Video about translations goes viral

Translators are a waste of space. A shocking statement, isn’t it? One Norwegian linguist has used this line to spark a conversation after creating the following video and showcasing it on YouTube.

Since being posted on September 1st, Erik Skuggevik’s video has gained an average of 7,000 views a day. However, behind the reversible text lies a serious message: help make literary translators visible. Unfortunately, the hours of hard work that translators put into their craft still often go unrecognised.

As The European Council of Literary Translators’ Associations states, “You’d think books are magically written in all sorts of languages at once. Shakespeare wrote his sonnets in English, but they are read all over the world in Russian, German, Swedish, Catalan…” CETAL are hoping for more creative videos such as this one will help spread their message and are currently accepting submissions for their second annual “Spot the Translator” contest.

Any linguist who thinks they have what it takes to create a profound or humorous video that carries this important message has until September 30th (International Translation Day) to submit their entry. More details can be found here.

The video has been a big hit with linguists online, who have not only thanked Erik Skuggevik but also stated: “Only a translator would think of this!” We’re quite inclined to agree.

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