Viki Wants Releases Before English Editing

For two airing dramas, I have been asked to release episodes to other language teams, such as Spanish and Portuguese, before we do English editing. Why? The only reasons I can think of:

  1. Spanish and Portuguese viewers are very vocal about subs not being available in their languages immediately!
  2. Such viewers rate a drama as one star, which affects the whole rating for a drama. English viewers question why the rating is so low for a wonderful drama, just due to unhappy foreign language viewers.
  3. Viki cannot fix their rating system; thus, they put the burden on CMs and CEs to release without proper editing.

Why is this very unfair to other languages teams?

Anyone who knows me also knows that I’m really meticulous about the meaning of the subs. I don’t allow any written text which is incorrect. I don’t allow redundancy. I don’t allow plot holes. So I make a lot of edits! I would not expect the OL Teams to have to re-edit all that work!

In my experience with Staff subbers, they don’t segment and sub many signs, lyrics, or anything too difficult for them to decipher. By the time our volunteer segmenters are done with the same episode, it has gone from 100% down to 90-95%. Sometimes, I have seen it as low as 83%. Without adding my editing, there is almost 20% right there that OL Teams must redo.

When you add all the corrections that our TEs must make for proper translation and then my final editing, the OL Mods may be facing a minimum of 50% which they must redo.

I had two CMs specifically ask me to edit the subs to fit the timing of the segments. I do that to help viewers read the whole sub and understand the drama better, but also for the benefit of other languages who normally follow me, not precede me.


I avoid repetitive words which can make it confusing for viewers.
worthyromance | Feb 14
“What shall I do to produce a better job and to attract more fans?”
Viki Staff | Feb 9
“What do I need to do to do a better job and attract more fans?”

TE | Feb 11

  • Send a rescue team.
  • Okay.
    viki | Feb 10
    -Tell them to send reinforcements.

TE | Feb 11
That’s right! Give us the main points.
viki | Feb 10
Yeah, give us some tips.

worthyromance | Feb 12
These five years, every day feels like I’m repeating Grade 12.
TE | Feb 11
But in these five years, every day feels like I’m repeating 12th Grade.
viki | Feb 10
But every day feels like
I’m in 12th Grade.

TE | Feb 11
You haven’t included the five years for your postgraduate and doctorate studies yet.
viki | Feb 11
You haven’t included your postgraduate and
doctorate studies yet.

TE | Feb 11
I know that medical school is tough.
viki | Feb 10
I know medical course is tough.

TE | Feb 11
But I can responsibly say this to everyone:
viki | Feb 10
But I can tell you this.

worthyromance | Feb 12
Without thinking, you separated tissues and severed blood vessels on the autopsy table. (I had to combine two segments because the word order made no sense!)
viki | Feb 10
You separated the tissues
and severed the blood vessels

TE | Feb 11
blood vessel branches, and muscle tissues,
viki | Feb 10
the distribution of the blood
vessels and muscle tissues,

TE | Feb 11
Bow to our Teacher Cadaver.
viki | Feb 10
Bow to our predecessor.

GE | Feb 12
How will you be a doctor in the future?
TE | Feb 11
How would you be a doctor in the future?
viki | Feb 10
How would you be a doctor?

TE | Feb 11
I’ll never be at the operating table for the rest of my life.
viki | Feb 10
I’ll never be at
the operating table.


I feel your frustration @worthyromance. I believe @cgwm808 had a post of similar frustration…


What is a solution to the rating system?

Do not allow anyone to rate a drama until it has been one week since the first episode loaded!

Anyone who has already watched the drama elsewhere can comment in the comments section, but not rate it before it loads❗

Netflix allows no rating system for the public to see.

iQiyi allows up to five stars. They don’t have Spanish and Portuguese so they don’t have this problem. Their comments section is separate.

The first two episodes may be good in English, then the rest of the drama goes downhill. So no one has any business rating a drama until they have watched a major part of the drama! Putting a one-week timer on a drama’s rating system should not be hard. Many dramas don’t allow me to rate until I finish the last episode!

I tried on the Viki app and the app allows me to rate dramas I haven’t even watched yet❗ That certainly needs to be fixed! So much abuse of Viki’s rating system is from people rating dramas that haven’t even aired!

Viki needs a much better solution than Spanish and Portuguese going before origin language translators! The origin languages are Korean and Mandarin.

