December 2, 2023

Conference Translation and Interpretation

Anyone who has organized or participated in an international conference knows the importance of conference translation and interpretation. Unfortunately, many people still confuse these two different professions into one. Read on to learn about the difference and how vidby can help your next conference efforts.

What is conference interpretation?

What is conference interpretation Conference interpretation is a translation of spoken content from one language to another. This includes presentations by speakers, roundtable discussions, panels, negotiations, and meetings. A crucial feature of interpretation is that it takes place in real time. The aim of interpretation is to convey the right meaning of the speaker’s words. Nobody expects the exact word-for-word translation. At the same time, delivering the right meaning is crucial. This is why interpreters must have the nerves of steel and be quick on their feet. 

A conference translator, on the other hand, works with the written text. They translate the conference materials, handouts, and signage into several major languages. This is done ahead of the event. 

Real-Time Interpretation in Action

So, how does real-time interpretation work in a conference setting? Here is the list of things you need to consider as an organizer. First, you have to decide on the number of language pairs. This will depend on your participant roster. Then you have to hire two interpreters for each language pair. This is necessary because simultaneous interpretation takes a lot of effort. Only regular breaks can ensure quality translation throughout the conference.

Real-Time Interpretation There are also technological issues to consider. What kind of equipment to use? Fortunately, that depends on the conference venue. It may include FM radios or infrared communications. There are microphones for the interpreters, headphones for everyone, and a control hub that brings it all together. The interpreters usually are given special booths. This ensures that their attention is kept squarely on the speakers’ words.

technological issues of Real-Time Interpretation Interpreters hear the speaker’s voice in their headsets and as the speaker talks, they translate into their microphone. There are different audio channels going from each interpreter to the control hub. From the hub, the translation goes to the audience’s headsets. The listeners can switch channels to listen to the translation in another language.

Live Interpretation at Meetings

But conferences are usually more than just speaker presentations or even roundtable discussions. Many meetings take place on the sidelines, whether it’s a business conference, a science one, or a charity get-together. Live interpretation is usually required for those meetings as well. This is especially true if the participants don’t share a common language. With fewer participants and smaller quarters, meeting translators usually work without equipment. And because meetings usually consist of dialogue, the translation method is not simultaneous but consecutive. The interpreter waits for the speaker to finish the thought and then translates it. 

Applying Conference Translation in Business

Applying Conference Translation in Business There is another field of application for meeting translation – and that is business. In the globalized world, companies constantly launch overseas expansion efforts and search for partners in new countries. Yes, English is the common languageof international business. But relying on it may hurt the quality of negotiations if it’s not a native language for the other sides. Bringing an interpreter to a meeting with potential business partners shows you respect them. It also ensures that no nuances of negotiations will be lost without translation. 

Finding a Conference Translator – for Fraction of the Cost

Interpreting is a very demanding job that requires many years of professional training. Plus, if you hire interpreters for a conference, you need to hire two for each language pair. Subsequently, the cost of their services can be very high. There may also be issues with availability. Especially if you need interpreters with the knowledge of less popular languages. But if you want a conference to be truly useful to all the participants, live interpretation is a must.

Fortunately, there is a cost-effective solution from vidby. It’s called MeetUp. It’s an AI-powered app that offers real-time translation in 70+ languages. With MeetUp, even participants with exotic native languages can enjoy a full translation of the conference events or take part in discussions. 

MeetUp has two modes of operations, for private Meetings and big Conferences. The former enables two people to speak to each other in two different modes. The latter allows up to 50,000 participants to receive translation in 70+ languages. The participants don’t even have to download the app. All that’s required is scanning a specially created QR code. Learn more about  vidby’s MeetUp