A New Office

A New Office

Textcase USA is now up and running in the city of Boston. Laura Pepitone manages the Boston office but she’s also still working on projects for European customers. If you are a translator, you’ll continue to hear from her on a regular basis – most likely in the middle of the night because of the time difference. In Utrecht, project manager Rachel Vermeulen is coordinating the other half of our projects and our team is supported by interns. We are expecting to hire a junior project manager this summer. In the early 1970s, Textcase started in Groningen, in the north part of The Netherlands. Language students at the University of Groningen became the foundation of the Textcase freelance network. When Koert van der Scheer became the owner of Textcase in 2003, he moved the company first to the media capital of The Netherlands: Hilversum. In 2008, Textcase moved to its current location at the lovely Begijnekade in Utrecht, in the historic city center. In Boston, Laura Pepitone joined a co-working community where hundreds of small companies and freelancers work in the same space. It’s a great environment for Textcase to get started on the American market. Our office is on Atlantic Avenue in Boston, in the financial district. See a photo gallery of our new office here. In the US, we have already acquired several customers, including a company that captions hundreds of hours of videos weekly in many different languages. Therefore, we are looking for people who are interested in captioning videos (for instance English language videos that need English captions) in a user-friendly online environment on a regular basis. Contact Laura Pepitone...
Translator Reviews

Translator Reviews

Translator reviews are important for any translation agency. The translation business can be a bit messy: anyone can start an agency and anyone can become a translator. Ratings and reviews on websites, therefore, are more important than ever. On the most popular translation community, www.proz.com, translators have rated Textcase over the years and we’re proud to have a 4.8 out of 5 score! See our rating here. The Proz Blueboard has long been the place to go for translators to share their experiences about the agencies they cooperate with. At Textcase, we are looking for close and longterm relationships with translators, editors, copy writers, online marketers and other international communication professionals, even though they may live in faraway countries. Our project managers are connecting everyday with people who are passionate about translation and localization. At Textcase we believe that personal connections are important. Some professionals have been working with our company for more than 15 years – that’s something we’re proud of and we appreciate the dedication of our freelance colleagues to both the translation profession and our...
First weeks in Boston

First weeks in Boston

Exactly two months ago I arrived in Boston to open up Textcase USA. One of the first things I learned after my arrival is how to accept that there are only so many hours in a day. There’s an incredible amount of fun and interesting things to do around Boston, so prioritizing is important. Yet by far the most important lesson for me these past weeks was getting to know the American way of doing business. The journey began, obviously, with a lot of basic administrative tasks: getting my personal immigrant paperwork in order (the famous green card), finding the right office, getting to know my way around, buying a bicycle (of course!), registering our new location with search engines, improving our .com website, setting up a bank account, finding out about legal entities, and much more. The most important thing during these first weeks, however, was learning how to speak the American language of business and social interaction. Harvard Business Review published an insightful article about this last week. Even though I’m married to an American and I lived in the United States as a student, I had never been to Boston and I hadn’t lived in the United States for more than five years. I’m making an effort to observe the ways in which people interact and communicate, and I’m trying to add my own style into the mix. As an existing company, Textcase has to change its ways a little bit in order to connect with American customers – especially in marketing, sales and customer service. Finding the right path isn’t easy, but it will become clearer as we...

Textcase Boston opening March 1st

Translation Agency Textcase will officially open its Boston office on March 1st, 2015. Manager Laura Pepitone will work closely with the existing team in Utrecht, The Netherlands, to manage translation projects for the North American market. A short video pitch summarizes Textcase’s services: The Textcase office will be located on Atlantic Avenue 711 in Boston from March 23rd onwards. Textcase already creates translations for New York City based geomarketing company Yext. Having offices in The Netherlands and Boston will make communications with both translators and customers worldwide even smoother. On top of that, a growing US translation market forms a viable business opportunity. Read more about Laura’s experiences opening the Textcase Boston office or find out more about the translation and localization services that Textcase offers. REQUEST A...
Starting our Business in Boston

