the history of this saying is more related to people dying by the means of suicide (they hanged themselves with the help of a bucket). It is advisable that unless the character really said such a sentence we never use it to inform others[that] someone has died.

minute 5:12:
There’s a CRACK in the ankle bone ( EGGS CRACK BONES FRACTURE)
Hay una raja/abertura/grieta en el hueso del tobillo (This would be an insult to a Doctor since bones fracture/break, not crack) Los huesos se fracturan o rompen, no son rajados o una grieta. I believe this was another Translation tool like GT sentence/subtitle since on GT break and crack are translated in Spanish as [romper] which means [break]. This is obviously a non proficiency English subber/translator since anyone proficient enough would have used the correct word in the English sentence also.
Drives me to the conclusion person doing the English translation was not proficient enough in the English language. This is the main cause of the domino effect that will affect every OL translating this sentence (saw it here in a Chinese drama).

That concludes my explanation in more details as to why some subtitles do annoy me, and I don’t want any misunderstanding I did it mainly as a criticism since that was never the purpose of this thread.

It seems Original language (K/C) to English translations are making a lot more mistakes lately, and I’m hoping the CEO/higher up’s are aware of these things going on here lately, and get to the bottom/source of this issue/problem going on now as soon as possible. Like I always say; a disease caught on time can be cured. Left untreated can destroy and even kill[end] us.

There seems to be an epidemic of people using contraction, and when using them they are making the subtitle/sentence incorrect.

I mustn’t written as musn’t
Mustn’t is a contraction of the words must not. Although when contracted the T is not pronounced in modern English, it remains part of the word. Since the is no such word as mus, there is no contraction written as musn’t. It has to be written as mustn’t.

They are using contractions that some are not too familiar with like; For example, I’d can be used as I would or I had. I have actually seen the contraction I’d used incorrectly in a sentence in several dramas on different sites, and I wonder if there is a possibility this subber is the same person making that same mistake all over the place.

Subtitles/Sentence hard to understand because of the use of wrong contraction.
I hoped that I’d never even remember you.
I’d be able to forget your name and your face.
So when I’d run into you somewhere, I’d wonder.
My brain is too small can’t fit most things.
We are doesn’t fit.
Rumors that Greeks won’t blink. Especially for a woman.
Can’t miss of other man.
The price is 25 meters?
We’re still in run-in period. (I can’t make sense of this sentence as hard as I try).
My card is defrosted. (credit card was likely [frozen] [not defrosted] so it could not be used).
Unspeakable situation instead of Tragic situation.
Where will he go instead of Where did he go?
Are you going partying on Friday? Instead of Are you going to the party on Friday?
(This subtitle is here at RViki)
Not at all. It’s on my way, anyways.
In Spanish saw several here too
Asi se mira?
Puede que no lo acabo de escuchar.
Revuelve el alma, cierto? I believe they should have written: Conmueve el alma, cierto?
Aren’t you too unworried? [Chinese drama]

The past few days I came across this very interesting situation that I feel it needs mention here since it’s related to when we are doing subtitles, and we need to work our magic when doing a bit of research work.

So I was doing my English to Spanish Translation/Subtitles/Sentence in a drama, and I came across a sentence that the FL said: ''If I don’t understand, I’ll just think as myself as a wallflower. (Chinese drama).

In Spanish I wrote; wallflower as her not been invited to the meeting because in Spanish saying ‘‘wallflower’’ it’s like saying: ‘‘QUE ESTOY PINTADA EN LA PARED.’’ which in reality means that ‘‘act like …she’s not even there’’ so the saying depends on the context of the conversation: Therefore according to the scene I saw it as… ''that since she wasn’t even invited there, for them to act like she’s not there at all,and it was fine with her.

Si no los puedo entender, sólo me consideraré como una ‘‘flor de pared’’ (dicho que significa no fue invitada).
Now, in the Spanish speaking sense of the word, ‘‘pintada en la pared’’ is the same thing as since I wasn’t invited, act like I’m not even here or I don’t exist.

Cuando hay dichos o como se llaman en Inglés ‘‘idioms’’ se torna más complejo simplemente por que los dichos en diferentes países, se escriben de diferentes maneras. Me alegro mucho que pasé por esta experiencia porque tuve tiempo de analizar más las cosas.

Por ejemplo cuando busqué el sinónimo de ‘‘wallflower’’ encontré un detalle muy particular que me dejó un poco confundida hasta que hice mi ‘‘bosquejo’’ ‘‘research’’ en Inglés.

wallflower meaning from
introvert-shy person-shy thing.

synonym of wallflower# 0 results for wallflower (

So basically we have to work with what we know ourselves, in order to be able to work around the word used in that drama: the word ‘‘wallflower’’

I feel is very important for OL translators to try to use common words since it makes the life of the translator much easier, and they will make less mistakes in their translation.

