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I've been tasked with getting some of our website translated into Spanish and Chinese. We had some pages translated into Spanish several years ago, but since multi-lingual was not part of our workflow, the content on those pages quickly became out-of-date and were just recently removed from the site.

Do any of you have pages translated to other languages? Do you use a 3rd-party service to do it, or someone on campus with those skills? Or an automated service like Google translate?

For those of you that translate pages, how do you make sure those particular translations are updated when the English version changes?

Thanks!

Mark

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Given a relatively small volume of pages, it is probably best to handle this manually, ensuring that your workflow triggers a translation when the English version of the page changes. With this approach you can use either local translators, or source ones working specifically with higher education, which is what I would recommend.

A more fully automated alternative, if you have higher volume or very frequent updates, is to use a service like Lingotek (http://www.lingotek.com/) who automate the process of sourcing your translations. This may also integrate directly with your CMS.

There are no circumstances where I would recommend using machine translation tools like Google translate for this type of work, as a poor translation actually will set back your marketing and communication efforts in your foreign language market a great deal. You are better off sticking with English that posting poor-quality Spanish or Chinese.

Hope this helps – Dan

Note: If you decide to take the manual translation approach and are looking for Chinese translation resources, feel free to contact me off-list at dan@socialchina.ca. SocialChina Communications is a start-up I am mentoring that specializes in Chinese language social media and web campaigns for North American higher education, so they might be a good fit for your project.

Thanks Dan--this is helpful. As we evaluate options, I'll let you know if we'd like to pursue the SocialChine route.

--Mark

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