Starting our Business in Boston

One of my earliest memories is hearing kids speak foreign languages during summer vacations on the Dutch coast. Most of them spoke German. To me it seemed as if they were communicating in a secret language. Confusion made way for intense curiosity: I hád to decipher their code. Now, some 25 years later, I am setting up a translation office in Boston. Our company’s goal is to connect people worldwide through high quality translations. Technology has done an amazing job bringing people from different cultures together, making it more important than ever to invest in effective international communication. Seth Godin wrote a really great blog about this a few days ago. Every day our team delivers translations that make information available to a new group of people who speak a specific language. Whether it’s literary fiction or a major AdWords campaign, we apply our linguistic talents with the same vigor. Textcase has been around for more than 40 years – we used to be the biggest book translation agency in the Benelux in the 1970s, nowadays we are an allround translation partner to both companies and publishers. We know there is a big market waiting for us in North America. Just a few weeks ago we delivered fully translated, localized and optimized AdWords campaigns in multiple languages for Yext, a company based in New York City and number 20 on the Forbes most promising companies in 2014 list. As Textcase is now operational on both sides of the Atlantic, please keep an eye out for our updates via either our newsletter (sign up below, I promise we won’t spam you)...
Frankfurt Book Fair 2014

Frankfurt Book Fair 2014

Last Saturday, my colleague Koert van der Scheer and I visited the Frankfurt Book Fair – the biggest book fair in the world – in just one day (we caught an early train from Utrecht). We met with content distributers, content producers, people who are developing new content platforms, self-publishers and, of course, publishers. Many countries showed off their best books, from Macedonia to New Zealand and beyond. We loved the positive vibe, the cultural exchanges and we were impressed by the beautiful stands of, for example, Thailand: And this was Iran’s massive stand: There was a lot of activity at Russia’s stand: This year, in contrast to previous years, a bigger section of the Book Fair was reserved for self-publishers. Here are a four self-publishers sharing their experiences with a large, interested crowd: We were amazed by the amount of translation grants made available by national governments. At this moment, we are compiling a list of countries that showed great interest in promoting their authors abroad and supporting this with grant possibilities. It is our goal to actively help publishers and self-publishers finance quality translations. Translation is the best way to spread valuable cultural content and to connect people across linguistic...

My Internship at Textcase: Time Flies

After long days at school and many hours spent huddled over my textbooks, it was finally time to put the knowledge I had acquired to the test and spend my eight-week internship at translation agency Textcase. From the very first time I spoke to Laura, project manager at Textcase, I had a good feeling about the company. Although you always have to wait and see whether your instincts are right, after my first day I was confident that my internship would turn out to be a valuable and positive experience. Premature? Certainly not. I now have only three weeks to go and I have to admit that my time here has flown by. Eight weeks isn’t long by any measure, but if an internship is disappointing, eight weeks can seem to crawl by. My internship with Textcase is the first internship that is directly correlated to my major. And so, I was quite nervous five weeks ago, anxious to see what my time there would bring and whether I would live up to their expectations. Thankfully, the people at Textcase had confidence in my abilities and I was soon entrusted with the responsibility for a number of great assignments. As a project management intern with Textcase, my responsibilities focused on translation quality. This entails approaching translators, having editors check the completed translation and making sure that the translation is delivered to the client in a proper and timely fashion. My college mentor asked me the fair question of whether it never becomes boring to do the same thing every day. I understand how someone who is not involved in...

10 SEO Tips for Website Translations

In a previous blog, I discussed domain name selection when creating a multi-lingual website. This time I will take a closer look at the SEO structure that is required for a successful international website. The ten most important SEO translation tips that should be taken into consideration when translating websites are given below. SEO translation tip 1: Define and translate your principal keywords As a website owner, you have become more than familiar with the importance of the right keywords by now. But what about other languages? Don’t translate your keywords literally, but instead, make sure you know what the most popular search terms are in the country where you are planning to launch your website. A helpful tool is the AdWords keyword planner; use it to check keywords in specific geographic areas and to see potentially interesting alternatives. SEO translation tip 2:  Optimize your keyword density A proper ‘keyword density’ is essential for all websites. Keyword density is the percentage of times a keyword appears on a web page compared to the total number of words on that page. First, define the keywords you want to lead to your site (tip 1) and then make sure that these keywords have a density of between 2% and 5%. No higher and no lower, because Google has penalty filters in place for sites that abuse this strategy. SEO translation tip 3: Translate meta and title tags Meta and title tags remain one of the principal factors for Google in terms of ranking. Make sure that your tags match the content of the page and the page URL. You will miss out...
Textcase Improves Translation Process with MemSource Cloud

