Translation of literary titles[edit]

Do we have policy on the random translation to English by Wikipedians of foreign film titles, for example, where articles are created under such names rather than under the original titles? Wouldn't we be taking liberties along the lines of Wikipedia Invention by creating an article about a movie called "Violence" when the Swedish title is Våld and it has only ever had that name IRW? --SergeWoodzing (talk) 08:33, 27 August 2022 (UTC)[reply]

That isn't a matter of WP:MADEUP, which deals with creating articles about made-up things. It's simply that the title is wrong. An article about a film that hasn't been assigned a title in English (if you've established that it hasn't been), if otherwise valid, should be moved to its original title. The original title should be used in the body of the article as well; a literal translation can be given in the lead sentence. In addition, the redirect that now appears under the original article title should probably be taken to RFD if there's no evidence that the film has ever really been known by that in reliable sources. Largoplazo (talk) 16:39, 27 August 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you for agreeing basically. Still a bit confused. Follow-up questions:
  1. Couldn't a film which does not exist, e.g. a Swedish film called Violence at least liberally be considered a made-up (non-existent) thing?
  2. How would one go about establishing the fact that a film hasn't been assigned a certain title?
Best wishes --SergeWoodzing (talk) 15:22, 28 August 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Wasn't clear if you were talking about foreign film names as the title of an article, or mentioned in the course of some other article. If it's an article title, then the applicable portion of title policy would be WP:Article titles#Foreign names and Anglicization. Mathglot (talk) 17:34, 28 August 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you, but I thought I wrote here quite clearly about foreign film titles (above). Do we create articles on English Wikipedia and name the articles with otherwise unknown translations we have done ourselves of foreign film titles, or do we use the original foreign-language title of the film? WP:Article titles#Foreign names and Anglicization covers exonyms and such, but does not cover film titles or books. If a French book, known only in France, Canada and Haïti, is called La Vie, do we create an article about it on English Wikipedia and call the article Life or The Life, as we please, though the book is not known anywhere by that name?. I hope this is clear enough now. --SergeWoodzing (talk) 10:22, 1 September 2022 (UTC)[reply]
WP:CRITERIA and WP:COMMONNAME should cover this; as an example where an "original title" is the article title, see L'Atlantide (1932 film): there seems to be no commonly used English title for it, so the original title is used. Lectonar (talk) 10:44, 1 September 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Thank you, that's what I thought. --SergeWoodzing (talk) 11:01, 1 September 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Sorry, but you aren't being clear. If a film doesn't exist, then how does the matter even arise of whether the title given to the fake film is an English translation of a nonexistent non-English original title that the nonexistent film doesn't have because it's nonexistent? If you're saying that there's an actual film whose title isn't in English and the problem is that someone listed it under a made-up title, then the film is not made up, it exists. These are two different, and unrelated, cases. Which one are you inquiring about? If it's the former, then the title of the article is irrelevant: the article is subject to deletion whether its title is in English or Laotian or nothing more than 85 dollar signs. If it's the latter, my answer's above. Largoplazo (talk) 11:24, 1 September 2022 (UTC)[reply]
Film exists, and is notable for an article, but not under a made-up title in English. Film "La Vie" can exist with title in French. Film "The Life" might not exist as so titled even if someone creates an article by that name for the film "La Vie". Marilyn Monroe existed under her original name and her later name. A woman exactly identical to her under the name of Vermalia Schmidleft did not exist even if someone calls her that on Wikipedia claiming that she was Marilyn Monroe. What isn't clear? --SergeWoodzing (talk) 13:50, 2 September 2022 (UTC)[reply]
If a valid article was created under a title that is wrong for whatever reason (whether made up, based on a misunderstanding, not the best title under WP:COMMONNAME), we move it to the appropriate title. We don't call the article "made up" and delete it.
If an article already exists under the correct title, then the article may be deleted as a duplicate article under WP:CSD A10. However, if it includes content that would be suitable for the original article but that the original article doesn't already contain, it ought to be merged into the original article. Largoplazo (talk) 16:48, 2 September 2022 (UTC)[reply]

English translation for international sailing race[edit]

is there anyone that could translate the following page on an international sailing race into English? Silverinhos (talk) 09:37, 16 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Hi. This isn't the place to request translations. See the options given on the project page that this talk page belongs to, specifically the part at the shortcut WP:TRANSLATETOHERE. Largoplazo (talk) 14:15, 16 January 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Handling templates from the source language article[edit]

Is there anything to be said about dealing with the templates in articles one plans to translate from another language's Wikipedia (for example, whether Wikimedia has tools for that, or recommendations for going about it) and, if there is, is this page a good place to say it? Largoplazo (talk) 01:49, 4 June 2023 (UTC)[reply]

