Defeated by the Translator

by : Name Withheld
(Tokyo, Japan)


I received the two submissions given below for proofreading yesterday at about this time. Although I was puzzled, I did spend some time trying to make the text understandable and grammatically correct and I thought at one point that that I had produced "fair" proofread and edited text.

The problem is that I didn't want to do just a "fair" job, I wanted to do a "good" job. That was the point when I decided that I had been defeated by the translator. It appears to me that the text of both pieces has been translated all at once by one of the language translating computer programs (Alta Vista Babel-Fish, Google and others.) These programs can be useful at times to help with word choice and sometimes even common idioms but are not yet sophisticated enough to produce good, clear grammar and syntax in full text translations.

When I re-read my edited text, I realized that I was trying to impose my own meanings on the writing as I tried to make them read as good English. This was going beyond proofreading and editing. It was re-writing the text and probably changing the authors' intended meaning.

I apologize sincerely for not being able to help you with these but I do believe that I've been defeated by the translator.

Note to Contributor:

If you would like to try translating smaller parts of the text in units, then do your best to make those phrases into sentences, I think we could make some progress.



Some classes became noisy by the whisper of several schoolboys, but became quiet immediately when oneself was careful.


He is a press conference after the cabinet meeting of 13th; if "raise not only the consumption tax but also tax reform, annual revenue reform, and do not elect you, is very rude to the nation". I stated that I hit the big wall as the present yield of taxes (as for the finance), and, as for "the consumption tax tax increase, four years freeze" and the review of the policy of the Hatoyama government which did it expressed recognition that it was necessary.

He emphasizes that I "cannot but be able to touch the tax reform whole that I included a consumption tax" in about "the middle finance frame" which the government compiles by June. Furthermore, I pointed out that the House of Representatives dissolution during the term of office should have examined a consumption tax rate increase in an issue.

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