Portuguese translators' attitude to MT and its impact on their profession

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Abstract

Advances in Neural Machine Translation in recent years have brought these systems closer to delivering on the promise of universal, instant translatability. Magnified by the release of successive iterations of generative AI systems, recent news heralds both a new era for translation and the obsolescence of the translator. Drawing on data from recent language industry surveys produced by national and international organizations, as well as a specific survey on the Portuguese market with a longitudinal dimension, this paper seeks to determine the impact of technology, particularly MT, on the perceptions of translators and their career choices. The findings indicate that MT is widely used in the industry, but only a third of MT users rate their experience as positive. MT projects most frequently involve human participation as post-editors. MT is seen as having improved despite several shortcomings. However, greater incorporation of technology is seen as considerably reducing satisfaction and potentially triggering significant attrition. Knowledge of MT and first-hand experience are seen as positively influencing attitudes towards MT.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)24-35
Number of pages12
JournalL10N Journal
Volume2
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 21 Dec 2023

Keywords

  • Translation technology
  • Machine translation
  • Working conditions
  • Translator training
  • Attrition

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