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The Interpretator

Pros and Cons of Translation and Interpreting Facebook Groups

Posted by rpospina on March 29, 2016 at 9:45 PM

A recent experience after posting a simple question in a Translation and Interpreting (T&I) Facebook group, has inspired me to write this post. I wanted to share my 2 cents in regards to being part of (and making use of) these online forums.


Pros:

  • Everyone is on Facebook. It's a great tool for networking purposes and for T&I professionals, because of the diversity of members from all corners of the worlds, if you post a question you will get a plethora of answers from which you can select the most suitable for you.
  • Staying current with industry-related news and events. In my experience, I've learned first-hand from some of these groups whenever upcoming events are taking place, a new regulation is being implemented and other location-specific issues are going on.
  • It's a fast, almost real-time avenue to communicate with others; it doesn't matter if you are working on something at odd hours of the night, chances are you will be able to get an almost immediate answer to your post.
  • You can share documents, organize events, send direct messages to other members of the group.

 

Cons:

  • Everyone is on Facebook; this means that people from different parts of the world will contribute. If you post a question about terminology or how to proceed under a specific situation, you will get many answers from people that work in parts of the world where vocabulary and standards may be different from the ones you need to abide by.
  • When you post a question, especially if it's about terminology, you will get so many different suggestions that it may be hard at times to get a clear answer.
  • Negative and abusive comments. It looks like some translators' favorite pastime is to find errors in other people's writing. If you have a typo or misspell a word when you post something, you will most likely be hammered in the comments section. This can be a big distraction and discourage future participation within the group.
  • Group features are underutilized. Unfortunately, most groups don't share events or have and interactive and constantly updated bank of documents (like glossaries, lists, etc. which could be quite useful for the T&I professional

These points are only based on my personal experience and are not intended to give a full overview of Facebook groups. Bottom line is:
 
  • DO become part of a professional Facebook group
  • DO take your time to be selective and find those groups that are more in-line with your area of expertise.
  • DO contribute in a positive way
  • DO NOT engage in negative or unprofessional comments
  • DO NOT use the group as your first go-to point of reference when in doubt about terminology or regulations.

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Categories: Translation, Interpreting

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