Most Funny Consequences Of Relying On Machine Translation

The world is evolving, and technology does, too. More and more people find solutions to their problems online and stop using professional services. After all, who needs costly human translation when you have Google?

Well, you do. While machine translation is convenient and cheap, it’s not the best solution when we’re talking about business. You may save much time and money by translating something online, but in the long run, that can result in a huge financial loss.


If you work on a global market, don’t neglect professional translations. Look for translation services online or find professionals in your area – for example, here: Otherwise, you may encounter these funny but reputation-ruining mistakes.

Crashing New Market

Entering a new market can be highly beneficial for your business – you find new customers, attract foreign investors, and gain a professional reputation. Unless, of course, you ruin everything with inadequate translation.

Take Coca-Cola, for example. In 2018, the company attempted to combine Maori and English on a vending machine in New Zealand, trying to say “Hello, mate.” What they didn’t take into account was that “mate” means something completely different in Maori. New Zealanders saw “Hello, death” written on a machine stocked full of Coke.

This mistake didn’t ruin Coca-Cola’s reputation, of course – but for a smaller company, that would have been a disaster.

Political Fails

In politics, a translation fail can easily mean the end of someone’s career. However, people forget about that too often.

A few years ago, an Israeli prime minister wanted to congratulate Netta Barzilai on Twitter for winning Eurovision. He started his message with “Neta, you are a real darling”. What he didn’t expect was that Microsoft would translate that into English as “Neta, you are a real cow”. That didn’t do much harm to anyone but revealed a lot about automatic translation.

Confusing Menus

Translating menus is probably the most challenging part of many chef’s jobs. While those who know English rely on their skills, the others use Google Translate. And we often see the confusing (but hilarious) results on Twitter – just check this out. Remember: if you own a global food company, hiring a professional is a must.

Machine translation has eased many people’s lives, but that doesn’t mean Google Translate is suitable for any purpose. If you’re a business owner, hiring a professional translator can save you much effort that may be put into fixing a mistake. Check this infographic provided by Architekst to learn more about the differences between machine and human translation – and ensure your good reputation.

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