“Every industry needs people who have linguistic and cultural competence… Companies spend so much time and energy on their international strategies that language can’t be an afterthought. It has to be at the forefront of everything that you’re doing if you want to do it right.”
Jump down to listen to the podcast
This podcast with guest Jill Kushner Bishop (bio) is a fascinating one on several levels. At each of them, I invite you to think about the role the concepts play in YOUR life and the lives of those dear to you. They do!
At the level of identity, Jill tells a great story of her interest in and studies of Ladino language and culture. She has a family and personal identity that called this interest out in her, and she followed that interest all the way to advanced degrees.
Pause for a moment, and ponder on your own identity and background. Perhaps when you do so, you’ll be whispering to yourself, “I don’t have any interesting background.” I assure you, you do! Our own innate talents, our own developed insights and strengths, our own stories and experiences seem “normal” or even boring to us, but to others, YOU are fascinating. What is your background? What and who do you know? What has interested you from early on? These elements and more are part of your identity, and your identity is unique, and others do and will find it deeply interesting. Ponder over your unique identity and culture.
The next concept that Jill and I cover in depth is that of “transcreation.” For your consideration for the moment – you will want to listen to the podcast to learn more about this idea and the work that Jill and her company do – the aspect for our focus is that YOU have a way of looking at and talking about the world that is unique to your background and experiences and language. That is, you have a culture. When you talk with or write to or make a video for another, you’re coming at that sharing from your own perspectives and background. You cannot be sure that your words and understanding of the world are matching the world experience of those who are receiving your message.
Becoming aware of this fact is a shock for most! Businesses doing work in new countries – the COVID impact has provided new opportunities and challenges this way – might learn the different perceptions and expressions by accident, to their sorrow. (Jill’s work is specifically designed to insure they do not have this problem.)
But you already know about transcreation! Think about it: as a parent, you need to develop the skill set of picking and using words, images, and experiences that your child can grasp as you move them from their own attitudes and behaviors to those of the adult world in which they will live. Good teachers do this for students. Good managers do this for employees. Good leaders do this for communities and countries.
Without transcreation, our worlds become siloed and our communication breaks down.
Transcreation is the work, Jill shows us, of people working together, each one bringing their perspective and expertise to bear on creating clarity of message for the good of both parties in communication. We create clarity together. We need each other’s experiences and strengths to make sense to one another.
It’s humanity’s language and culture gift from all to all.
Enjoy the podcast.
Click to listen:
Scroll down for full transcript.
Thank you for always focusing on the possibilities, opportunities and the power of language and what it can do for us individually - and collectively!
Yes, @NorahLulicJones definitely has the talent of "bringing out" the best in others or allowing them to showcase themselves in the best light! Thank you for directing the spotlight on others who have great stories and talents to share with others.
Your podcasts are exceptionally relevant and applicable, thought-provoking and insightful, easy-to-follow and enjoyable!
You have an immense talent to draw the best from your participants.
Norah knows how to LISTEN - she really "hears" the message - and the interview is richer because of it. New questions come from the hearing.
Want to hear more? Access previous episodes, and get to know the wonderful people I talk with through the It’s About Language page, or by clicking on the Podcast tab above. You can also find this week’s episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Twitter.
As a certified Gallup Strengths coach, I can provide you or your organization personalized coaching to discover and build on your strengths.
I provide workshops, presentations, and talks that inspire and engage through powerful language insights, and I pair those insights with practical applications for the lives of educators, learners, businesses, and faith-centered organizations. I’d love to share ideas with your organization or group, and develop an event tailored to your objectives.
Norah Jones: I am very excited to welcome my guest, Jill Kushner Bishop, today to this podcast. Hi Jill.
Jill Bishop: Hi Norah.
Norah Jones: I’m just so delighted to have you here. I want to make sure that all of the folks that are listening today know that you are the founder, as well as the CEO, of Multilingual Connections. And information about Multilingual Connections and its website, multilingualconnections.com are all provided on my website for everyone to be able to take advantage of. So thank you for that ahead of time. And you’re supporting translation, transcription, transcreation, multimedia. Start by telling folks how you got into this business that has so much to do with so many facets of language, Jill.