I believe this is a pre-subbed drama with little to no editing since another sentence was impossible for me to translate since the English translation made no sense nor the words used matched up with what the character was trying to convey in the meeting.,

I have also seen pre-subs that the comma hasn’t been removed by the editor, and that kept the subtitle in an awkward translation mode, that made no sense to the subber-reader-viewer.

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Funnily German has about the same word known as Mauerblümchen which is the literal translation if wallflower. However, in German it can refer to the meaning mentioned above, but it usually refers to a plain woman that doesn’t attract others (has to stand at the wall because nobody wants to dance with her).


Es mejor que usan los idiomas cuando es possible. Una persona dicho que todavia usando las palabras simples porque es fácil para comprender.
Creo que es mejor si usarían los modismos cuando es posible. Una persona me dijo que siempre usa palabras simples porque son más fáciles para comprender.

Personally think any language will lose its beauty if you try to just simplify it just so someone can understand.


Thank you so much for mentioning this. Is interesting to know how OL translate ‘‘sayings’’ or idioms.

That’s what I discovered while working in the drama, that wallflower has so many different meaning in different countries/regions/Island etc… So I was thinking that when I gave the translation in Spanish I totally changed the meaning that probably the Chinese idiom might have. Although ‘‘pintada en la pared’’ literal translation is ‘‘painted in the wall’’ means basically the same thing as the poor girl who no ones ask her to dance or the actress in the drama that was ignored and not invited to the meeting on purpose.

Yes, I did just that, but I mentioned it here because I love to share things I discover through my work as a subber. I love to get input from others too when it comes to idioms since it’s a bit complex when in OL might not mean the same thing, but in my case in this drama I got close enough.

Thank you so much for your input, I appreciate it so much!

En los pasados días me encontré con esta situación muy interesante que siento necesita debe ser mencionada aquí, ya que está relacionada cuando hacemos subtítulos y necesitamos trabajar con la magia de hacer un poco de investigación.

.En los últimos días me encontré con esta situación muy interesante que creo que debe mencionarse aquí, ya que está relacionada con cuando estamos haciendo subtítulos, y necesitamos trabajar nuestra magia al hacer un poco de trabajo de investigación.

Hi @ilikedeadclowns

Is not my purpose to offend you in any way shape or form, but as a responsible person when it comes to Eng/Span translations; I wanted to mention that your Spanish sentence made very little sense. But knowing the subject in question, I more or less knew what you was trying to convey in your sentence. It would be irresponsible on my part, if I don’t make you aware of this happening, and I hope you appreciate my concern.

This is Your Sentence…
Es mejor que usan los idiomas cuando es possible. Una persona dicho que todavia usando las palabras simples porque es fácil para comprender.

Your sentence using Google translate in English
It is better that they use the languages when possible. One person idiom (gt wrote still instead of idiom) using the simple words because is easy to understand.

NOTE: ‘‘using the simple words because is easy to understand.’’ [This sentence is categorized as an incomplete sentence]. Basically, some words were missing that would have made the sentence in Spanish more comprehensible by the Spanish reader.

I am very happy that you are practicing your Spanish. I believe your native language is Portuguese? Correct me if I’m wrong.

Your English sentence: (missing words that are essential for better understanding)
Personally think any language will lose its beauty if you try to just simplify it just so someone can understand.

My English sentence adding essential missing words for better understanding.
Personally, I think any idiom (don’t know why you wrote language) will lose its beauty if you just try to simplify it, just so that someone can understand it.

If ANYONE wants to get offended, it’s on you because all I’m doing here is; trying to help others, so that this mistakes are corrected for the improvement of ANY given language. Especially when OL (German/Italian translations are also involved, and will be affected too).

PEACE AND LOVE for ALL…:peace_symbol::peace_symbol::peace_symbol::peace_symbol::dove::dove::dove::love_you_gesture::love_you_gesture::love_you_gesture::love_you_gesture::love_you_gesture::hearts::hearts::hearts::hearts::hearts::smiling_face_with_three_hearts::smiling_face_with_three_hearts::smiling_face_with_three_hearts::smiling_face_with_three_hearts::smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

Es mejor que usan los idiomas cuando es possible. Una persona dicho que todavia usando las palabras simples porque es fácil para comprender.

Intended the meaning to be: It’s better that they use idioms whenever possible. A person told me that they always use simple words because its easy to understand. I should have used modismos instead of the miscognate idiomas. Usaría instead of usando as well. Would have been better, had I checked machine translation before posting.

I’m out of touch with Spanish. Also, I speak awkwardly regardless of language.

