Thank you so much for opening this thread and bringing this to our attention!!!
I’m serious, Cindy. Unfortunately we have seen many CMs, and VIKI itself, acting against having an English team, and now that we have some examples, like the one you just showed, they will finally realize how important it is to have a TE and a GE alongside the CE!!!
Btw… the original sub… ufgh… gave me goosebumps. Really, what on earth .
I don’t think, that CMs without a TE always think, they don’t need a TE. For my last project as CM I asked many TEs and couldn’t find anyone, all were loaded with work and not available. Over the last years the first thing I do as a CM is to look for a CE, GE, CS and TE, but it’s getting so difficult to find a TE.
IMHO, I think the fingers are pointed in the wrong direction, and at the wrong people (essentially because CMs are not the ones who intrinsically call the shots). It’s not the CMs per se. I shall curb my expressions and not step on toes, hopefully. No offence is meant, at all.
Always wish for the best for Viki and the community, that both will exist/co-exist amicably and synergistically for the long, long run.
Still, I do sincerely and beseechingly hope and wish:
that Viki would aid instead of curb its wonderful community of volunteers, I mean, contributors
that Viki will step up and make the right moves, the much needed ones
that enforcement of rules/guidelines where needed are done, and where not needed, are not enforced upon the community
that transparency be given light so that everyone involved can see distinctly
that we are not “beating a dead horse” again (as in pursuing a lost cause or doing something futile yet again)
Well, if CMs repeatedly just wants a single CE that doesn’t know the source language, you can blame Viki for appointing them. You can blame Viki for the “weird” instructions as well - but while Viki usually ignores whatever input there is CMs are part of this community. Therefore, they’re easier to approach and about the person you can actually ask to change their behaviors.
In fact, all the single editor projects have issues with mistakes. Lately, I’ve been working on another “Single CE” project and I have to point out significantly more to my own team because of inconsistencies such as “Sister XY” switching with “XY” all the time, an Uncle being called “Mr. X”. Maybe this doesn’t really matter in English, but in languages that do differentiate between how someone’s addressed it does. And that’s only the part I can hear after working on CDramas for a few years now as an OL moderator.
What is this about? Being powerful for a second? Provide good work to the audiences? I wonder.
Sometimes I receive requests from CMs or CEs that don’t have a TE and now have issues filling empty segments or OSTs. Seriously, most of these CMs never bothered to look for one. They just want it done fast, Viki says, “oh, you don’t need a TE”, but nobody will ever fill these segments or lyrics. So some of them go to Google or YouTube and get their translated lyrics there. Congratulations, how’s this different from others stealing subtitles? Not to forget that a lot of these translations are very bad.
You want to ask them to disobey and not follow the rules? I don’t think that’s fair.
In my opinion, they’re doing the best they can. Don’t pick the wrong target. Viki is to blame for all this.
Given what’s happened in the past, I think Viki is trying to stop depending on the contributor community. After the segmenters and the Portuguese community, it’s the TEs they’re no longer interested in. No matter how right you are about subtitle quality.
I’m an OL moderator and translating a drama has changed. It used to be simple, but now it’s more complicated. Without a TE, some subtitles make no sense.
I would like to see them at least try to negotiate.
Fe, say they are going to release the episodes to OLs after CE-ing and parallely translation-edit English. So that OLs can decide whether to wait with translation before TEing or proceed with it immediately (and hopefully edit again after TEing).
Also, they should definitely try to negotiate segment editing (A&C) before the release to OLs. Because I can’t imagine any segmenter willing to do that after 10 OL languages have already translated that episode. And, I can’t speak for anyone else, but I hate to translate A&P segments - they are prone to errors no matter which language.
Viki doesn’t always tell CMs not to take a TE. I’ve only had it happen like once because Viki was taking care of TE. On shows where they buy the subtitles and where no one looks at the subtitles, they don’t say you shouldn’t take a TE. On the contrary, I’ve once had it happen that Viki told me I should probably look for a TE for a certain show.
In my opinion, it’s a mix. Some CMs just don’t want the hassle of having to wait for a TE, or they think their CE is fluent enough to manage. Some projects arguably are subtitled (and TEd) well before airing, so it really depends from project to project. In general, a Korean show’s subtitles are more understandable than a Chinese one.
I think it’s a way better to keep our community like it was in the past but things keep in changing. I’m an OL moderator and according to me the edition team of subtitles is as important as CM and segmenters. I’ve worked on projects with release after QC and with release only after TE. Sometimes subtitles don’t make any sense for the 1st case and sometimes we are waiting for weeks for only 1 episode for the 2nd time. So, I think that’s why Viki is sliding for a less depending translation. It’s not the good way in my opinion. It doesn’t matter for me, TE is important and it guarantees good subtitles.