For the Kdramas I CE, I always have an airing episode released before the next week. Even with two episodes airing a week, my teams get it done before the next week’s episodes. That’s why I like to pick my own teams. I know who will get it done efficiently.

For airing Cdramas, my teams do four episodes per week. I think that’s what most Spanish and Portuguese teams can keep up with anyhow.


@vikicommunity , @amm11, @viki_betatest, @giant_sean, @beefshi, @brendas

Please see opened topic, and above quote. Thanks.


Cgwm’s post is about paid staff coming in to help volunteers sub a drama as fast as possible. I don’t have a problem with that. I can still correct any mistakes done by paid subbers before I release the episode to other languages.

It’s when we can’t correct the mistakes in the subs before release to other languages who must sub mistakes, then the CM must ask them to correct all the mistakes. It makes double work for Spanish and Portuguese.


I completely agree with everything you’ve just said.

For what it’s worth, I don’t thing raitings affect Viki’s decisions all that much. After all, they could just delete the bad, irrational ones if they wanted, although it’s a lot of work. Hence, we all know that ratings should come AFTER the video is released. And it doesn’t matter that it’s an old series or a movie, and many fans have seen it elsewhere. It will not impede them from writing a critique at a later point, when the video is out. However, there is another aspect you haven’t mentioned yet.

As an OL Mod I greatly appreciate perfected English and the ease of understanding.

As I mentioned a long time ago, consistently sloppy, too colloquial or illogical English makes me stop so many times, that in the end I spend 2-3 times LONGER translating the same series, because I keep checking something or I have to think about the true meaning of a sub in that context. Or, if I’m frustrated enough, I quit for the day and go watch something instead.

But a perfected English (not just a good one) makes me so motivated to continue to finish a part of an episode, and then the next one, and finally the entire episode. I fly through it, rather than struggle for days. That also makes me eager to start the next episode as soon as it is released, even though it might be a working day and I am tired from work. Because I know I can do it easily.

Yes, an excellent English as a source language is often a key motivator for OL mods.


They are digging their own grave. It’s an insult to English editors and it’s certainly not helpful to OL, other than giving them the chance to fill up their episodes with the right percentage of subtitles so that they can move on to the next project. What quality those subtitles are has become completely irrelevant.


I’m not surprised by this topic but most by the fact that this request was made for specifics languages. According to me, the most important here is that they ask to release episodes before editing work. It’s non logical. I’m a French moderator and recently CM I’m working with say that episodes will be released just after QC and before TE or CE. I’m sure that it’s a new rule from viki and I’m surprised by it. When I’ve began to work as a volunteer on viki 10 years ago this rule was the way to make sub (QC > release > TE/CE > info to OL that edit is ended > OL modify they subs). Then as the time pass, CM ask that editing process has to be before release to have a better English version. It’s logical and TE/CE work is very important. Nowadays, CM apply this new rule but let OL the choice to translate after QC or after TE/CE (I’m happy to have the choice). I’m still waiting for TE/CE work because I know that subs will be better and more suitable. It’s already hard to translate into another language when you have to take care about particularities of English and the other language. But if you add no TE/CE before translations it’s so much harder. And OL editors will have a hard time : 1 edit after translation + 1 edit after TE/CE. On my teams I put 2 editors and and even with them, some mistakes are still there (nobody is perfect). So with this new (old) rule I’ll have to put 3 editors ? 1 edit after translation + 1 edit after TE/CE + 1 final edit. I’m for the classical way to work on subs : QC > TE/FE > OL release.


If this rule is implemented, and we can do nothing about it, there is only one way: not to edit OL before English editing is complete. Let the translators translate as best they can, so the viewers will stop whining, then wait for the English editors to finish, and only then do the OL editing. Thus you will have editing only once.
I see no other solution.

Viki won’t even know whether this is happening or not, because,as you said, they don’t care about the quality.


It’s clear that Viki doesn’t car about the quality. Your suggestion of the way to edit OL is well but it’s hard to let translations without any edit. Even after the 1st translation. Translators make their best but they can’t see every mistake so 1 edit is needed. Wait English editing to edit after OL translation is not efficient for the quality. It’s only according to me. I know that some other language or moderators don’t care about this and just want to complete %.


