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Re: Proposed translation policy update

From: Masayasu Ishikawa <mimasa@w3.org>
Date: Sat, 03 Jul 2004 18:05:27 +0900 (JST)
Message-Id: <20040703.180527.74724374.mimasa@w3.org>
To: ishida@w3.org
Cc: public-i18n-geo@w3.org


"Richard Ishida" <ishida@w3.org> wrote:

> I have uploaded a new version of the proposed translation 
> policy for i18n docs for comment.
> 	http://www.w3.org/International/2004/06/translation.html
> I have added text based on the policy for translation of TR 
> documents [1] and discussions with other W3C folks.

So I tried to apply these instructions to:


I'd give some feedback from a lazy translator's point of view.

General point:

This document is well written, and if the target audience is
the GEO Task Force participants, it would be just fine.  They
are I18N experts, and they have commited certain amount of their
time to do this kind of work.  For lazy translators like me, I feel
it's just too much.

Most translators are volunteers, they translate W3C's documents
in their spare time.  If they wish to translate an I18N resource,
they would certainly be interested in that topic and making it
available in their native language, but that doens't necessarily
mean they are I18N experts, or interested in other I18N issues.

In other words, they would be interested in translating the *content*,
but would be less interested in "administrative" matters such as
linking between language versions, version management and such.  This
document contains a lot of instructions, each instruction is rather
clear and would be necessary to manage the Internationalization pages,
but combined together, it becomes a long list of requirements which
might be enough to discourage translators to volunteer at all.

Probably I'm just too lazy, but I would guess if the requirements
are longer than one page (on their screen/paper/whatever), certain
people would just give up.  Having clear instructions is a good thing,
but having too many instructions isn't always good.  Ideally
requirements should be minimal.

You could consider splitting the instructions into things that should
be done on translator's side, and things that could be managed on
your side.  For example, adding links between language versions
could be done on your side.  If translators are motivated to do
everything on their side, that's great, but let's not force them
to do everything.

Specific points:

- Wherever you require to add specific text, I strongly encourage
  you to privide a template in various languages, not just English
  example.  For example, adding disclaimer statement should be as
  simple as just copy and paste a template in their language (and
  adjust links, of course).  You don't have to write all of them,
  you could extract them when someone provides a translation.
  Translators shouldn't have to translate the same template again
  and again, or shouldn't have to search through Internationalization
  pages to find a precedent.  That would also ensure consistent
  translations for required text.

- In "Version information", it requires to add the following disclaimer:

    <p id="disclaimer">In the case of a discrepancy or errors in the
    translation, the <a href="/International/english-file.en">English
    version</a> should be considered authoritative.</p>

  But in "Policy" section it also says translators should follow
  the instructions in W3C's intellectual rights FAQ, which requires to:

   2. Prominently disclose in the target language the following 3 items: 
      1. the original URL, the status of the document, and its original
         copyright notice.
      2. that the normative version of the specification is the English
         version found at the W3C site.
      3. that the translated document may contain errors from the translation.

  The above disclaimer would satisfy 2 and 3, but doesn't satisfy 1.
  So in my case I added something like this (in Japanese):

    <div id="disclaimer"> 
      <p>This document is a translation of <a title="Character encodings"
        >http://www.w3.org/International/O-charset</a> .</p>
      <p>This document may contain errors arose from translation.
        The normative version is the <a href="/International/O-charset.en"
        hreflang="en">English version</a>.</p>
      <p><a href="#copyright">Original copyright</a> belongs to W3C,
        as shown below.</p>

  I'm not sure if this is a good way - what's the "original URL"?
  Shall I refer to "O-charset" without suffixes, or shall I refer
  to the English version like "O-charset.en" as the "original URL"?

- As shown above, rather than duplicating the copyright notice,
  I added an ID and refer to it from disclaimer statement.  I think
  an ID should be added in the original version as well.  If you like,
  you could also add something like the following in the head:

    <link rel="copyright" href="#copyright" />

- Whey you require to leave English text intact, such as the copyright
  notice, you should add lang="en" and xml:lang="en" to that part
  even if that's redundant, so that translations can just copy and
  paste that part.

> [1] http://www.w3.org/Consortium/Legal/IPR-FAQ-20000620#translate

Masayasu Ishikawa / mimasa@w3.org
W3C - World Wide Web Consortium
Received on Saturday, 3 July 2004 05:05:30 UTC

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