Machine translation from Viki


Hello Glykeria,

Apologies for the late response. I contract locally, often using propitiatory and/or closed sourced programs. However some of the online ones are YouTube (previously mentioned), MTurk, CrowdSurf, Upwork, & Rev are the online ones I know. The last four are paid positions and usually far less interesting to caption.



Les sous titres générés par des bots sont juste incompréhensibles et j’en ai lu. Je soutiens toutes les équipes de bénévoles français qui aiment ce qu’ils font et nous le partage.

The subtitles generated by bots are just incomprehensible and I read. I support all teams of French volunteers who love what they do and we share it.


I first got on viki because I love watching dramas and because of the quality of the subtitles.
I then discovered that I too, could contribute to help people understand what is said in dramas and make it enjoyable for them.

I spent many hours on viki translating and doing my best to make subtitles of good quality so I’m honnestly not happy knowing that machine translations will now be trusted to do that.
Machine translations are not reliable. They often use a word for word translation which affects the meaning of the text, making it unintelligible. And I really believe it will negatively affect the user experiences.

If the problem is the absence of activity on a channel then using machine translations is clearly not a solution.


I widely believe the most appealing thing about viki it’s the community of volunteers that keeps it running, the opportunity to interact in a worldwide level allows for people to connect and bring attention to different audiovisuals in the platform. In fact viki’s quote is ‘‘Powered by fans’’. Bringing down communities that surely brings engagement and therefore economic gain for the platform in the long run is not an smart move.


I totally disagree that translations of dramas are made by automatic translators and not by people. I make Latin languages like French, Italian, Spanish, Prtoghese and others have various interpretations on various words that can be translated well only by people who speak or know the language well. I hope you can reconsider.


Subbers and translators work hard to make our subs so the fact that Viki wants to change the French subtitles to autobot generated just degrades the work and work ethics of all the volunteers and also shows that Viki isn’t trying to find other subbers to help them.


I have to admit that the ‘‘machine translation’’ although is doing good on the ‘‘subs been there on record time’’ is lacking on the most important part which is to give accurate translation in some dramas.

What’s so odd in all this, that some dramas are translated with good quality subs in them, but some dramas are really terrible so I wish I knew the answer to this situation that leaves me perplexed. I was doing subs in a drama and every other English subtitle was terrible not even bad, but terrible. I don’t understand what’s going on here bc it’s the same language (Korean to English) so why is this happening here?

I already know the ‘‘bot’’ does extremely poorly when it comes to Spanish subtitles, so I can imagine the mess with French, German, and other more difficult language(s) to translate. I’m wondering how they’re holding up since I don’t see complains in the discussion thread. about the subs in their language.


Having immediate translations, even of a lower quality would probably quiet the people yelling in the comments while I watch Chinese drama. I imagine these same people are pressuring Viki for immediate translation, particularly subscribers that don’t bother reading what they are signing up for (the removal of commercial interruptions / ads). Additionally, many people don’t realize the shows are subtitled by volunteers. Or so I presume my the overall attitude of subscribers in the comments ^.

It seems simple enough to allow users to toggle between vikibot and volunteer subtitles. Just add a switch in the settings. Maybe a radio button that would appear when subtitles were toggled on within the (cog icon) control settings, and would default volunteer created subtitles when available, if not select vikibot.

I think this would be an effective way for vikibot to grow as a backup plan for un-subtitled shows reducing the frustration of their subscribers, while having the opportunity to learn from user submitted subtitles & continue to improve their service. :slight_smile:

Ah, and for reference, I’m a paid subscriber, not a volunteer. I very much appreciate the care put into translating shows. When I watch a Chinese or especially those with Taiwanese Hokkien mixed in, I don’t understand a lot of what I’m hearing, and even what I can translate lacks depth and understanding of cultural context. I appreciate your contribution. 谢谢你的努力!加油!


Yay the French bot subs are removed on Sassy Girl :slight_smile: Don’t know of how many drama they need to remove them but I just received the PM from Viki :slight_smile:

And having subs and change them later is not a good idea, it’s faster to start from scratch then do the editing. I usually segment a part in like 20 minutes but when I have to edit it, it once took me more then an hour per part. Same goes for subbing I guess.


The same goes for “Age of Legends” :slight_smile:


I just had a new subber in my team and usually I edit the parts from Newbies asap in order to give them a feedback. So I went over the subs and I was totally irritated. Although the German skills were on a high level, there were some stupd mistakes, no difference made between singular and plural, strange interpretations of terms and this newbie switched for formal to informal speech within one sentence. I was immediately reminded of the French bot with the interpretation of “Honey” to “miel”.

Because I got suspicious I asked around in the German community and someone gave me the hint of the deepl translator. So I checked all sentences, which contained more than 4-5 words and - surprise! - this subber copied them 1:1 including all mistakes.

I don’t know, if the Viki bot is on the same level as the deepl translator, but I’m editing right now this mess and I can overwrite almost every second senctence. I don’t need this experience twice, so I hope I’ll never encounter real bot subs.



Thank you for sharing your experience with us bc it shows others this is not only happening to me. I think you will encounter these with newbie or experienced subbers more than once, as long they continue to copy 1:1.

You still have to check and edit as much as you can (I know it’s hard work and I know you always do) but in order for you to maintain the quality in your subs in your language, that’s the only way to avoid that mess to stay in your subs.

I feel that the ‘‘vikibot’’ ‘‘deepl’’ or ‘‘Google translate,’’ it’s all the same thing and it’s just giving some moderators/editors, more work to do (not all of them bother to edit the work unfortunately in Spanish subs I see not much editing) But I know in the long run, they will end up doing all ‘‘machine/artificial intelligence mode translations’’ in the dramas with this ‘‘new’’ system more viewers are praising how fast the subs are in the drama, and overlooking all the mistakes it has in the subs (I did see only one complain about bad subs in a comment section)

In my opinion, they must be deleting those kind of comments bc some subs are really terrible/incomprehensible to read. I also see a lot of moderation going on in the comments sections (my comments has been removed several times). They are taking the right for us to freely give our opinion, to hide what’s really going behind their actions.



I already encountered someone using deepL to translate into French, and I can tell that the bot is far worse than deepL translations (in any case for French).


And the worst part is that Viki doesn’t do a thing when you report someone. Instead they keep enabling them and when you send them a PM to ask why they do so because you reported the person weeks ago they will only tell you they are behind. And tell you can create a follow up or something like that. So I bumped my report again this week and hopefully it ends up higher in the pile because this person I reported sure is on subbing spree on various projects.

They want us to report abuse but when you do…


Why don’t you report them to the channel managers of the shows they’re doing that in? They can just remove them from the team. I am sorry if you may have answered that before. ( too many messages, too lazy to read :sweat_smile:)


I did notify CM’s when I saw it happening, they all reported the user too. But still Viki doesn’t do a thing… It’s not my job to keep spying on that profile to see where the user is abusing now. (Hops from one project to the next)

If Viki staff reads this: Please deal with #737252 today, thanks!


It’s funny that they report but still keep them on the team. There’s a very cute little x button next to every contributor on the manage team page. Can’t understand why don’t they just click it and poof! No more abuser. :slight_smile:


All CM’s kicked the user out but you cannot simply delete the work of an abuser because then you delete work from people who didn’t abuse as well.


@dudie Aha! I am sorry I misunderstood you. I thought they let them continue working even though they know they’re abusers. Sorry! :sweat_smile::sweat_smile:


Yes, I reported this user immediately, but nothing happened.