Viki

Looking for older k-dramas to moderate and use as a training ground


#1

I am an Italian moderator (also English editor, but it is not relevant here). I often have requests from new volunteers who want to join a team and are desperately looking for something. They blindly send messages from Project Finder, usually it’s for some project which is almost completely finished and already has a team. Others write here. I want to help them get a start, but where to put them?

I see that many of them are lacking in language skills and translating skills, have no experience of Viki formatting and other conventions and most of them have no Vikipass. So I cannot possibly put them on my current or upcoming on-air projects, where we need to turn out the episodes quickly and efficiently. There would be no time for me to send feedback, ask them to correct their own subs according to the feedback, then go over them again etc. It would take days to complete an episode, whereas for on-air shows I am always aiming to have it done in 12 hours from release, including the editing!

That’s why I was looking for an older k-drama to use as a training ground where they could safely, in a protective and relaxed environment, do their first steps here, under the guidance of an experienced editor. So that they can improve and become confident. And, in the meanwhile, achieve their 3000 subs to be able to join teams of on-air projects.
Once upon a time there were a lot of these over-long, old k-dramas, from the 2000s, Boring makjang melodramas and lame cliché romcoms to be sure, but who cares, they would do the job brilliantly.
Now all those have lost their license and are restricted for Europe (maybe for the Americas as well).
Moreover, if there is any left, there’s no way to find them.

First I tried the Project Finder. Ha ha, good joke. There is a tab for subtitlers, there is one for Channel Managers, but there is none for language moderators.
So I first tried the subtitlers tab, and looked for those dramas where Italian is at 0%. But no. The percentage is not for the whole drama, but for single episodes which supposedly need translation. So if a drama has an incomplete episode, it will show there, although all the rest have been done. All of these dramas on my search results already had Italian moderators.
Then I tried the Channel Manager tab. The only Korean content I could find was

  1. Old dramas which are restricted or have lost their license
  2. Upcoming dramas, which - as explained before - are not suitable for my purpose (and there’s no guarantee that I’ll get the CM position either)
  3. Variety shows. Translating variety shows is not good for teaching purposes, the dialogue consists in short, easy sentences, and generally it’s a very different format.

The Project Finder being useless (as expected) I turned to the Explore page.
Unfortunately, in the schedule options there are only currently on-air and upcoming. There’s no menu items to choose completed dramas. Which doesn’t make sense from a viewer’s point of view either: many viewers don’t want the stress of waiting every week, they want to binge-watch, and this is only possible with complete dramas.
Anyway.
I chose TV and Korea, but TV also includes reality, drama awards, this sort of thing. There are 1121 shows. How to ascertain which ones of those lack Italian (or any other language) subs? Should I check them one by one?
And the list is organized by… I don’t know. It’s not by alphabetical order, and it’s not in chronological order either. On top there were some shows from 2020 and some from 2018. I tried to go to the last page, and I saw Love With Flaws, which is pretty recent. (Maybe the hidden alphabetical order is the Korean original title, who knows).

How to solve this problem?
@mariliam

If any of my fellow Italian moderators sees this, and you have an old semi-abandoned Korean drama where the subbers have abandoned the project because it’s so lame but you don’t have the time and energy to dedicate to it, here I am!
You can add both me and my trainees as subbers, open the episodes for us and I’ll take care of everything. And don’t worry about the quality, it will be professionally edited at the end.
It will be a win-win situation: we’ll be helping new volunteers to put a foot in the door, so to speak, and your project will advance and eventually be completed.

If any Channel Manager sees this, and they have an old Korean drama (no vikipass) without an Italian moderator, think of me.

Send me a p.m. here.


#2

same here. I also often get mails from newbies, who want to help on nearly finished projects.


#3

If you go to the explore section and you select Korea and tv, you see this in the link:

https://www.viki.com/explore?country=korea&type=series

Now you can add '&year=???

E.g. https://www.viki.com/explore?country=korea&type=series&year=1997

This was the oldest year I could find. Maybe there are shows from even more early.


#4

I had saved that method somewhere but didn’t remember where! Thank you so much!

(But I still don’t understand why Viki has to make it so difficult to find something).


#5

You’re welcome and you can also add the language you want by adding &language=?? and puting the language code at the question marks


#6

@oriya, is there also a way to see whether it’s restricted or not?


#7

I tried it with the year 2014 and there was a drama that I knew was restricted for me. I clicked anyways because you might never know and yes it is still restricted for me :frowning: So I don’t know if there’s a way to avoid restricted drama’s.


#8

@irmar, me too! Thank you, @oriya for the reminder :heart_eyes_cat: The ‘search by year’ element was one of my favorite exploring tools on Viki, I was/am so disappointed they removed it. Although, sadly, most of the older/classic dramas are Viki Pass Plus, so no-go for me. Now, I’m off to search by year once again! :smiley_cat: Thanks, thanks, thanks!


