It's a little known fact, but English language editors


are the most important members of a team for the “other” language moderators.

Not the CM. Nor the Kor-Eng subbers. The editors.

Because, when I have to sit there for 5 min thinking what the heck is this subtitle supposed to mean (ie. it was too literal for me to understand or has a wrong person as subject), just like any other normal person, I will stop subbing and go watch something instead.

And then the hard work of all the other diligent team members (segmenters, subbers etc.) goes to waste.

Good editors in the team are the deal-breakers.

Since we know that 80% of subtitles are in “other” languages, and a large majority of them are translated from the English language, I hereby seriously appeal for establishing a new position in the Viki community called English Editor.

As in, this should have happened a long time ago, Viki. :confused:

Help - Newbie English Editor
Viki's standards being low af

I second that! They should be given their own position and not need to be added as moderators anymore.
Maybe you should change your post to “Features requests & feedback”? I hope Viki staff will take notice of it.


I’m for it!
Even in french. If ever mod lock an episode, the editor have to wait mod to be able to unlock a episode to work on. And, we don’t live all in same country.

It would be nice to have a “editor” position besides Modo + CM.


On most of the shows I’m on have an English editor: Memory, Pied Piper, Goodbye Mr. Black, Jackpot, Reply 1988, Marriage Contract, and The Merchant: Gaekju 2015.

They hold the position of English editor. Some can actually read the Korean.

Sometimes they’re professional editors in the field, other times they’re just ordinary English speakers like you and me with a good grip on grammar. Sometimes I act like the English editor for certain subbers because it makes sense when you read the English with my Korean brain on. Yet complete wth… if you read the English with my English brain.

They are excellent and very very useful for the team. I always learn a lot because I might not know some terms that are more common since I’m quite new to “adulting.”

It also gives a different perspective. One benefit could be better balance between literal translation vs. what seems more natural in English.


Just because I’ve seen viki reply back to the mini mode player post it might be useful to add it there as well. ^-^


That’s so true!
Also, the english editor should either be a native speaker or really fluent in english.
I guess most other language subbers can’t speak the video’s language and they rely on the english subs for genders, tenses and other details important to the plot.


That’s true!

Even the best subbers can get confused with the <-> between languages. They are only human. If I see a bad translation (word for word, maybe) and I know the source language, I might get the meaning and move on because it clicked in my brain, but the link is broken for everyone else.

But I fear there are not enough volunteers, there are projects with really bad subs that remain like that for months. And all other languages subsequently get bad subs, and we don’t even know.

Personally, I had a drama where the segments were really bad, to the point I couldn’t make sense who was speaking each line in a dialogue, and the translation mixed you, he, she etc. I did the best I could, but without a dedicated English editor I fear much of all the volunteers’ hard work isn’t reflected in the end result.

I suggest you do a poll (there are many tools online) and send Viki the results. I would sign with my profile name.


Slightly off-topic, but I wish we had more translators from Korean/ Chinese/ Japanese etc directly to other languages.

English subbers are the most important now, but they are overworked and also there are many things lost during the language transition, inevitably.

It takes many years to master a language to the point where you can say “yep, now I can translate”, unfortunately…


I have seen vikians who speek Mandarin or another sino-dialect possibly and Spanish fluently.

I have yet to see a Korean-Spanish vikian though I’ve heard they exist. I’ve met like 6 Korean-Argentine-Americans in real life and one Korean-Colombian-American family.

In the world finding Koreans who can decently translate Chinese or Japanese is common, yet they aren’t drawn to Viki.

One TE I have worked with before can do Korean - French.

For fun I attempted to second-hand sub in Korean for Imperial Doctress from Mandarin with almost no knowledge of Mandarin. Couldn’t do it because of non-familiarity with Chinese history and Korean language. The best part of Asiatic-Asiatic language is that most words don’t ever have to be translated you just write the cognate.

A better example would be let’s say a reference to General Liang. I would know it because it’s part of the general bank of knowledge but would not be familiar with more obscure things like the buddhist that brought the lotus scrolls and the monkey for ex…


Absolutely! I work with ESL students and can often tease out their meaning even if I don’t speak their language. There are many times when I see a subtitle that I think I can make a little better. I would absolutely volunteer to do this.


I wouldn’t want vikians who can just decently translate, to be honest. People often are too eager to help (or show off) and overestimate their abilities. And they either translate poorly or resort to Google (shudder). I think only people with very good knowledge of both the original (audio or existing subs) and the target language should translate. Knowledge of specific history etc is important, but I see it as a specialization, not as mandatory.

I hope one day I can do Korean- Greek, but that day is far, far away in the future…


I was talking about legacy speakers, or whose parents immigrated to say Spanish speaking or Portuguese speaking countries lol

The Chinese and Japanese well depends :stuck_out_tongue:


These would be the best. There are Korean- Greeks, obviously, but I don’t think there are any on Viki. Especially since our grammar/ syntax are very different from both Korean and English, a direct translation would make a huge difference.


Not just for translations.
They would be a great help at editing the translated subs, too. Just like english editors do.


Are you including translation editors in this appreciation? Because a good translation editor makes it so much easier to do general English editing. It obviously depends on who did the original subbing, but sometimes things don’t translate as well, I need an explanation for an idiom or cultural reference, or I just have a question to make sure a change I’d like to make is going to stay faithful to the original sentence. A good translation editor is worth their weight in gold.


Amen to that! Translation editors are the key for an editing team to run smoothly. I’ve been lucky to have encountered a couple of amazing ones. They are crucial to the overall editing process.


For Imperial Doctress I found it hard because I did not have the analog experience. If I had perhaps subbed Heo Joon or Jewel in the Palace it would’ve been much easier because I would have the background experience. It’s not a must but… it’s much like having someone jump into calculus without a good foundation in graphs. It’s not mandatory, but very very useful.
I stopped because I realized bad subbing would be worse than no subs at all.
Although it is not mandatory to know the language, I think in my case knowing the sentence structure may be helpful so that the nuances are translated properly.

It’s hard to do from the English because… then the Korean becomes very rude. There is very specific court terminology used in both languages.



It’s much, much easier to write a new sub accurately, than to correct a slightly incorrect/unnatural-sounding sub.

While I’m myself decent in English grammar, I would never in a million years consider being an English language editor just to correct someone’s grammar. A good editor needs to be well-acquainted with the culture of expression of both input and output language.


Generally, an Editor position would be nice and I think easy to implement for editors not only of English but of other languages as well. Their role may not be source-important (as for English editors), but as for the end result in other languages, they are often the saving grace. Especially considering the fact that most translators are amateurs and sometimes overestimate their skills both in English and in their mothertongue/output language.
I’m speaking as an editor here. If often happens that it takes me more to edit than to translate the x*%&%#@ thing myself.

Having an official “designation” means other people could easily spot people who edit from their profile, whereas now they are listed as subbers or moderators and you don’t know who has done the editing, unless you go to the specific drama cover page, after changing the content into the desired language, otherwise you see only the English cover page which only lists the English editors.


It is often difficulty to achieve this balance. One interesting footnote–sometimes the literal translation gives a fascinating and enlightening insight into the mindset and culture of native speakers from countries other than our own. As an editor, I am prone to leave some translations as they are–Aigoo–we just intuitively know the meaning and it can’t be said better.