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?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Do you remember the opening of the movie, “Love Actually”? As the camera pans across a bustling arrivals area at Heathrow International Airport, focusing on people laughing and hugging and kissing and crying, one of the things you notice is diversity.

There are people of all different skin tones, in all manner of garb. How many of them, do you suppose, spoke a language other than English as children?

A fair number, we’d guess, considering that there are more than 7,000 languages spanning the globe.

Though we may never know for certain when the first “official” translation was made, we know with some level of certainty that the first one celebrated by the Western world was in 300 B.C., when 70 learned individuals worked separately to translate the Bible from Hebrew to Greek.

Fast forward 24 centuries, and we have a whole industry dedicated to the art of translation. A whole industry! And thank god for that.

As in ancient times, accurately translating from one language to another is of the utmost importance. It allows the sharing of ideas and concepts across borders, nationalities and belief systems, without everyone having to be fluent. It allows us, as citizens of an increasingly global world economy, to connect and do business with people from all over the globe. But for it to work, the translation must be accurate and take into account cultural nuances and societal mores.

At Metafraze, we work closely with language translators who understand the importance of saying things in a way that the audience will understand and accept without being offended. We strive to translate your work — whether it’s website copy, ads, white papers, legal documents, medical records, whatever — in ways that will help you reach your goals.

When you make an effort to communicate in the language of the people you’re doing business with, you take the first step toward building a rapport and encouraging your business associates to trust you.

The second step is to ensure that the translated materials show respect for and awareness of cultural nuances, idioms, slang and the dos and don’ts of your audience. That’s where the work of a translator with extensive knowledge of both language and culture is critical.

If your business is at the point where it needs to begin working with a translator, Metafraze may be able to help. We currently partner with many small businesses, enterprise-level companies, and government organizations in providing translation and localization services, and we offer three levels of translation: raw machine translation, machine translation with post-editing to give it a human touch and full human translation.