Fan translation

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Fan translation (or user-generated translation[1]) refers to the unofficial translation of various forms of written or multimedia products made by fans (Fan labor),[1] often into a language in which an official translated version is not yet available.[1] Generally, fans do not have formal training as translators[1] but they volunteer to participate in translation projects based on interest in a specific audiovisual genre, TV series, movie, etc.[2]


Notable areas of fan translation include:


Fan translation of audiovisual material, particularly fansubbing of anime, dates back to the 1980s.[1] O'Hagan (2009) argues that fansubbing emerged as a form of protest over "the official often over-edited versions of anime typically aired in dubbed form on television networks outside Japan"[1] and that fans sought more authentic translated versions[1][3] in a shorter time frame.[3]

Early fansubbing and fandubbing efforts involved manipulation of VHS tapes, which was time-consuming and expensive.[3] The first reported fansub produced in the United States was Lupin III, produced in the mid-1980s, which required an average of 100 hours per episode to subtitle.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j O'Hagan, Minako (2009). "Evolution of User-Generated Translation: Fansubs, Translation Hacking and Crowdsourcing". The Journal of Internationalization and Localization 1: 94–121. doi:10.1075/jial.1.04hag. 
  2. ^ a b c Pérez-González, Luis (2014). Audiovisual Translation: Theories Methods and Issues. London: Routledge. p. 308. ISBN 978-0-415-53027-9. 
  3. ^ a b c d e O'Hagan, Minako (2008). "Fan Translation Networks: An Accidental Translator Training Environment?". In Kearns, John. Translator and Interpreter Training: Issues, Methods and Debates. Continuum International. pp. 158–183. 
  4. ^ "Self-Organized Citizen Translations of Harry Potter 7", 26 July 2007 (English translation of original Chinese article from yWeekend)