#9

I’d like to add something here because I recently experienced again something I’d call being sabotaged
by VIKI.

The current situation is that there are many beginners who might be able to work on Chinese shows (even newer ones) but that is in some cases a bad option because it’s not a good idea to take (too) many beginners/everyone for any new/on air show.

I’m also a mod of an older movie that is new on VIKI that could be a good way for beginners because it is a single project and a simple one (topic and term wise) but the new beginners can’t work on it because they don’t have QC/VIKI pass standard - only QC/VIKI pass standard volunteers are able to work on it.

So now I either have to find new subbers or wait until the beginners have QC status… it is frustrating for them and me as well because it wasn’t said that it is QC only so I didn’t know it until the new volunteers told me they don’t have access.

I also want to add that I had many beginners in on air dramas last year and it was fine with most of them but it always depends on the person. Some have some kind of natural skill for translating and feel the atmosphere of a story/drama/movie some don’t. I wouldn’t say those who don’t have natural skills couldn’t learn it but they might need much more time and training than others which shouldn’t be done in new on air shows…

So thanks @irmar that you made this post! I was recently thinking about if I should make a post about this topic or not because I got so frustrated when I realized how many stones VIKI puts in someone’s way who’d like to join the volunteering community. On the other hand I can understand every mod who doesn’t want to have beginners or too many beginners for a new on air drama so there should be some kind of ‘learning projects’ as it is available for the segmenters.


#10

Still looking.
I have found a beautiful sageuk, which will be perfect for some of the participants, who have experience but want to take the next step, but may be a little arduous for complete beginners.
An easy romantic comedy or family drama would be perfect.


#11

Hi there @irmar,

Thank you so much for sharing your experience in so much detail! This is extremely helpful and it’s something we are also trying to understand and solve on our end, even beyond Project Finder.

Project Finder is far from finished and we are still working on the next stages to make it useful.

To answer your question, there might be a few ideas we can implement to improve on this particular experience and pain point, but I also want to make sure we investigate further and understand the problem from every angle to make sure we don’t make mistakes like removing something useful or adding something that doesn’t necessarily solve the problem.

I will be following up on this internally to see if we can do something fast to get some practice content for beginners. I’ll update here if we do find something!

Thanks again and do let me know if you have any other questions, feedback or concerns. Happy to continue discussing this further!

Mariliam


#12

Thank you so much, dear!


#13

Out of curiosity, what dramas would you consider ‘easy’ or ‘suitable’ for beginner translators?


#14

French community would also be interested for some training dramas for beginners. Not only “K-dramas” but also Chinese dramas. Having a Chinese drama and a Korean drama would be perfect. Well, even just some places with practice content is a great thing :slight_smile:

Thank you, Mariliam.


#15

I think that’s a great idea for every language


#16

Not historical, not legal or medical, not variety.
Essentially

  1. family dramas
  2. romantic (comedies or not comedies)
  3. social and dramatic series (makjang is okay)
  4. school dramas
  5. films (any kind except medical and legal, I suppose)
  6. silly fantasy web dramas. (I actually don’t think those are very useful: since they are easy, with a very limited vocabulary and basic situations, they might give a false sense of security to a new subber, who might think s/he is more skilled than s/he really is,)

#17

Hey @irmar,

To clarify, when you say:

Are you referring to contemporary fantasy? Or any web fantasy drama?

Thanks :slight_smile:
Mariliam


#18

Let’s say generally silly web dramas. Fantasy or not. It’s just that they very often seem to be fantasy, with dogs that become humans, a star bringing extra electric powers, time warps, cellphones giving private info, touching hands that give info, ugly kind syster body swapping with beautiful mean sister…
As I said, they are not an ideal training ground except for complete newbies, because generally the language is very easy, with short, basic syntax sentences, and the concepts are also very simple. I would certainly want the person to progress on something else after that, because it’s not an adequate test of a subber’s skills - except of course for spelling and formatting, and very basic grammar.
Films and Drama Specials are excellent too, because they are short and the subber can watch all of it and know the plot, the characters and everything.


#19

Gotcha! I see what you mean now. Basically they tend to be very short and simple, giving newbies a false sense of security/accomplishment that a weekly TV drama of 16 1-hour episodes will not.

I will make sure we’re shooting for a weekly TV drama (as well as films and drama specials) instead of web dramas or children’s stories.

Cheers,
Mariliam


#20

Hello! I’m new too, but the thing is I tried this and many of the channel managers are inactive already but the dramas are ‘designated channels’? So I’m unable to start subbing.