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Which dialect to use when translating to English

Is there a preferred dialect to use when translating articles into English? The flag suggests US English, but the top entries in the translation pop-up are usually UK English. Or should we just pick our own dialect and let the biggest team win?

May 18, 2013



A mix of them would most likely be the best, or I'd go with American-English. Why? Well, most UK's understand American English better than Americans do British-English, as well as in general American English is more common on the web.

For example don't call fries chips if you can help it simply because Americans may not get the connection as easily. Meanwhile most Uk's would have no issue, at least no significant one.

However with words such as color/colour, it doesn't matter too much one way or the other.


I worry about this when translating Wikipedia articles. Their official guidance says that both forms are acceptable but should be consistent within a given article. I've noticed in articles I'm working on that we're using a mixture.

Could Duolingo add a way to flag which dialect is being used for a particular article? (This could be set by the uploader or the first translator to work on it, maybe...) Or there could be a final stage where someone proofreads it in English and adapts the style.

I have to say that as a Brit, even if I'm consciously trying to write in American English there may be differences in spelling/wording that I'm just not aware of, or don't come to mind, so maybe having someone adjust the final draft of the article is preferable.

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