[Let’s] Translate Poland (before 2012)

The main goal of the social campaign [Let’s] Translate Poland (before 2012) is the promotion of applied translation and communication for tourism, business and leisure in the urban environment. The project will start off with identifying information and communication gaps, and providing correct translation of all useful information for tourists and business people living and working in Poland.

We wish to use our vast resources, knowledge and experience to create a comprehensive multilingual environment that facilitates everyday communication for a multicultural society. The fifth anniversary of Polish accession to the EU, as well as the approaching organisation of Euro Cup Championships in Poland in 2012, offer a good opportunity to audit our country from a “linguistic” point of view. We want Poland to be perceived as a cosmopolitan and foreigner-friendly country, and this can only be achieved if we create a proper multilingual environment for foreigners.

Therefore we invite you to take an active part in our campaign.

People who are passionate about photography and keen observers of surrounding reality are invited to document communication gaps, mistranslations and linguistic absurdities in our environment and public space.

Others, who have contacts with foreigners for professional or social reasons, are encouraged to initiate discussions and draw up lists of communication issues that are most troublesome while travelling and living in Poland.

Last but not least, translators of the six most popular European languages (English, German, French, Russian, Spanish, Italian) are then invited to translate public announcements and other communication materials as part of our project.

We ask you to send in pictures presenting absurd mistakes and slips of the pen as well as translation proposals (for the most popular European languages) of texts, announcements, signs and information in the following fields:

  • Transport and logistics: airports, train and bus stations, bus and tram stops, means of transport (trains, buses, trams, metro etc.), roads (signs, parking meters etc.) etc.

  • Tourism: tourist attractions (museums, castles, etc.), tourist information points, tourist route signs, maps, guides, souvenirs, etc.

  • Infrastructure: accommodation (hotels, motels, pensions, farm tourism, flats and apartments for rent), boarding (restaurants, menus), entertainment (clubs, cinemas, theatres).

[Let’s] Translate Poland (before 2012) campaign has been divided into the following stages:

  • Collecting of pictures and materials concerning lack of translations, mistranslations and absurdities;

  • Translating information and announcements, creating a catalogue-dictionary of socially relevant notions and terms;

  • Passing the catalogue on to the media representatives and institutions and to administrative bodies responsible for the effective and proper promotion of our country, culture and national heritage (POT, PAIZ, city offices, museums, etc.);

  • Creating a map of “comprehensible” and attractive places in Poland.