Thursday, November 18, 2010

Change in Terms?

I got one of those "change in terms" letters in the mail from the bank that owns one of my big-box store credit cards.  As I was walking over to throw it in the recycle bag, I noticed that the spanish translation of it had one more paragraph than the english version.  So, with my minimal Spanish-fluency equivalency ability, I tried to figure out what it said.  And I did it!  And I'm surprised by what it says, but at the same time, I want to start using it on any Spanish-translations that we have to do for work.  Here's what it said (I have no idea how to make my computer type in Spanish, so please pardon my leaving off all of the accents or whatever - you'll still get the point, I think):

La traduccion al espanol de este documento sirve unicamente como referencia.  De haber alguna discrepancia entre este traduccion y el documento original en ingles, se usara la version en ingles.

Now, if you read Spanish, wonderful, you're all caught up.  If not, let me give you my rough translation: The Spanish translation of this document serves only as a reference.  If there are any discrepancies between this document and the original in English, use the version in English.

So, my question and the source of my slight amazement is the fact that, if you can't read in English, how the fuck are you supposed to be able to tell if there are any discrepancies?  You would do what I just did, and see that the approximately-the-same sized paragraphs match up along the documents, and the same paragraphs are emboldened, you'd see that the dates and amounts and numbers all match between the two, and you would move on.  And really, That's all I read in English anyway - what are late fees being raised by, and for what amount of balance, and when is this happening.  Those are pretty much numbers and a few big, bold words.  I didn't read a lick of the text on this letter. So I guess it doesn't really matter if you can't read the English version, as long as you can check that they both have the same numbers and all that, but still.  And yet, as I said, when we do public notice documents at work, and they have to be translated in Spanish, I want to start adding this language to those documents.  I'm such an effing lawyer.  Eeew.

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