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Researchers want to 'correct' Japanese English

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Japanese English - Level 0

Some professors in Japan are worried. They say the government uses computer software translation too much. A lot of software creates strange words. They confuse English speakers. This may be bad for Japan's tourism industry. They say the strange, translated English words are embarrassing for Japan.

The software often gives bad translations of the Chinese characters used in Japanese. An example of this is the name of job centres in Japan, called "Hello Work". The professors say English speakers could correct this. A store is using the slogan, "Stay Positive" for Christmas. Many people think this is wrong during coronavirus.

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Japanese English - Level 1

Chinglish is Chinese English and Singlish is Singaporean English. Professors in Japan are worried about Japanese English. They say the government uses too many computer translations. These create strange expressions, which confuse English speakers. The professors worry this could harm Japan's tourism industry. They say the increasing amount of strange, translated words is becoming an "embarrassment" to Japan.

Computer software often gives bad translations of Chinese characters used in Japanese. One example of this is job centres being called "Hello Work". The professors say English speakers could check and correct the strange English. A Christmas message being used by a Japanese department store has also worried people. It says "Stay Positive." Many people think this is the wrong thing to say during coronavirus.

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Japanese English - Level 2

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There are many types of English. Some well-known ones in Asia are Chinglish in China and Singlish in Singapore. Some professors in Japan are worried about how the government uses English. In particular, they say the government uses computer translations too much. Many translations create strange and confusing expressions. Many of these are even confusing to English speakers. The professors worry this could have a negative impact on Japan's tourism industry. They say the increasing amount of strange, translated words is becoming a "national embarrassment" in Japan.

The professors say computer software often gives bad translations of the Chinese characters used in Japanese writing. Examples of this are job centres called "Hello Work" and a plan to help tourism during the COVID-19 pandemic called "Go To Travel". The professors say the strange translations could easily be corrected if they were checked by an English speaker. A Christmas message being used by a Japanese department store has worried people. It says "Stay Positive." Many people think this is the wrong thing to say during coronavirus.

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11 online activities    |    8-page printable   (PDF)

Japanese English - Level 3

There are many types of English around the world. Some well-known varieties in Asia include Chinglish in China, Singlish in Singapore and Japanese English. A group of language experts in Japan is troubled by how the government uses English. In particular, it says the government uses computer or online translation too much. Researchers say many translations create strange and confusing words and expressions. Many of these are confusing to English speakers. The researchers worry this could have a negative impact on Japan's tourist industry. They even say the increasing amount of unsuitable words is becoming a "national embarrassment" in Japan.

The research team says computer software gives odd or incorrect translations for individual kanji - the Chinese characters used in Japanese writing. There are many examples of this, including "Hello Work" - the name for job centres, and "Go To Travel" a plan to help tourism in Japan during the COVID-19 pandemic. The team says software creates, "unintentionally funny translations that could easily be corrected if they were just checked by an English speaker". Businesses also create this English. The Christmas message being used by the Seibu Sogo department store has raised eyebrows. It says "Stay Positive." Many people believe this is the wrong thing to say during coronavirus and "Stay Happy" would be better.

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25 online activities    |    27-page printable    |    2-page mini-lesson



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