@somejuwels I would assume that we are referring to different languages. Your latest CM projects were Kdramas, it’s well-known that there are hardly any TEs for Kdramas or Thai dramas. However, the situation is a bit different for JDramas and especially CDramas. I’ve been mainly working on CDramas lately, so I do know quite a couple of Chinese TEs. However, they haven’t been joining the project. Just like no TE ever joined the last couple of this CM’s projects. Even if none of the CEs knows the source language.
Previously, I’ve been asked to fill in segments for JDramas, and I was involved in discussions between CEs and CMs or whoever about finding a TE or not. That’s why I dare to criticize this. Maybe it wasn’t specific enough. Regarding Kdramas and Thai dramas, I am well-aware that there are issues finding TEs or Viki even lately told people to refrain from editing anything. After all, Viki has been blocked in Korea and the subtitlers weren’t needed anymore either. So this might be an inevitable development. Regarding Thai dramas, there were always few editors, but there are more and more of these dramas with… well, not the best subtitles. They did improve Chinese subtitles compared to 1-2 years ago, but so far it doesn’t seem like quality assurance bothered much about Thai subs.
Just as mentioned previously, Viki rarely tells you what you mustn’t do. They rather mention that “you don’t have to appoint a TE.” That’s different from disregarding the rules. However, you can argue if saying “you don’t have to” is wise if nobody fills empty segments or if translation are seriously messed up after all.
All of my projects had instructions such as “you can recruit blabla…” This doesn’t feel mandatory and turned out confusing in the past. I’m aware that there were rare cases where they lately told people not to add segments or refrain from editing, but this is rather a Kdrama matter.
I do think we have to differentiate here. Viki’s instructions are an issue, and they might turn out confusing or lead to issues. But not every contributor is a saint. I mean, I understand that we’d rather show how motivated and professional we are to be considered by CMs, but we all know about the common issues or what we could improve eventually. Certainly, we work for free, but many of us are still very dedicated to this. Still, it’s not like there aren’t issues concerning the community. In fact, I do think it’s best to address those openly.
Just yesterday, my team member asked me “Wth is “Plant extracts for a natural approach”?” The reference subtitles hint it’s about “natural white skin through using plant extracts”. So avoiding having a TE here makes me spend time researching reference subtitles in such case. Even though this is not really my expertise either. So it’s rather shifting work and in the end this even is (often) lost to fellow translators who have to deal with this in their own respective language. In some older cases, we sent lists to CEs because we thought it would be great to tell them about issues in the English translations or inconsistencies. However, if in some cases there is no reaction, you may consider doing it again if certain people are involved or just fix your own language in the future.
Personally, I’ve seen great non-native CEs but also bad native CEs. Your native language really shouldn’t matter. It’s been argued before that a native speakers produces more mistakes than someone who was taught the language (and who has a native level in speaking/listening/writing).
I deleted my comment right after posting, so I wonder how it’s even possible to read it and why someone would bother to reply.
I’m sorry, if I triggered you in any way, but that’s exactly the reason why I wanted to review my own comment later.
You can read deleted posts for about 24 hours, and you receive an email mentioning that you were mentioned on the discussion board. As it was deleted, I didn’t make quotations but reflected on the fact, that some things mentioned in the initial post might have been not differentiated enough and therefore required more clarification However, I probably wouldn’t use the term “triggered” to describe my own feelings toward discussions. It’s rather about exchanging arguments and see who can prove their point the best.
Building an English team on Viki includes various aspects such as relationships, actual skills, how fast people are, editing styles…
Regarding English editors, we often have people who claim to know a lot of languages or claim to know English very well. However, it’s rather difficult to really determine these things. You can learn a language for years and the level might not be sufficient. Once, I had a Korean TE who wanted to work on something and even though I had some doubts, I offered them a chance. However, during the drama, I figured that they were not in a position to translate lyrics or understand idioms well enough. Most changes were superficial, if anything. However, these people have supporters who just believe in them, even if you have actual evidence. The way Viki works makes it easy for such people. At the same time, you’ll usually find mistakes if you have a reduced English team while there is a lot of pressure, especially in case of KDramas.
Anyway, this is generally a topic with tons of different aspects, ranging from “why have certain people issues recruiting” up to “is everyone’s style up to date”.
For example, I recall a matter where people translated from source to English and the CE reprimanded them that the English wasn’t up to it and that they have to write full sentences etc. Typically, you’d agree to this. As someone studying East Asian culture, I expected that most of those contributors would now refuse to continue translating after being approached like that (which was indeed the case).