Creo que es mejor si usarían los modismos cuando es posible. Una persona me dijo que siempre usa palabras simples porque son más fáciles para comprender.

Feel free to correct me, it’s a learning experience.

I believe your native language is Portuguese?


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Feel free to correct me, it’s a learning experience.

Thank you so much for your very respectful answer.

You did great, and added more points that I feel will help others understand things even much better than the way I explained above.

I love learning different things from OL so much. To me, myself and I, it’s fascinating how the words might have different meaning, but some might mean the same thing or even something totally different of what we think it is; Like [Chicha] is an alcoholic drink in some countries, but in my Island, it means something very personal, and even rude to say in public. I laugh about it now, and I’m happy I learned something new along the way.

Have a wonderful and joyful weekend!

From time to time I go and check the improvements on English to Spanish translation on Google translate, and I may say; they have done a great job lately (compared to translation in the past that were sometimes useless, and just gave me a good laugh). I am very pleased at this point, and happily realized they have been working hard in improving their Eng/Span translation. I also noticed that if the OL[German/Dutch/Portuguese etc…] proficiency is really good, the English/Spanish translation will be great, too.

I took something I wrote and copy/paste on GT to see what a non english reader would receive as a Spanish translation. There are a few things that needed correction, but one (male/female changes) might not be doable since we don’t have a way to identify the writer as male/female etc.
Example of what I wrote…

Did you really read everything I wrote there or for unknown reason to me; maybe you didn’t understood what I wrote there?

Because the actor need to maintain his decorum and respect towards the other actor, I felt his behavior was totally uncalled for since all he had to do was be more sensitive and not be so obvious in his disgust attitude towards the kissing scene. Although I’m not angry at the older actor at all, but at the people that allowed this video to be publicly viewed when it’s painful to watch.

Let’s say the older guy is straight, and the younger guy went ‘‘overboard’’ in his tongue kissing scene, the older guy still needed to deal with the situation a bit more professionally. I hope the video is no longer able to be viewed to the public for the sake of the younger actor’s self esteem. Even if the issue was bad taste or bad breath, he could have played it off since after all, he is an actor.

¿Realmente leíste todo lo que escribí allí o por alguna razón desconocida para mí; ¿Quizás no entendiste lo que escribí allí? ----------Here I would have preferred to keep the Q in lower case letter [q] since it was part of the previous sentence.

Debido a que el actor necesita mantener su decoro [I would have preferred they used here [PROPER CONDUCT] y respeto hacia el otro actor, sentí que su comportamiento estaba totalmente fuera de lugar ya que todo lo que tenía que hacer era ser más sensible y no ser tan obvio en su actitud de disgusto hacia la escena del beso. Aunque no estoy enojado [ENOJADA since I am a female] con el actor mayor, sino con las personas que permitieron que este video se viera públicamente cuando es doloroso verlo.

Digamos que el chico mayor es heterosexual, y el chico más joven “se pasó de la raya” en su escena de beso con la lengua, [beso de lengua] el chico [hombre/tipo] mayor aún necesita lidiar con la situación un poco más profesionalmente. Espero que el público ya no pueda ver el video por el bien de la autoestima del actor más joven. Incluso si el problema fuera el mal gusto o el mal aliento, podría haberlo jugado [play it off is simulado not jugado they gave the word a literal translation] ya que después de todo, él es un actor.

PS. I will suggest to GT to write for example: enojado (a), El (ella) don’t know if it can be worked out, but it won’t hurt to try and see…:smiley::smiley::smiley::smiley:

I saw this subtitle in a drama, and I asked myself; was this a bad pre-sub in a drama or a wrong grammar usage by the subber?

English sentence:
His wife asked for a divorce some days ago. And that gave him motive. [I consider this an incomplete sentence]
Excerpt from Thesaurus
Starting the next sentence with AND…
some people consider this to be improper, so don’t be surprised if you have a teacher or boss that takes you to task over this “mistake.” Still, you probably don’t want to overdo it and start all of your sentences with the word and .

Another thing…
English sentence:
His wife asked for a divorce some days ago. And that gave him motive. [I consider this an incomplete sentence]
But it has a solution…
Excerpt from DEl MAR College
How do you fix an incomplete sentence?
Fragments are incomplete sentences that don’t make sense on their own. They can be fixed easily by using a comma to connect them to an existing sentence that makes them complete or by providing the missing information…
In this situation motive to what? would have kept the sentence as fragmented/incomplete, unless they added the motive/reason.

A lot of subbers are leaving the pre-subs as is because to them it makes sense. This things happen when a subber is not too proficient in the English language or with the Grammatical rules of the language.
They need to put a lot more effort and research in their subtitles/sentence structure, and/or translation since it can affect the translation in ALL OL.

