Monthly Archives: November 2009

Best practice: Introduce yourself to the interpreter

by Franco Gamero

Earlier this year I attended a Brake Colloquium in southern Brazil and assisted on a seminar on Heavy Truck Braking Systems at a local manufacturer. This conference was organized by the Society of Automotive Engineers of Brazil.

English was the main language used. I was pleasantly surprised that most of the attendees and staff were fluent in English. There were, however, two interpreters English< >Portuguese.

I introduced myself and MiTiN prior to the conference as they needed to know the contents of the presentations. This is a very important practice because it prepares the interpreter. It also gives a chance to the presenter to clarify some terminology that might be unknown, as was the case with these very highly technical presentations. They did an excellent job and I was pleased to “rate” their interpretation.

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“Probation” in every language, part 2

More of Franco Gamero’s thoughts on the term probation and its international use.

After the experience in Argentina, I began to do Research on Probation. It is an accepted method by the United Nations and was initially accepted by many countries as far back as 1959.

Conclusions of my research: Continue reading

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“Probation” in every language, part 1

Last year, MiTiN vice president Franco Gamero regaled those of us at a legal interpreting study session with a funny story about a court defendant who kept talking about his being sentenced to “provecho”. That is the Spanish word for “benefit” or “advantage”, making the situation amusing, because he meant to use the English word “probation”, which he was mixing into his Spanish.

The big surprise, however, came when it was later discovered that the poorly educated defendant was using the correct terminology, while, for years, educated interpreters have been using the wrong term for probation.

Franco first found this out on a trip to Argentina earlier this year and then researched it on his own.  Click to see what he has written on the matter. Continue reading

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Attending Professional Events – Canon 10 Makes it a MUST

In choosing events, efforts are made to reflect the broad interests of members, to explore new things and to expand vistas of knowledge in anything and everything related to languages, in general and in particular. I am confident they meet members’ expectations.

On the other hand, it is our obligation to participate as active interlocutors in professional “dialogues”, and to provide an atmosphere of professional exchange of opinions. Moreover that the speakers, Attorney Rob Dice; Judy Raven and Barb Niemann, respectively the President and the Curriculum Director of the Accent Reduction Institute, have generously placed themselves on the giving end of the discussion table.

The Code of Ethics for Interpreters, Canon 10 says that: “Interpreters shall continually improve their knowledge and advance the profession through activities such as professional training and education and interaction with colleagues and specialists in related fields.” Then it says that, this is achieved through participation in workshops, professional meetings, and interaction with colleagues.

In a conversation with Franco Gamero, MiTiN Vice President, he said, “Canon 10 says interpreters SHALL continue professional education and development; therefore it is a MUST.” He also said that members’ participation in the upcoming events will be reflected retroactively to the beginning of the year.

In upcoming events you’ll be able to meet colleagues from the industry, Board members and the President, who attend every event. Refreshments, coffee, and light snacks are offered. Every event has a Question & Answer session, as well as a networking session. We look forward to seeing you there!
Emi Xhunga

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From the President

Dear MiTiN members and interested friends,

It was a cool summer. Before we could really feel a ‘real summer, we are already deep into fall and nearing winter. I hope all of you had a great summer, nevertheless. My last enjoyment of August was to visit Quebec City, meeting up with our daughter there. My French is rusty at best, so we were completely dependent on her French ability (French travelers who met her in Japan thought she was French). Interpreters are so important, aren’t they?

We have had great programs in the fall: “Deposition Rules” by a litigation attorney on Sept. 19 (it was a great session with many questions), a special presentation by the Accent Reduction Institute on Oct. 17, and “Reports on the ATA Conference” on November 21.

This year, at the end of October, ATA, the parent organization of our chapter celebrated its 50th anniversary in New York, where it started. The conference was attended by many MiTiN members, and it was a once-in-a-life-time celebration of not just the association, but also of all the translators and interpreters touched by it. Please visit, and click on conferences. You will get all the details there, including what educational sessions were presented.

I always say that if you are serious about translation or interpreting, you should go to an ATA conference. In fact, I’d say that even if you are half serious about the professions, it is worth going.

I look forward to seeing you all at our annual holiday party on December 19. Please visit our website to see the details of that event and of upcoming meetings.

Izumi Suzuki-Myers

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