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Code of Good Subtitling Practice

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On this post, I will be giving 10 tips on good subtitling practice. Everyone is free to share their ideas and comment.

1) Subtitlers must always work with a (video, DVD, etc.) copy of the production and if possible, should have a copy of the dialogue list and a glossary of unusual words, names and special references. 

2) It is the subtitler’s job to spot the production and translate and write the subtitles in the (foreign) language required.

3) Translation quality must be high with due consideration of all idiomatic and cultural nuances.

4) Straightforward semantic units must be used.

5) Where compression of dialogue is necessary, the results must be coherent.

6) Subtitle text must be distributed from line to line and page to page in sense blocks and/or grammatical units.

7) As far as possible, each subtitle should be semantically self-contained.

8) The language register must be appropriate and correspond with the spoken word.

9) The language should be (grammatically) “correct” since subtitles serve as a model for literacy.

10) All important written information in the images (signs, notices, etc.) should be translated and incorporated wherever possible.

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Written by addjdl

February 3, 2010 at 5:33 PM

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