This is the kind of presub I see a LOT. Not just with ‘and’ sentences, but also with ‘but’ and ‘so.’ If the two parts appear in the same segment, I will almost always change it. Otherwise, I sometimes let the pattern of speech lead me because people do often put a clear break between the two, and it’s not always inherently ‘wrong’ to start a sentence with any of the above words.

Overall, incomplete sentences have been very prevalent in presubs that I have been editing lately. Many, many sentences lack a subject these days.


Overall, incomplete sentences have been very prevalent in presubs that I have been editing lately. Many, many sentences lack a subject these days.

I have seen this going on a lot lately, and noticed that certain ‘‘editors’’ don’t fix the incomplete sentence, and leave them completely as the pre- sub came in the drama. I mentioned it here because it makes no sense to me why some editors are leaving an incomplete sentence (even wrong grammar usage), when they should know that their job is to fix those wrong pre- sub’s in dramas.

I have seen your editing work, and I always knew you would be able to catch those things, and fix them right away. I get frustrated to see so many editors in dramas, and they still have this subtitles in the dramas/movies. Any person that is proficient enough in the English language would never leave such a mistake as a subtitle.

The AND doesn’t bother me as much as trying to guess the incomplete sentence/subtitle. I have fixed them when I do my Spanish subtitles since I know for a fact there is words missing that are essential so the viewer can comprehend the subtitle that they are reading.

Another thing I have encountered a lot lately is; missing complete/full sentence the character/actor/actress is saying, but they are not being translated. I hope they are not ‘‘rushing’’ to their many other projects, and thinking ‘‘no one’’ will notice what they are doing. This is not new because it happened in the past so much more than now since now we have paid subbers.

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What do I mean when I state that some subbers; ‘‘did with a translation tool a literal translation?’’

An example I can mention here is the one I found in a drama I worked on: ”Te estoy tomando el pelo.” The subber wrote as a translation/subtitle in the drama: “I’m taking your hair.”

Taking is [tomando] or [cogiendo] in Spanish. But… incorrect to be used in this sentence/subtitle.

In reality the sentence in Spanish means: I’m just kidding with you or…
I was playing with you or
I was joking with you or
I was (just) fooling with you.

Excerpt from WIKIPEDIA
What do you mean by literal translation?

Literal translation, direct translation or word-for-word translation, is a translation of a text done by translating each word separately, without looking at how the words are used together in a phrase or sentence.

I ONCE was guilty of doing ‘‘literal translations’’ in my teenage years, when I was trying and was so obsessed in learning the Hebrew language. We always lived in Highly populated Jewish area and felt that if I knew the language I might be able to ‘‘communicate’’ with them. Little did I know, most in my area spoke a different dialect.

Excerpt from Britannica
Yiddish language , one of the many Germanic languages that form a branch of the Indo-European language family. Yiddish is the language of the Ashkenazim, central and eastern European Jews and their descendants. Written in the Hebrew alphabet, it became one of the world’s most widespread languages, appearing in most countries with a Jewish.
population by the 19th century. Along with Hebrew and Aramaic, it is one of the three major literary languages of Jewish history.

I wanted to add this information here because I feel is very important to know that before learning ANY language; we should do a lot of research on it, so that we can understand more the components we need to ‘‘use’’ that in the long run will make it easier for us to learn this new language. NOT just go to a translation Tool and in the end, make a complete fool of ourselves (like I did).

I have noticed that idioms/sayings or however is called in your part of the world, they tend to be easily done as a literal translation because the ‘‘idiom’’ might not be familiar to us since different countries have different sayings and in some cases; we have never ever heard that particular saying/idiom in our life.

I WOULD LOVEEEEEEEEEEEEEE to see a section/topic in Discussion where EVERY LANGUAGE of the world (if possible), would add their MOST common sayings/idioms, and especially their meaning, so that we can become familiarize with new/different sayings if we ever come across them in any drama/movie etc. and can offer a better translation rather than a literal translation bc we don’t know any better.

So if anyone cares to write their popular sayings/idioms and meaning in this TOPIC it will be more than WELCOME, and I hope you care enough to share the love. If we had always worked here as a TEAM, instead of creating barriers of communication with each other, this site would have become a Gold mine for all that ‘‘touched it’’ (worked in it). You know… the saying; ‘‘the midas touch.’’ :wink:

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A common occurrence in subtitling errors is homonyms which I can only put down to a lack of attention.

So, in one drama, I saw a few years back, a mother and son were having a heart to heart which led the mother to attribute certain things to ‘faith’.

The translation sounded plausible enough, but then I realised she meant ‘fate’.

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