As the 2012 U.S. elections draw ever closer, some candidates scramble to curry favor with influential Latino voters while others have dismissed the Hispanic vote altogether. However, the impact of the Latino vote in this year’s elections cannot be ignored by those seeking office, as Latino voters’ say at the ballot box will make or break competitive Senate races and decide who ascends to the office of president (or remains there) for the next four years.
The flexibility of the Latino vote means that this crucial demographic could swing either way politically in this year’s election. Most Republican candidates have firmly taken an anti-immigrant stance, and many of the party’s key priorities fail to resonate with Latinos. Nonetheless, President Obama hasn’t come through on important campaign promises to the Hispanic community and has, in fact, distanced himself from many in the demographic by increasing the number of deportations.
Immigration is the key issue for Latino voters. A recent poll conducted by Univision News revealed immigration reform as the number one concern for registered Hispanic voters, followed closely by jobs and the economy. Even when voters find that they agree with a candidate’s take on economic issues, they are less likely to vote for that candidate if he supports restrictive immigration policies.
In spite of a tremendous push to register Latino voters in 2008 and 2010, only some 60% of Latino adults are registered to vote, in comparison with 70% of blacks and 74% of whites. So, while the Latino population is experiencing dramatic growth, the influence of the Hispanic demographic on the 2012 election could be even greater than expected if voter registration drives result in more Latinos on the rolls.
The Latino community is engaged and energized ahead of these elections. Organizations such as The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and Mi Familia Vota are working hard to register every eligible Latino voter and to encourage Hispanic turnout at this year’s election, which is predicted to be 25% higher than in the previous presidential election.
Companies and multinational corporations operating in the global market require translation services for many aspects of their business. Marketing materials, websites, help forums, compliance documentation, technical handbooks, and human resource manuals all require language support. To meet demand, departments routinely contract with various translation service providers from around the world; however, in light of budget constraints and corporate belt-tightening, perhaps this isn’t the most sensible approach.
The independent market research firm Common Sense Advisory released new data that confirms the benefits of centralizing language services with one trusted provider. Using this approach can lead to decreased costs and faster times to market for greater volumes of translated material. The firm conducted a survey with 226 respondents at international companies that purchase translation services. In spite of global economic concerns, the majority of these firms reported that their translation spending had increased from 2010 to 2011.
Key findings in the report “Translation Performance Metrics” include:
- Translation costs are extremely small in comparison to the revenue they create. Virtually all companies noted that their translation costs fell well below 1% of total revenue.
- Key industries are spending more on translation services. Spending increased by more than ¼ in the financial services, health care, manufacturing and insurance sectors.
- The budget for translation services correlates to the size of the firm. The majority of companies anticipate an increase in their budget for translation services. Firms with revenue in excess of US $10 billion expect the highest percentage increase (31.1%).
- There’s an upward trend in project size and the number of languages. Large translation projects consisting of one million words or more increased across almost all industries. The organizations that participated in the survey estimated that ¼ of their projects would contain a million or more words by the year 2012. In 2009, projects of 10,000 words or less were translated into an average of 16 languages, with predictions for 2012 estimating some 20 different target languages.
For more information, visit Common Sense Advisory.
Sometimes even seasoned, professional translators come up short in the hunt for a tricky term. Here are five resources available on the Internet where you can search for translations of terms or discuss terminology with fellow translators. Remember: Seek, and ye shall find.
ProZ.com offers a searchable database of personal glossaries and an archive of questions previously posed by fellow translators. If your search there yields no clues, take advantage of KudoZ, a forum that allows you to pose a question to colleagues in your language pair who can lend a helping hand when the proper translation of a term seems to elude you.
In addition to this site’s extensive dictionary offerings, WordReference also features an excellent forum that translators can turn to with questions. The forums there are quite active, but if an answer doesn’t seem forthcoming, the moderators often chime in and help.
With a similar set-up to that of ProZ.com, TranslatorsCafé provides a forum for translators to discuss challenging terminology with colleagues. TCTerms allows you to take advantage of collective wisdom when you’re really feeling stumped.
Although Linguee lacks the interactive/conversational features of the other sites, it’s still a valuable term-search resource for translators. Linguee, the combination of a dictionary and translation search engine, hunts for a match to your query from among assorted texts culled from professionally translated websites and sources in the public domain such as EU documents and patent specifications. Unlike the results provided by a machine translation tool such as Google Translate, every entry that appears in the Linguee dictionary has been translated by humans.
Sometimes contributors can be slow to respond in a translation-specific forum, which is why Twitter can be a valuable resource when you’re in a real pinch. Thousands of translators participate in the conversation on Twitter, so if you’ve taken the time to get to know some of them, you can pose questions to colleagues and receive responses, sometimes in mere seconds!