You’re right that it seems clear that Viki isn’t overly concerned about the quality of the subtitles or at least feels that any subtitle is better than none because even the quality of English pre-subs can be all over the map, from decent to truly horrible. I shudder to think how OLs will translate from those really terrible pre-subs, but again, I think they believe that anything is better than nothing. Is it really possible that the average viewer doesn’t care that much about quality of subs? Viki must believe so in order to be pushing for this.


We are talking about a day or two.
But even if you want to do a first edit for the very bad things, still you will have two edits, not three!


It’s a binge mindset. The episode is there so why aren’t the subs? Hard part was waiting all week and no subs. Somebody do something about this!

They have the mentality of children.

As long as the subs remotely makes sense, they don’t care for the intricacies of the language. I turned to another streaming service once for a show that was streaming on both. The subtitles were the bare minimum to understand, they didn’t have any extra text explaining puns or nuances. I wanted to watch the show ASAP.

Viki should allow viewers to decide whichever subs they’d like to see. If there’s plenty of people on Spanish or Portuguese teams, it’s up to them if they want to wait for edit or just go ahead from the pressured ‘release’. If they have the manpower and don’t mind editing 3 or 4 times, they can. If not, they can voluntarily ignore the release and wait for the final edit to be done. They are volunteers right? What’s viki going to do, get paid subtitlers or machine translation for those languages? If so, it’d be the same as the English team, they’d just be making edits.

There should be some indication of “pre-subbed, editing in progress, editing done, finalized” for all the languages. I wouldn’t want to watch a show with unpolished subs. How would the viewer find that information out if not posted? The cover pages of shows used to be updated with Episode release for other languages or sometimes they’d have detailed progress charts with translation, general edit, etc.


I don’t think the OL subtitlers will want to translate something that has not been edited. Maybe, this could work sometimes but it could also be a real hassle. :tired_face:
How can you translate something if you don’t understand the meaning?
Then people will complain about bad subtitles rather than no subtitles. :expressionless:


They will likely be a different set of people. The vocal minority of users that complain about subs not being instantly available likely aren’t the brightest bulbs. See? Problem solved!


I don’t think it is just reduced to these languages, as we had these cases before in e.g. “My Lethal Man” and “The Starry Love.”

I think some changes would really have an impact on the other languages’ translation. This example won’t in my opinion. While the one below is entirely different:

However, I have to admit that I was in charge of translating dramas before that were somewhat edited, but had the quality of a drama that has never even seen any editor. In that case, I still had to amend a lot of segments after some belated translation editing. Similar in cases where Viki stated that they did the TE stuff, which wasn’t true (unless they did a terrible job at it).

From their behavior, we can assume that Viki’s main goal is speeding things up. However, they seem to have abandoned the idea of belated releases, and on Heavenly Idol they told the team to wait until Viki segmented and translated things. So Viki spent about 6 hours segmenting. A bunch of volunteers would’ve been faster and happy to do segments from the scratch. Instead, Viki delays things further. What’s the point? Working together would’ve been more effective here. Instead, they keep discouraging segmenters. Segmenting is pure idealism, you gain about nothing doing it.

At the same time they throw in Portuguese and Spanish presubs even though both language communities are large enough to provide subtitles within a very short time. This may result in decreasing the communities.

However, in general, I do think that a good translation can be provided after proper translation editing without having a final editing. However, this depends on the contributors. If the TE avoids logical issues and the other languages’ contributors know some basic formatting, it won’t be a huge issue.
On the other hand, the entire circle is really annoying. Due to moderation limits, we pressure editors and everyone a lot to release about 2-3 episodes per week (I agree 2 is all right, and I like 3 too… but 3 episodes seem to be the new standard). This results in Viki telling us to release without editing or providing presubs in other languages. This results in CMs telling their editors to do everything by themselves instead of having a team. So whoever knows a bit of Chinese, Japanese or Korean should just do everything alone. In the end, this (likely) ruins the shows, the teamwork and maybe even the fun. Just like it can ruin the fun if your CM thinks it’s valid to not touch a drama for 3 months in order to finish the first season. It’s not. In my opinion, a balance has to be maintained. Viki has to care more for shows without any (real) progress, but we need a sustainable solution for live shows.


Not only does viki "want releases before English editing, but on a Taxi Driver 2 I was told that editing of the pre-subbed subtitles will not be allowed and if you look at the team you see there is no English moderator.


In that case I will think twice before taking on such projects as an OL mod.