Jill Bishop: Sure. Absolutely. Thanks Norah. Like so many stories, it’s not a point A to point B kind of situation. I was always fascinated by language and culture. And I thought I was going to be a high-school Spanish teacher. And after a few months of teaching, I loved it, but I knew I wasn’t ready to be done. So I did some traveling. I applied for grad school and wound up getting a doctorate in linguistic anthropology. Thought that was going to be my path, but I wound up coming back to Chicago. And through a number of opportunities, wound up using my work, my anthropological background and language background in the applied world, in the corporate research world.
I got a job then with Chipotle Mexican Grill, and I was rolling out language and culture programs at 130 restaurants in Chicago, Wisconsin, Texas, Minnesota, all these opportunities that came up that I never ever could’ve planned for in advance. And then I just started thinking about ways of doing something for myself that could be more flexible where I could have more ownership in decision-making. I had taught English and Spanish. I had taught internationally. And was just always interested in language and its application in the real world. Language teaching for more than just informational purposes or to have it on your college transcript.
And so, about 16 years ago, I started my business. Originally, it was called Workforce Language Services. We were providing customized English and Spanish training for hotels and restaurants and manufacturing facilities. But soon after, somebody I knew from college and high school called and asked if I could translate a website. And I said, sure. And then I figured out how to do that. And that was the beginning of our translation agency. So, many, many changes and pivots along the way, from 2006 to now. 2005 to now. But at this point, we don’t do any language training. It was hard to say goodbye to that. But it was an important business decision to say goodbye to the language classes. And we offer, as you said, translation, transcription, transcreation, voiceover, and subtitling in about 75 different languages.
Norah Jones: 75. Wow. Well, before I head in that direction, I have to say that, please connect, because I was originally planning on going into anthropology. My first class in college was a linguistics class, and that was it for me. That’s where I went after that. So linguistic anthropology and connecting that impulse of yours and that degree of yours to the real world usage, how do you make that connection? What are the aspects of what you have just described about those two interests of yours, before we get into specifically the language activities with which you’re engaged? That background?
Jill Bishop: Absolutely. Well, my great grandparents all came to the US from Eastern Europe. And they were Yiddish speakers. My grandparents spoke fluent English, but also Yiddish. And I was always interested in their use of Yiddish. And when they would switch from English to Yiddish, there were words that got passed down to my parents. And then to me, mostly the slangy, funny words that have become part of American English, I think, in many ways. And then my brother and I, growing up, studied Hebrew in our synagogue, and then in summer camps. And so, there were these two sides of language, of Jewish language, Hebrew and Yiddish, that I was really interested in. And particularly interested that my parents, in the middle of these two generations, didn’t know either of them.
So my grandparents would use Yiddish when they didn’t want my their kids to understand. My brother and I would use Hebrew when we didn’t want our parents to understand. But I was interested in choices around language and what it meant to speak these other languages, and what people were doing with language. And so, when I found linguistic anthropology, I actually took a class, or started a class in college, but it was an 08:30 class, and my next one wasn’t till noon. And I thought, when am I ever going to need this linguistic anthropology thing? So I dropped it. Never, ever imagining that not too long in the future, I would wind up getting a doctorate in it.
But I was interested in the intersection of language and culture. I was always interested in language itself, but more interesting to me was how people use language, what it meant about their identities, what they’re accomplishing through switching between different languages, why some people chose to pass on minority languages to their children and others decided not to. And so that’s what brought me to linguistic anthropology the second time, for the actual doctorate and coursework.
And I looked at— I spent a year in Israel among speakers of a dying dialect of Spanish called Judeo Spanish or Ladino. So when the Jews were exiled from Spain in 1492, they took with them the Spanish that they spoke at the time. And then over 500 years, isolated from mainland Spanish, their language evolved in different ways. And so I was looking at what people were doing to keep the language from disappearing, how they were documenting folktales, songs, stories, what they were doing with the language, and why that mattered, and what aspects of their identity were enacted when they were using that language as opposed to others. And so, that’s the linguistic anthropology side of things.