@Largoplazo:, this type of issue has long been on my back burner. I also don't know where the right venue is (possibly WP:Request template, if that's is a solution]]), but since we're both here, we might as well start here.
First of all, can you clarify if you are talking about templates in foreign wikis that have equivalents here, perhaps under a different template name? Or, do you mean templates in other languages that don't exist here? The latter case is one of my pet peeves when doing translation, and I just took one baby step to resolve that for French translators.
French articles, especially about historical topics, often use the fr:S- template to indicate centuries, which are usually expressed in Roman numerals in French (but rarely in English). We'll probably never catch up with the insane number of century templates in French, but I struck a blow for fr→en translators by creating template ((Nth century)) just now, and adding a redirect to it from ((S-)), which is the same name as the French template, and also defined it as "subst only". This means that anyone translating a French article littered with French "S-" templates (like fr:Liste des chronologies thématiques or fr:6 septembre), no longer has to deal with it: they can just port it over and forget about the templates, instead of having to find and replace them all.[a] Where before, every occurrence would've give you a red-linked S- all over your English article, now it just properly indicates the text that ought to be there: eg., ((S-|XVIII)) → 18th century, and because of the "subst" setting, AnomieBOT will come around within a few hours and subst it, leaving "18th century" in the text, and no trace that there was ever a template there.
If this is something that has bothered you as well when doing translations, then it probably bothers lots of others. I think this could be the germ of an idea that would benefit translators from multiple languages, and we should think how to manage it, and where. I'm thinking of a subproject, or Task force, where we'd maintain lists of the "pet peeve templates" by language, and then figure out which ones could be dealt with in some way. Perhaps a subset could be dealt with in the way I just did for French ((S-)), by defining them here, then making them disappear as subst-only. We should probably start by figuring out what the greatest offenders are, and if there's any pattern across languages, or if it's pretty individual.
Let's start hyper-local: what are your biggest "pet peeve" templates when translating? Thanks, Mathglot (talk) 04:42, 25 August 2023 (UTC)[reply]
((,)) hands down Elinruby (talk) 05:49, 26 August 2023 (UTC)[reply]
Yeah, unfortunately, the French stick that between contiguous references. Unfortunately, we can't usurp the existing ((,)) template in en-wiki, which has another use (it leaves a middot character), so we're limited to just removing the ones from the French articles we copy from. But if that's your worst pet peeve, you're in luck because it's pretty easy to eliminate them with a global replace in most offline editors. Mathglot (talk) 08:28, 26 August 2023 (UTC)[reply]


  1. ^ This is not 100% true at this point, because the French template can handle ranges like XVI-XVIII whereas our template doesn't yet; but expansion is planned.

Avoid machine translation[edit]

There is a discussion here about updating the Avoid machine translation section of Help:Translation. Participants in this project may be interested as Help:Translation was spun out of this page. TSventon (talk) 12:59, 24 October 2023 (UTC)[reply]

Merge proposal[edit]

I am proposing merging Help:Translation into this page because it appears to have the same scope, and could therefore benefit from consolidation to focus/centralize our editorial energy. ((u|Sdkb))talk 02:00, 19 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]

For background, Help:Translation was split out in 2021 by PBS as explained at Wikipedia talk:Translation/Archive 4#Move to the Help workspace. TSventon (talk) 16:33, 19 January 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Sdkb I agree that makes sense as the help page is mostly policy which was originally this page. TSventon (talk) 14:46, 28 March 2024 (UTC)[reply]
Another page, even if slightly redundant, makes absolute sense in Help workspace. It is simply there to help newcomers find their way around. Lectonar (talk) 10:33, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
The other page would be redirected here if merged. Redundant project pages are bad — they increase the maintenance burden (neither of these two is very good) and confuse newcomers who get overwhelmed by the number of possible places to read help. Sdkbtalk 13:37, 3 April 2024 (UTC)[reply]
I am a newbie at translation tools on WP, you - Sdkb - are probably not. I am good enough in several languages to translate well (e.g no native speaker of English, but can discuss even some linguistics in it; did several translations "manually"at WP), but not used to this environment and not yet successful with it's translation tools.
I tried to use them, and didn't succeed yet to finish, and publish, the translation with translation tool yet. I think draft of my translation got discarded in the end, because it wasn't published too long when I was trying to make tool work to the end. I am rereading the instructions before trying again now, and intend to document how I didn't succeed if it should happen again. I also need to reread help files in target language (next intended translation is from English article, and the next from German).
From my point of view, current contents of wikipedia:translate and help:translate articles are not only significantly different, they address different topics. You (Sdkb) address economy, and ease of keeping contents of both articles consistent with your proposal, I am showing you the problem of usefulness of them to a newbie - and I think this priority is higher.
Different topics addressed:
  • Wikipedia:translate is addressing mostly what you can do when you need (e.g. how request or propose a translation), or want to help with, a translation, and what to do if an existing translation is not yet adequate (e.g. .how to mark it by appropriate template).
  • Help:translate addresses how to do the translation (e.g. what policies to keep in mind to adhere to, and how to find, enable, and use the translation tool etc.). That is the piece I think I'll need most at the moment.
Again, from my point of view, if the articles get merged, those two primarily different scopes should be easily found (by a newbie, not only it's editor).
If they are not merged, the preamble (of both current articles) should clearly show this difference (and I'd currently prefer that; might change my mind after next - hopefully successful - try at translation with WP translation tools). Also, in how to translate (current help:translate) should probably be addressed what is in common and what is the difference between sandbox and draft space (I'd feel much more comfortable to experiment with translation tool in sandbox first; the concept of draft space is not even mentioned in (either) current (en) translate article (if draft space exists, the fact is a no-brainer for an old hand, and pure guesswork for a newbie). Marjan Tomki SI (talk) 03:59, 15 May 2024 (UTC)[reply]