Firms that trade abroad should steer clear of using jargon when communicating with foreign contacts as their meaning will be distorted when literally translated.
The translation business has published a list of some of the most common phrases which make no sense when translated from English into other languages.
For example, “Give me a ball park figure” translates back as “Give me to the diagram of the baseball stadium” in Russian when an online translation tool is used, “Flag it up with me” comes out as “Mark it above by me” in German, and “We need to get our ducks in a row” as “We to need to obtain our duck continuously” in Chinese.
The Translation People spokeswoman, Gail Owen, said that badly translated material can look unprofessional and the meaning may be lost.
“Businesses should write in jargon-free language, if they want to translate a document or email,” she said. “Then they need to realise that a machine-generated translation will not usually translate things correctly, so they may need to seek professional help from a translation service.
“It’s a risk to try to use jargon or to translate things badly, especially if it is translated literally, because it will make no sense and your message will be lost.”
At Today Translations, Our linguists know there is more to professional translation services than mere words. That’s why they come armed with specialist legal, technical, commerical, and scientific translation skills to provide the perfect translation for our clients.