And then when I started doing the more applied work, going back into, not just academic language teaching, but workplace language teaching, it was with a much more specific goal in mind, or a very different goal in mind, of helping people do their jobs better, do that more safely, be able to interact with the teachers of their kids at school, just be more successful in what their goals were here in the US. And so, it’s been a really interesting process of seeing the way that language matters in people’s lives.
Norah Jones: Seeing the way that language matters in people’s lives. That’s fantastic. And I am still fascinated by the connection between language and the meaning to the people who speak it. What would you say are some of the most, well, powerful, touching, however you would like to pull the word out to connect for you personally. What are some of those insights that just truly blew your mind, or series of insights, if you wish.
Jill Bishop: Well, I’ll go back to the language training that we were doing from our workplace language programs that I initially started the business to focus on. We then opened a language school for adults and for children. And I was particularly interested in heritage languages. And so, people that wanted to learn a language because it was not so that they could get a good job, or just because it was interesting to them or for travel, although those were all very important and relevant reasons, but more to connect with their own culture. And so, we were offering kids’ classes. And there was a girl that was taking a Korean class. And I think she was in our six- to eight-year-old class. And her parents told me how she was able to Skype with her grandparents back in Korea, and sing a traditional Korean song that she had learned in our classes, and what that meant to the family. Or a family that was learning Chinese because they had adopted a daughter from China. And so, the adoptive daughter and the biological daughter were learning Chinese. And then the parents were learning Chinese. And then we also brought in the translation and were able to translate documentation and journals from the orphanage where she came from.
So, those types of experiences were really meaningful for me. And one of the reasons why it was really hard for me to say goodbye to the language classes, and in particular, the children’s language classes, because it was very much tied up with who I was personally and professionally. So there are those moments. And then there are moments when, on the translation side, most of our translation is corporate. But we do individual translations as well. And we helped a woman who’s father had passed away and needed to translate his death certificate and some documentation around that. And we did it super quickly. And I decided in the moment to just do it for free. She was struggling with so many different aspects of the experience, and I just wanted to be compassionate. And she wrote a note about how much that meant to her that we jumped in, we helped her, we turned it around so quickly. And on top of it, we were able to do it without charging her. And just the chance to impact people’s lives is pretty powerful. Those moments are particularly special to me.
Norah Jones: Thank you for sharing that story, Jill. And I’m resonating with it in my gut because my father was a refugee immigrant from Croatia. And I knew, throughout my life, because he told us brief stories, but only brief, and sometimes almost under duress, about coming to the United States. After his death two years ago, I discovered there was a file that had all of the papers in Croatian that talked about getting him ready to come to the United States.
And I have to say that, with regard to that touching relationship of language to identity, to meaning, to our lives, is that when I found that file, I sat on my sofa and I wept because I had discovered a cache of papers that because of the complexity of the language, and because of the older form of the language, was something that I couldn’t read. And here was this treasure of my father’s life in front of me that I didn’t know existed, and that I still couldn’t access. And so, I’m feeling the pain of that. And the joy of what must have been, in her life, when you gave her that gift of that translation.
Jill Bishop: Did you end up getting those documentation, that documentation, translated? So it’s still inaccessible?
Norah Jones: No. I never have.
Jill Bishop: Maybe one day.
Norah Jones: That’s right. It still is. Maybe one day. I hope so. We have talked, you and I, here already, but the identity, language and its identity and meaning in individual lives are so important. Now, one of the things that I noticed right away when I went to your website, the multilingualconnection.com, is the section on transcreation. That appealed to me right away, because, well, tell us about transcreation. Tell us what it is that transcreation is designed to do. Because people often know about translation or transcription. But I’m not so sure they know about transcreation and why you would have it.
