Posts Tagged ‘translation’

img_2424.jpgThat’s right: Facebook is now available in Spanish. At the login screen, there is now a button in the top right corner of the page where you can select English or Spanish as your preferred language.

Facebook describes itself in Spanish as “una herramienta social que te conecta con gente a tu alrededor.” This is a faithful translation of the English description that says, “Facebook is a social utility that connects you with the people around you.”

Reading the Facebook blog, I found some interesting information on how the creators of the site developed the new page to accurately represent the Spanish language.

In a move reminiscent of Wikipedia, Facebook allowed users to translate parts of copy found on the site and then had users vote on which ones they thought were best through an alternate version of the site.

It then hired professional translators to do the same work, editing and refining the “strings,” as well as developing resources like glossaries and style guides. However, the users completed translating all of the “strings” in under a week.

According to the Facebook blog, “We’ve found that Facebook users are incredibly passionate about finding just the right wording to express Facebook in their own language.”

I must applaud Facebook’s choice to utilize the skills of its users to develop content. As more social media make their services accessible to speakers of other languages, I hope that they will employ similar tactics to get the highest quality results.

Facebook is setting a great example of what will be happening for many companies in the future, and of how to do it right.

More translations are on their way, with the next being French and German.