This Week in Translation Errors

When it comes to bad translations, we believe a little sunlight is the best disinfectant. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some notable translation fails in the news this week.

First, the BBC. The news channel rung in the Chinese New Year with a special broadcast…and a caption fail.

In the Chinese Lunar Calendar, this year is the Year of the Horse. Deaf and hard-of-hearing viewers may have come away with a somewhat twisted view of the celebrations based on the BBC’s subtitle during the broadcast: “Welcome to the year of the whores. People around the globe celebrate.” Read more

English is Second Language for Students in 1 of 9 British Schools

New statistics released last week show that in 1 out of 9 British schools, English is no longer the primary language spoken at home by students.

1,755 schools in the UK (out of 15,288 total) reported that a majority of students spoke English as a second language in the annual schools census, according to the Daily Telegraph.

You could be forgiven for assuming that most of these schools are in London. You would also be wrong.  290 of the schools in question are in the Midlands, 172 are in the North  West region, and 162 are in Yorkshire and the Humber.

These statistics have some people (and politicians, of course) quite concerned. Read more

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