Jill Bishop: You’re absolutely right. And there’s a lot of confusion in terminology where people think they need something, they need a translator, but they actually need an interpreter. The terminology is thrown around. And within the industry, we know what we mean, but not everybody from the outside knows. But transcreation is a newer term. And it really is not just translation, but as it says, it’s creation of new. And so, when you are doing multilingual marketing, you need to really think about your original intent of your message, and whether that will resonate with your target audience. And sometimes it’s not enough just to have something professionally translated. Sometimes there’s just simply not a one-to-one equivalent that will connect with people in that same way.
And so when you’re thinking about taglines or movie titles or marketing messages, that’s where going beyond just that translation becomes important. We actually did quite a bit of movie title and marketing content for a streaming service. And much of that work had to be trans-created. And so if you think of a title of a show like Orange is the New Black, you can translate that in a way that is grammatically correct in other languages, but it’s not going to mean anything. It’s just not going to mean anything to anybody. And so, in that kind of situation, you need not just a translator, but somebody who has creative marketing background, copywriting experience to really brainstorm what are you trying to convey and how can we create and re-envision that original in the target language, in a way that’s going to immediately go right to your heart, or right to that point of, or right to your sense of humor, and engage people in the exact same way. So it oftentimes means scrapping the original completely and coming up with something completely new.
Norah Jones: Fascinating.
Jill Bishop: And so, that is a skill.
Norah Jones: Oh, it’s a huge skill, I imagine.
Jill Bishop: Yeah.
Norah Jones: Linguistically, culturally, how do you get the people that do it? What are their backgrounds?
Jill Bishop: Yeah. So oftentimes, they are copywriters or people that have been in marketing for a long time, or translators that have been doing this type of creative work for so long that they really understand that nuance. With high priority titles, we often have multiple people working together to brainstorm. So we bring them together, all from different backgrounds, different experiences. They throw out all kinds of ideas, share those ideas, go back, refine them, come back together. So it can be a very collaborative process when needed. And it’s certainly something that’s growing in importance as everyone’s trying to do more business globally. You need to really think about something that you would take for granted, your marketing messages, you need to understand, is this something that, will people care about it? Will they understand it? Will it resonate with them? Will it move them to action or move them to feel something? And so, that’s where you really need to take the time to understand the culture, and not just the language of your target.
Norah Jones: Brilliant. And I imagine that many of the people that are listening today are aware of the ones, the cultural linguistic gaffes that have made people laugh, the Nova car and so forth. But with the intensity of the experience, with the specialization of experience that you have with your company here, what are some examples that you say, this quintessentially shows how we can just drop the original, basically completely, and start again to appeal to the heart, to the experiences, and to the sensibilities of those in a new culture, a product, for example?
Jill Bishop: Well, I mean the Nova experience is great. So for those that don’t know it, the Chevy Nova, in Latin America, in Spanish, “Nova” means it doesn’t go. So who wants to buy a car that is called it doesn’t go. So there are tons and tons of those types of examples. And in that kind of situation, we’ve had clients come to us and say that we’re going to market this new product. Can you check to make sure that this name doesn’t have any meaning, isn’t vulgar, doesn’t have something that people will associate with it. And so our linguists will do research to make sure that that is a safe name. So that’s a service that’s not transcreation as much as linguistic validation of that plan. And then on the transcreation side, when we’re creating something new, that’s where we would have a different set of linguists come in.
But your question about those gaffes, you never want to be the company that is the new gaffe and the new new one that’s mocked. And I would say, more often than not, in these types of marketing campaigns that fall flat, they’re not going to be the Nova or the embarrassing ones. They’re just going to fall flat and make people scratch their heads and wonder, what are you really trying to convey here? And so, companies spend so much time and energy on their international strategies that language can’t be an afterthought. It has to be at the forefront of everything that you’re doing if you want to do it right.
