Moderator advice

False friends are terrible, because, like real-life human false friends, they give you a sense of security, so that you fall even deeper!
But do you understand Italian? I didn’t know.
The most terrible and most numerous false friends are between Spanish and Italian. Really really many and really really terrible.

  • Burro means butter in Italian but donkey in Spanish. (Butter in Spanish is mantequilla)
  • Largo means wide in Italian but long in Spanish. (Wide in Spanish is ancho).
  • Aceto means vinegar in Italian but Aceite is oil in Spanish. (While vinegar is vinagre).
  • Imbarazzo means embarrassment in Italian but embarazo means pregnancy in Spanish. You can guess what kind of misunderstandings can come from that one!

I didn’t know other languages face that because in my language (Arabic) all the moderators have amazing looking spreadsheets easy to access and are pleasant to look and add info to, everyone uses google spreadsheet



That’s how most spreadsheets look like in my language (I’m the one who did this one)
The characters names on the left, some common mistakes to avoid on the right, button references on the bottom of the image and the songs on the down right side.
And then the Parts and subber names and comments down.
And they also have easy to access links that can make others be able to edit it or only view it.


I don’t really, just a few words here and there. But I’m from Croatia, so it comes with the territory to know some Italian. Coastal dialect is full of Italian loan words. Pomidor (pomodoro), šinjorina (signorina), kapula (cipolla), karota (carota) etc.


This might be totally unrelated but I just thought of this after reading your sentence.
In Turkey (country) they don’t call Turkey (bird) as Turkey but they call it Hindi. In Hindi (language), we don’t call Turkey (bird) Hindi (bird) but we call it Peru (bird). And Peru is actually a country.
So, languages when interrelated, get messed up.


This is also unrelated but, in my language, we have different countries that talk the same language (Like UK and US) with different words and accents.
So, it was my first time meeting this woman from a certain country and she said something that means “butt” in my language just to find out it means “neck” in theirs. Every time someone talks about these errors, I remember this story.


Wow love to work in a neat spreadsheets like yours, girl! Too bad I don’t know Arabic. But I swear I have not seen lately a spreadsheet that looks so organized.

I also blame that the CM/Moderators in some dramas, lose control of their spreadsheet, and we have many ppl/subbers that love to write an excess of stuff in these little boxes. I have read personal information like; My light went off since this afternoon, and I wasn’t able to finished part 2 of episode (16) I stopped at minute 12:47. Who the hell cares if you stopped there bc your light went off in your zone? Just add the information of what episode, what part and where you stopped so next person can continue from there.


Thank you! Yes I agree it just overcrowds worksheets unnecessarily


Since I also have some experience now, I’d like to say one also has to be open about suggestions as a moderator.
Mistakes are inevitable, no matter how much attention one pays, mistakes do creep in. So, once one has completed, edited and locked an episode, one should not feel the work is done. One must be aware that there might still be mistakes in the locked subs and should be ready to update or correct the mistake.
Plus, since being a moderator means having most power among the teammates, one should also be reasonable with whatever stuff you’re doing inside/for the team.

It just happened to me today, I was looking for my mistakes in already edited subtitles (you know, looking for loopholes you might have missed, so you don’t repeat the same mistake again). Someone (not the moderator) changed my subs without an appropriate reason. Since explaining in Hindi might not be understandable, I’d go with a Korean sentence “what”.
I wrote “뭐?”, the Hindi C.E changed my sub to “뭐야??”. There’s no difference between both of them, I thought I might actually be wrong so I just asked my doubt to be cleared. I got a reply “I also have lots of projects to do, I can’t go back to these minute details over and over again.”
Another instance, since I am Hindi G.E, I corrected some incorrect spellings of “exactly/to you/to tell” or other words. The spelling I changed to are correct and I can also provide the sources. The C.E switched them back to original incorrect subs, saying the changes are minute, no need to bother over them. How minute you say? Just as minute as the difference between their and there.

I read here,

compiling a list of mistakes you saw might work. I did so too, hoping it might work. I felt somewhere around 20-25 changes were unreasonable. I got their reply “I have a lot of projects, I can’t keep looking back every time at each episode. You need to trust me so that we can work fluidly, the subs are okay and that’s how I have been working here at Viki. You can take 100% charge if you’re better than me.” But there was no reason given for the changes they made.

When I was looking back at my subs, I also deleted the subs I did edit incorrectly.

I did not get a fruitful answer and we are letting the subs as they are without correcting the mistakes. In future, I am going to keep the mistakes to myself and not communicating about the mistakes to Hindi CE.

