German banks’ English web pages investigated/Englischsprachige Webauftritte deutscher Banken untersucht

Beim Übersetzerportal (Nachrichten) berichtet Richard Schneider von einer Untersuchung von Prof. Dr. Dieter Stein an der Uni Düsseldorf über englischsprachige Webauftritte deutscher Banken. (Usprünglich im Handelsblatt vom 3. Juni berichtet; über Artikel auch anderswoonline verfügbar.)

Prof. Dr. Dieter Stein, of Düsseldorf University, has investigated the English used in the websites of German banks. His conclusions, as reported by Richard Schneider of the Übersetzerportal from an article in Handelsblatt, are convincing, although he is German, but presumably he had native speakers in his team. Points criticized include obviously word-for-word renderings of the German and sentences that are too long and heavy and full of slightly outdated formal expressions. This is a great danger, since German texts tend to be a bit more formal than English ones, and translators may want, mistakenly, to preserve the style, or the client may insist on it. Richard Schneider comments on the problems of translating into a foreign language – especially this kind of text, I would add.

I agree with Richard Schneider that it’s probably a mistake on Professor Stein’s part to assume these texts were translated by secretaries.

The article can be found elsewhere online.


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