8 thoughts on “Woe is meme

  1. I don’t think “lively” would be terrible depending on the context? I more immediately think of something like “bustling.” Was curious what the good old Mac dictionary defined it as after this and got this:


    So, by definition, “lively” would be okay so long as you’re talking about lively in the “this place is packed and full of energy” sense of it, or like someone sounding lively as in like full of spunk/pizzazz/pep/enthusiasm and not lively in the sense of “full of life and vigor” or “resilient” or something like that.

    His point i think is that everyone always just translates it as “lively” without giving it a second thought most of the time. It’s usually a textbook definition of the word, but misses out on some of the nuance.

  2. Ben: Hahaha. その通りだな。

    The point of the meme isn’t that “lively” is an incorrect translation, only that the translator whose work I was checking used it for EVERY INSTANCE of the word にぎやか, which gets thrown around a lot more than the word “lively” and in different circumstances.

    The context I was considering was a sales display. The word にぎやか was used to describe how the display was full of lots of colors and products. “Lively” didn’t really hit it, and seeing it half a dozen times in the same translation was frustrating – thus, translate it that way ONE MORE TIME, MOTHERFUCKER – I DARE YOU!

    The same translator translated every instance of など as “etc.” Very frustrating.

  3. I definitely notice when an odd English word or phrase gets used in translation, and it’s obvious what the phrase was in Japanese.

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