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Translation vs. Transcreation: Which One is Suitable for your Text Material?
Home Reference & Education Education
By: Charlene Lacandazo Email Article
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There are some instances where clients may ask the translator to translate a text from one language to another, but what clients really wanted is a transcreation of texts. Most people ignore the vital difference between the two, which often results in arguments and disappointments.

But what is Transcreation, anyway?

Transcreation is the process of recreating a source text to adapt it to the target audience. Its a good contribution in the translation process, in making sure that the target text has the same standing as the source text.

Transcreation considers wider aspects than just translation to make sure the adaptation of the text is right and appropriate.

Good translation jobs simply translate meanings and cultural nuances between languages, however, when it comes to transcreation, it requires more than that. In addition, effective transcreation is linguistic art that possesses a great message and emotions that are directly speaking to their intended audience, and thus, it requires deep knowledge of the target culture and high linguistic skills.

Today, the transcreation process is most used by advertising and marketing firms, rather than legal and financial companies. Hence, transcreators are becoming an integral tool in releasing campaigns and advertising products, and services abroad. While some people are familiar with how transcreation works, perhaps other people are still surprised and not convinced of the idea of using transcreation rather than translation services.

Recently, there have been many incidents where advertisement translations were misleading or inappropriate, and which have sometimes caused cultural offensive to their target population. Thus, nowadays, most clients prefer to utilize transcreation process, instead of using translation services.

What are the vital differences between transcreation and translation services? Which is more appropriate in adapting texts and rendering message?

Through the process of transcreation, translators go beyond the words to ensure that people will not only understand the intended message of the text, but it also reflects a deep understanding of the emotion of the texts and culture of the target audience.

Both translation and transcreation are vitally significant in multilingual communications. Linguists suggest that translation is an effective strategy for legal documents, official notices, reports, and statistics information. On the other hand, transcreation is more likely influenced by the skill of copywriters, but not all transcreationists are capable of doing their job in any field, and thus, it is important that clients choose whose experience and abilities are well-linked to the type of text material that you need.

It is true that culture always influences how an audience respond to the messages rendered from one language to the target text; and if the texts are not well-adapted to the target text, they will not build trust and establish communication with the audience. Hence, when ensuring that you are communicating to the audience using the right message, using transcreation is absolutely helpful, but when the message is intended to be very formal without embellishments, direct translation is probably what you need.

Charlene Lacandazo works for Rosetta Translation, a leading international language provider specialising in certified translations and interpretation services.

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