To sum up, always be reasonable and don’t misuse “I have always worked at/learned from Viki like this”.


You have to know who you are working with. Don’t make a rule to always communicate or to never communicate, because it depends.
If you know that this person is open to suggestions, then you can freely communicate.
But you have to get to know them first. Try pointing out one thing, see how they react, and then decide accordingly.
Yes, it’s tiresome to go back to a locked episode, but on the other hand it bothers me that the viewers will spot those mistakes, so I do go back and revise. And for that precise reason I never take more than one on-air project at a time (well, sometimes there’s an old drama or two on the side, to be done in a more leisurely way)
I am CM and GE on a drama right now, and the Spanish editor has been pointing out some inconsistencies. I asked the TE, I searched online, I found answers, and I corrected what I had to. I am grateful to her for alerting me, because she saved me from giving a bad impression. She’s the sort of person that I would want to work with again. I cherish people like that.

Not everybody is the same.


Yes, I kinda feel working with people who are open to suggestions is best for now. And I need to go with hit and try method to check. Not changing mistakes might also lead to viewers rating the drama correctly.

1 Like

Let me tell you about one example of what I consider a big mistake which I always correct. And it is about a comma.

You can often see in an American English sentence a comma, usually right after the time clause.

The day before yesterday, we played in the park.

I would argue that this comma is grammatically incorrect even in English. And in my language it is definitely incorrect.

Now, there may be people who would say “Why are you deleting that comma from a perfectly correct sentence? You are stealing another persons sub.”

Those people don’t know what they are talking about. Firstly, you can’t steal a sub (a contribution) from another user. And secondly, they haven’t got the faintest idea that, in order to consider a sentence correct, every word, every dot, every apostrophe and every comma must be correct.

Why am I correcting that comma, you may ask.

It’s because I don’t want Croatians reading my Croatian sub to start to get used to the wrong grammar. On top of that it is disrespectful to my Croatian language teachers who taught me better.

So, if you’re a Moderator, you should never undermine the integrity of your language.

Couldn’t agree more. Less ego, more correct subs, please.


Actually in my opinion, I think moderators shouldn’t be working on more than 4 projects at once weather subtitling or moderating. I feel like they give less effort in their projects that way.
I think editing is a hard job that puts pressure upon the editor, an editor should be accurate in the language uses, Grammer, and even the commas. simply going past a mistake because there isn’t time to correct every little mistake is honestly not something I think is correct.
I think your concern over the subtitles and telling your CE what is wrong is good, but it’s their mistals for not looking up your opinion and correcting themselves, let’s face it, sometimes moderators learn things from subtitlers, we are human and we make mistakes, so I think moderators should take the opinion of their team AND take enough projects to make them focus on what they have and not just make them busy.


I agree with you that punctuation is important, but the rules for that are not the same for all languages. There are, for example, some significant differences between Dutch and English punctuation.
Sadly, a lot of subbers just copy the punctuation (or lack of it) from the English subs they’re translating, while they should in fact adjust it to the rules of their own language.


Yes, that’s exactly what happens, subbers just copy the punctuation. It happens subconsciously and it happens to the best of us. I am very aware of the differences between my language and English and therefore I pay extra attention to it.

Likewise, there might be other grammatical rules in my language I have no clue about or I haven’t thought of just yet. And in that case I would like to know and be educated on the subject :blush:

What’s funny is that in my example that comma is actually also wrong in English :yum:

I often feel sorry for newcomers English Editors who say they want to correct all the wrong commas in English. And I’m thinking… it would take an army of you to fix all that has been done :joy:

The best thing we can do, of course, is to try to reduce these mistakes in our own language. Since that is our responsibility. And not feel pressured to feel guilty towards other team members when doing so. Ultimately, the sub created is a joint team effort where all the subbers involved get credit, while the audience gets the best product possible and is completely unaware of the utterly irrelevant fact that the last person who edited the sub is bozoli.


Yesss in my language you don’t really need commas where the english translation is and this is a common mistake.

I was a newcomer in my language and I wanted to edit it, I’m a grammar freak, it’s honestly only disturbing when subtitling but people who watch don’t pay attention to these things apparently


That may depend on the person. If I’m watching something and the subtitles irritate me, I switch to subtitles in another language. :joy:


Yes exactly :joy: Even before becoming an English Editor, my favorite pass-time was correcting my brother’s grammar assignments. When I watch dramas with bad subs, my fingers literally ITCH to get into the subtitle editor sometimes :sweat_smile:


Exactly! :joy:


Ohh…this topic was buried…

This thread has so much information useful for new moderators…