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The English of most would-be translators is awfully poor. Few Japanese can actually read English accurately.

12 Comments

Kotaro Shibata, a publisher and translator who teaches translators at his company ID Corp. (Japan Times)

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He obviously isn`t teaching the translators very well then, is he?

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eh, English is overrated anyway. Translators should focus on German if English is too difficult. Americans should be able to cope with that at least.

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And I thank their poor English for putting food on my table.

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Met this guy yesterday.

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The truth is that Japanese can not read english, that's why when they go abroad they can not express their selves. Is ok to learn Japanese, is their mother tongue, BUT in science and technology the official language is english. In Japan who can speak english? Well, usually University professors, and few people, why? Simple, Japanese people don't want to study absolutely nothing, therefore, they don't want to study languages. In my lab only few japanese people can read their own newspaper, surprise? well read the statistics in the Ministry of Education.

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The reason is the lack of instructors who've been abroad for the pratical language experience. Most Japanese teachers of English never go to the uSA, England, or anywhere else in the English-speaking world: they learn all of their trade right here in Japan. Language learners can "book-learn" all they want, but until they have the chance for pratcial learning, they will never truly learn the language....

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dludenar

It`s themselves......Not thier selves.

and It`s o.k to learn Japanese .....Not Is o.k to learn Japanese

and It`s their mother tongue.......Not Is their mother tongue.

You need to learn to write, I`m sure if they read your writing they will be confused.

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Yup I think the Japanese have a poor standard of English when compared to other cities in the regions in the region, namely, Singapore, Hong Kong, Korea,

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What is a "good standard" of English? English English, American English, South African English, Australian English, Singapore English ................ The English can't define "good English" as English is a living langauge that is changing all the time. It is totally abitary with little snobby groups always pushing their views of what "good English" is. The dominant groups in education come and go with each group trying to inflict their warped views on the English speaking world. English has now been so degraded even English teachers who have been taught to write in short sentences can no longer understand the written English of their grandparents written in long sentences. Adding to the confusion are English "teachers" who do not understand simple concepts of English, like the use of prefixes or suffixes and tell students they are wrong because "they the teacher" can not find the word in a dictionary. The quote should have read very few people can read English accurately, because a lot of English speaking English teachers do not understand English that well. You can not attack the students when the teachers are at fault and comparing Japanese with speakers from countries that were previous English colonies proves little. Japan has some very good English speakers, I was very impressed by some high school students in Hokkaido their English speaking skill and comprehension was better than some expensive private schools in England and their teacher was Japanese. I do however understand the frustration of Kotaro Shibata at the poor educational level of students.

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Well I don't care about the average Joe. But translators should be able to do a decent job. I've seen jimaku wrong on some movies like 7月 translated as June. Now that is really bad translating for something so simple.

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And I thank their poor English for putting food on my table.

Amen to that, my friend.

Met this guy yesterday.

And you didn't think to do your translator friends among the JT readership a favour by assassinating him due to the threat he poses to their livelihoods? :-)

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