And you need to have the right people involved. The right people, the right professionals, the right agencies, to make sure that you’re not just turning to look over the shoulder at somebody in the next cubicle, assuming people are ever in cubicles again, and say, hey, you speak this language, how does this sound? Or can you translate this for me? That’s fine in a pinch, but it’s never a good long-term strategy. So we always recommend that when companies are planning for multilingual work, that they really think it through, and find a good partner for it from the get go
Norah Jones: Specialization and understanding language, meaning, cultural background. How did you gather, how do you continue to gather, your teams together in your company? What are some of the backgrounds and expertise areas of those that are working with you, for you?
Jill Bishop: Sure. I started the business in my den, off the kitchen, and then moved into my basement. And right before my son was born, I realized I probably needed to hire somebody. So I hired a couple of part-time people. He actually grew up for a while thinking that they lived in the basement, but they did not. But at the time, it was people who loved language and had strong organizational skills. And those were my criteria for hiring people. As we became a more sophisticated company, we needed more than that. And so, within our organization, the largest number of roles is our project management. And so they’re the ones who are the go-betweens with our clients and our linguists to understand what the client’s projects are, what their needs are, come up with the right workflow, and then determine which of our linguists are the right fit, and oversee the project from start to finish.
We then have people in client relations. We have vendor managers. So we have a talent management team of three or four that are doing all of the recruiting and the vetting of the linguists, to make sure we have the right people for the right service. So when you’re doing a translation or when you assigning a project, it’s not enough just to have a native speaker of the target language. You want to make sure they’re a professional. That it’s a professional translator that has expertise in those areas, and the right regional language dialect or variation, that right technology expertise. So it’s so much more than just the language skills themselves.
And so at this point, when we look for people to join our team, our ideal is that they have experience in translation, either as linguists or as project managers or in operations or talent management. But again, a love of language and culture. And then strong computer skills, strong customer service skills, team orientation. And certainly attention to detail, and writing and speaking skills.
Norah Jones: A phenomenal list. Thank you so much for it. And one of the things that I’m excited about with regard to you being a guest here on my podcast is the potential audience that will be listening to some possibilities of working with language that they may not have considered before. So let’s go for just a moment into the educational scene and say, when you, Jill, look at the kinds of expertise that is needed in order to fulfill some of these translations, interpretive transcription, transcreation, and support, all these different things that you do, what are the kinds of experiences in a classroom that students may well be experiencing? How would you encourage that or help to drive that, if you could?
Jill Bishop: Sure. So I’ll say that growing up, when I was studying Spanish in high school, our teacher said that we should study Spanish so we could be stewardesses. And she said that with the female term. So that was really the only career opportunity I knew about for my language, aside from being a teacher. These days, that’s certainly not the case. There’s so few industries where you couldn’t benefit from having another language, for your career growth. And so nowadays, you see much more, of course, around international relations, linguistics, all kinds of areas where language is more important. And you certainly see translation programs in a way that didn’t exist in the eighties when I was in high school, and later in college.
And so, I’ll say right now, certainly going through a professional translation program is wonderful if you know you want to be a translator. There are also outside of degree programs. There are certificate programs offered through a number of universities for people who are already fluent in a language, and who want to learn the skills to be a translator, for example. To be an interpreter for face-to-face or virtual interpretation needs, there are also interpretation training programs. A great resource is the American Translators Association website. The ATA certifies translators and interpreters, and has a lot of ongoing professional development information. The Association of Language Companies has information about our industry. There are a number of different industry associations, GALA, globalization and localization association. For anybody who’s interested in careers in translation or interpretation, I would definitely recommend looking at some of those industry resources. So that’s a great start.
But as always, it’s not just about the language, it’s about culture. It’s about cultural nuance. It’s about all of the technologies, being very savvy with the technologies that are required to do your jobs these days. It’s about customer service. Your clients are your customers. But we also feel that, of course, our clients are our clients. But in many ways, our linguists are our clients too. We want to keep them both happy. So we want to keep them involved and engaged and supporting our linguists so that they can do the best work for us and, as the end goal, for our clients.
