Cultural Sensitivity for Translations: What Points Should Publishers Understand?

cultural sensitivity illustrates culture

Publishers face headwinds if a text is incorrectly translated. Some leaders might rely on machine translations that incorrectly translate a language. Thus, it might cause a cultural issue, offending some readers, losing clients. Publishers can consider these points for cultural sensitivity for translations. 


Translation Without Cultural Context Can Misrepresent Meaning 

Culture gives language context. Translators steep themselves in the values and norms of the culture. Likewise, they deliver content that makes sense to the audience. They understand cultural sensitivity. History gives many examples of literal translations that fell flat on native ears. Besides that, these cultural missteps cost time and money to fix. Rebranding products is an expensive error that publishers can avoid with an experienced translation service. Also, relationships stagger off course when the poor word choice by a translator misinterprets a critical meaning.


Cultural Sensitivity is More Than Words 

Likewise, translation is more than just words. Images and visuals are integral to translations. Logos, graphics, illustrations, and pictures on products need to be culturally appropriate. No one is going to buy products that offend them. Still, examples abound of best-selling products flopping in a new market due to cultural illiteracy. International brands have learned their lessons after putting the incorrect image or translation on a product that offended consumers. Savvy publishers can learn from these mistakes. 


Professionals Understand Cultural Sensitivity 

Still, cross-cultural success means translators prioritize staying on top of current events. Therefore, professionals stay on top of trends for their target audiences. Professionals know what is happening in their countries and cultures where they offer services. This localization of content sells the product. Most importantly, a professional can rewrite the content, so it sounds like it was written in the native language. Transcreation is worth the cost. Moreover, firms know what cultures share and what they do not. Likewise, skilled translators understand the content, the cultural emotion, and the context. Yet, this service takes time to do well.  


Experts Understand Localization 

Therefore, the investment in using expert, native, and local translators are worth it in the long run. Publishers can save costs by not having to redo products due to cultural missteps. Localization ensures products resonate with the intended audience. Still, the push to use machine translation services is great. Yes, AI services have their place. Yet, these poor translations can fail, leading to funny results. Publishers can steer clear of these awkward missteps with human translation services. Besides that, firms help project managers deliver high-quality products on time the first time.


In sum, translations produced without understanding the culture can unintentionally offend customers. Besides that, poor attention to cultural sensitivity results in the loss of sales and pricey rebranding campaigns. So, publishers’ investments in services that use transadaptation, transcreation, and localization will enjoy success. Here at A Pass Educational Group, our translation team has the experience and expertise to translate your content in over 40 languages and with the highest attention to detail. For more specifics, check out our World Languages & Translation page and request information today.

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Who is A Pass?

A Pass Educational Group, LLC is an organization dedicated to the development of quality educational resources. We partner with publishers, K-12 schools, higher ed institutions, corporations, and other educational stakeholders to create custom quality content. Have questions?

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