Don’t Rely on Electronic Translation

After running across some fairly amusing examples of what one man has termed “Chinglish” (that is, signs or labels that have been translated into English, usually poorly), I decided to see whether translation software may have been at fault. So, I popped into Google, found their free translator, and translated some English phrases likely to be found on signs.

First, I translated “Wet paint. Please do not sit on the bench” into Chinese. I then switched the mode to “Chinese to English,” and re-translated it. What did I get? “Wet paint Please do not have to become judge.” Hmm…I think I may have located the culprit.

I decided to try one more, the relatively common phrase “Keep out of reach of children.” When translated back into English, the result was “Stays out of a matter to achieve the child.”

What is the moral of this brief story? Don’t rely on electronic translation…


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