As a translator, it can be a lonely process. You’re typically working on your own, from your desk, from your couch, wherever you’re comfortable. You have to be really organized about how you’re going to keep your different assignments going, if you’re working for multiple agencies, for example. So keen organization skills, attention to detail, and really being focused on customer service to deliver exactly what you’ve promised your client, in the right time, will help ensure your success in this industry.
Norah Jones: Thank you, Jill. Now, as a teacher of Spanish. You may very well have already applied in front of your students some of the things that you have learned and understand now in your job and in your company. But if I were to say to you, let’s teach a Spanish class this week. What are some of the things that, if you were standing in front of, say, a group of high school students in a Spanish classroom, that you would be sure to bring to their attention, be sure to include as part of the curriculum while you are working with the language?
Jill Bishop: Sure. And we actually do that periodically with some of the local high schools. When they have their career days, we send different members of our team there to talk to the language students so that they can see what kind of career opportunities there are outside of what they’re already aware of, and ask questions. But I would say, again, as a translator, we only hire translators to translate into their native language.
Norah Jones: Into?
Jill Bishop: Into their native language, yeah. So someone like me, 20 years ago, I was a pretty fluent Spanish speaker. I’m much less so now. I wouldn’t do any translations at this point. But I would’ve hired myself to potentially translate from English to Spanish. I’m sorry. From Spanish to English, my native language. But I would never have hired myself to translate from English into Spanish. As a non-native English speaker, that nuance and subtlety just will never be as good as the opposite direction.
And so, to students in language classes today, their opportunities are translating from the language they’re studying into English or transcribing from that language into English. And so, the more you know your own language in terms of spelling, grammatical issues, orthography, all of that is important. Formatting is so important. But understanding the culture and the cultural equivalents. And so, what we take as given is very different in other countries and other cultures. And so, you have to still get to that same level of cultural understanding so that you can render that original content in your own language. So you need the language skills, but you really need to understand the culture and what people are doing with language in those countries, and be able to figure out a way to replicate that in your own language.
Norah Jones: Based on your knowledge of the industry, because of your company and all the things that are provided, how would students in a classroom get that kind of cultural understanding, that level of cultural nuance?
Jill Bishop: Certainly by living abroad, always the best way to get the culture and the language. But then accessing content, original content. So watching shows, which is so easy to do now. Certainly wasn’t, when I was learning the language. So watching shows in the language, in the original language, to see how people communicate, to hear that language firsthand. I would say that those are going to be the best ways of just getting that original content. And if you can’t do it through living abroad, then do it through consuming their media, shows, newspapers, magazines, blogs, anything to get at how people really talk.
Norah Jones: Where would you counsel learners of all ages to go to discover some of the opportunities in language and cultural usage, such as this? You say you go to the local school system and provide more insights and more options to students. Are there places, do you have a video yourselves of doing that, or other places that you might suggest that learners of all ages go to discover these possibilities?
Jill Bishop: As for careers in language?
Norah Jones: Yes.
Jill Bishop: It’s a good question. And I would say I don’t have that as a standalone. But I think there’s so much information available online now that even if you Googled careers in using a foreign language or second language, I think there’d be a tremendous wealth of opportunities. But from my world, with languages, the focus is translation, the translation industry and language teaching. But again, every industry needs people who have linguistic and cultural competence.
Years ago, back at Chipotle, when I was working for corporate, we would give a linguistic bonus to managers that spoke Spanish. And so, even though their jobs had nothing explicitly to do with language, the fact that they were supervising a largely Spanish-speaking population and workforce meant that any language skills that they had, not any language, they still had to have a working proficiency in it. That meant that they were a more valuable employee. And so they got a bonus at that point. And so companies that reward linguistic fluency will get just more qualified people who have a wider, I think, a more open mind, a more global perspective on the world. Even if they don’t use language on a day-to-day basis, there’s some way that it’s going to help them think critically or interact more effectively with people.
Norah Jones: That’s beautifully said. And thank you. Because even just the exposure can make a big difference. Now, Jill, you’ve had this company, how many years have you had? When did you establish?
Jill Bishop: 2005. So we just hit 16.
