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What do you do with my translations?

What do you do with my translations? Given to google translate? Or directly to the site admins? Or you just store them?

September 17, 2012



@giodec "i didn't want it to become kinda philosophical discussion." Seriously? We both know that's exactly what this entails. Ultimately none of us will know unless Duolingo staff spells it out precisely; however, their Terms are fairly concrete, as is usually the case, and there is probably good reason for that since they do have investors.


@bclark yes, seriously. My first question was "what are you doing with the stuff we're producing?", I regard it as a practical question. I don't want their business plan, I just want a statement with their policy or stats about how the program works or an explanation of the basic criteria of selection. Duoligo looks just like a magic mechanism to me. Only while discussing I realized that all my questions have lot to do with users participation, but that's a wider issue. Maybe that's not the right place and I should post my reflection on the blog.


The most funny point is that we translate TO English now. I believe the need of translation FROM English into other languages is much bigger, but of course we beginners don't have enough skills for that.


I think it doesn't. I'm not translating the German Wikipedia although I'm studying German. I'm asking where can I see the duolingos product, the product of all users effort. When I click on google translate a machine translates for me and I see its output. What about our job? Furthermore, if they are not making our product public and free for everybody (like google does) are they giving it away for money? Or maybe just storing it? Will they sell this content in the future? Or this stuff is just a huge (and fun) sociological experiment?


giodec, the video answers that. Basically some (for profit) companies pay to have translations done and we get to learn a language while collaborating on document translations. I think that is a pretty good trade. Someone from Duolingo will have to confirm whether or not this is still the case, but I believe it is. See also: http://duolingo.com/#/terms


I think it's totally unclear. Terms or use only say "you don't own what you do here", but my point is, who are they selling the content to? If they are selling it at all. Nobody on duolingo knows that. Isn't it?


Does it matter if we know what the content is or who their clients are? Surely the point is to learn the language, and the benefit is that we don't get charged. As long as Duolingo are translating content that is ethical, that we as translators do not disagree with, then I don't see the problem.


It matters for me, I could really translate Wikipedia, instead i'm here translating for Duolingo, therefore I would like to know what these guys are doing with my job. Maybe we could have a stake in the decisions, a formal one, not just a "question section" as we have now. Or at least know how the process works. Does it sound so crazy?


I don't understand what's unclear. If website.fr decides one day that they want their content to be in English, they pay a translation service to translate the content, and if they like the result they post it at en.website.fr . Duolingo is a translation service. It just seems like they don't have many paying clients yet, which is why they're so focused on translating public domain stuff. As a side effect of this, most of what we're currently translating already exists in English, so there's no reason to post it anywhere. What I'm hoping they'll do with it is use it to sell their services to a site with some actual interesting, original content.

I'm not exactly sure what's going on with the non-Wikipedia clients, but my theory is that the translations aren't currently good enough to post. Duolingo must have worked out some deal with them, wanting to have different types of articles but knowing it would be a while before the output would be up to standard. But based on my understanding of copyright, content from another website still belongs to that website after it's been translated, so it's up to them what gets done with it.


@anomalocaris nothing its unclear, I'm aware of copyright laws, i read duolingos terms and conditions and all this stuff. What I would like to see from duolingos staff is a little bit more transparency. You say "seems like they don't have many paying clients" and "worked out some deal", I would like to know without any doubt if they are doing any deal, and of which type. Your suppositions are very likely to be true, I agree, but its not a clear statement, for instance on the official blog, that says "Our policy is that and that, we made a deal with this guys, but we're we didn't start the real job yet, that's our plan..." I want something that I can read, criticize, embrace or whatever. Awareness needs knowledge and knowledge requires transparency. All I'm feeling now it's trust, nothing more. I hope now i made it clear, i didn't want it to become kinda philosophical discussion.

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