Norah Jones: [crosstalk]. 2005?
Jill Bishop: Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Norah Jones: Fantastic. What changes have you seen so far in what you have been expected to do? And where do you think your company or the concept of multilingual work is headed?
Jill Bishop: That’s a great question? And I would say, early on, in the days when I was managing my own projects with sticky notes and reminders in my Outlook calendar, things have changed a little bit since then, significantly. Actually, we’re downsizing our office because our team only wants to come back one day a week. And so today we’re moving. And I was going through old files and I found some faxes from the early days of documentation. And things have certainly changed.
And so, certainly the technology requirements are far beyond what they ever were. At the time, when I started the business, Microsoft Word, maybe InDesign were the file formats that we would get. At this point, we do subtitling and voiceover. We use sophisticated project management platforms and data reporting. And so, the technology piece has become far more prominent than I ever would have expected. We also offer machine translation with a post editor. So not just sending a document through Google and calling it quits, but having a trained linguist who is trained to edit machine translation and anticipate errors that the engines would make. That’s a service that we’re offering because people need content faster, cheaper. Sometimes they just need something for internal purposes and don’t have the luxury of using professional translation and editing. And so we want to be able to provide what they need.
So those are all areas that we never would have expected. All of our subtitling requests, even our transcription requests, I never anticipated would be at the point that they’re at. So, the technology side is tremendous. And what we do is bring together the best of humans and the best of technology. So that our clients ultimately are getting all the benefits of speed and efficiency, but the human touch and the cultural nuance.
Norah Jones: I gather from that, that that was not what I would consider a strong endorsement of college or high school students using Google Translate.
Jill Bishop: Using Google Translate-
Norah Jones: Am I right?
Jill Bishop: That is right. Yes.
Norah Jones: And why not? What is it? Now, you are a professional. So tell us, from a professional point of view, why it might not be a good idea.
Jill Bishop: So, in the student world, it’s cheating. So there’s that point.
Norah Jones: Oh that part.
Jill Bishop: [crosstalk] small details. And the other side is that it can come back and bite you in the butt. So you’re cheating and you can get caught because you don’t always know where the mistakes are. So sometimes, machine translation is shockingly good. But the challenge is when you don’t know what you don’t know, and you think you’ve got it right. You think the machine got it right, and it didn’t get it right at all. Because it’s as good as it is. It’s easy to assume that it’s going to be good a hundred percent of the time, but it’s not. And so, you just don’t know what you don’t know. And there are areas, as we discussed with transcreation, where cultural nuance matters, and understanding the context matters, and the machines, they’re just not nuanced enough yet to be able to pick up on something like “Orange is the New Black.” How are they going to get there? They might translate it accurately, but not effectively?
Norah Jones: Accurately, but not effectively. And I know that we try to encourage learners to think the long-term about the effectiveness of their own personal communication. But this is also a warning for the short term accomplishment of the grade this week. Not only the cheating part, but also just the effectiveness part. Well, Jill, appreciate it. If you would, wrap us up here by doing one more thing, imagining now this podcast audience that had been listening to, thank you, such a beautifully explained and in depth experience. One more, I don’t know what, invitation, exhortation, reminder, what do you want to leave the listening audience with today?
Jill Bishop: Sure. I would say that it’s not just about the words, it’s about the culture, and that nuance matters. And so when it matters, when the content that you’re working on matters to you, the right people matter. So I would encourage individuals and organizations to find a good partner that they feel like they can trust, that will make good decisions together with you.
Norah Jones: Nuance matters. What a very special and important aspect to bring forth in anything in our lives today, but certainly linguistically and culturally. Jill Kushner Bishop. Thank you so much for being here today.
Jill Bishop: It’s been my pleasure. And thank you for bringing information about multilingualconnections.com. Best fortune to you as you continue with your wonderful company. And I look forward to hearing much, much more, as we continue to develop our linguistic and cultural connections. Thanks for sharing.
Norah Jones: Thank you so much, Norah.
[Closing material]Become a Sponsor