Textcase Improves Translation Process with MemSource Cloud

At Textcase, the human factor is always an integral part of translating. Our translators are not only highly qualified, but are also experienced native speakers. Their linguistic expertise, knowledge and intelligence surpass every technological accomplishment in this sector of industry, including MemSource technologies. Nevertheless, the development of translation tools into support systems in the translation process is proving interesting to translation agencies. Translation tools are available in a number of varying versions. New disciplines such as post-editing are becoming mainstream concepts. Last summer, Textcase carried out extensive research into translation tools. There’s a great deal of information available on the internet, of course, but we were invited to spend some time at TAUS  and visited the SDL exhibition among others. We also participated in webinars and hosted a number of account managers. Through these various activities, we discovered that, for Textcase, MemSource provides the most attractive solution for the advancement of our quality and workflow. MemSource, the translation tool of choice for Textcase, offers the possibility of conducting the entire translation process in the cloud. Translators and editors are able to log in via personal accounts. Here, they receive an overview of their assigned tasks and have access to a local- and web-editor. Why MemSource benefits Textcase: • rapid analysis of the word count no matter the format. • clear-cut translation of web file formats without formatting codes. • suggestions from machine translation tool ‘Microsoft with feedback’ can be activated or deactivated. • rapid implementation of repeated terms and fragments. • simple to use for translators and project managers. Textcase has also implemented a translation memory that files by topic and client based on...
Christmas Traditions Around the Globe

Christmas Traditions Around the Globe

In most of the countries that celebrate Christmas, it’s all about gathering with family, friends, and a festive dinner. This is the day we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Although, the way people celebrate Christmas  is not the same everywhere. Differences may be small, but each country has its own customs and cultural traditions during the holiday season. In the Netherlands it’s not common to give many presents because the Dutch celebrate ‘Sinterklaas’ in early December. In the Netherlands and Belgium it’s a custom to draw lots to decide which family member buys a present for whom, also known as Secret Santa. Another tradition which is known in the Netherlands and a few English-speaking countries, is receiving the ‘kerstpakket,’ or Christmas Box.  This box consists of festive food, wine and Christmas gifts. Employees in England receive the Christmas Box on Boxing Day, which is the day after Christmas. The Christmas Box originates from ancient times when it was hard to collect food during the winter. Farmers, who often provided shelter to their staff, gave them a Christmas Box so they could prepare a nice Christmas dinner with their families. In the holiday season, you can visit the German Weihnachtsmärkte. Among the Dutch it is very popular to visit these jolly markets in Cologne, Düsseldorf, Oberhausen and Berlin. Here you can enjoy hot chestnuts, grilled sausages and glühwein while you stroll along the Christmas booths. You might be used to Santa bringing gifts to little children, but you’ll be surprised to see that this does not apply to all cultures. In Italy, the Christmas witch ‘La Befana’ distributes the presents. ...
Modern Translation

Modern Translation

The translation sector has seen substantial growth for years, both in the Netherlands and on an international scope. Globalisation is expected to continue unaffected. Meanwhile, developments in the field of translation tools, apps and free translation services have had an enormous impact on the market. Nevertheless, demand for professional translations clearly remains. Unique, relevant and findable online content is invaluable – underlining the importance of SEO-friendly web texts. Furthermore, visitors to your website are only a click away from a page that may prove even more interesting! The purpose of every text is to attract attention, which means that it is essential that your text sets itself apart from the overwhelming amount of information available on the internet. Conveying unique content in another language has never been more challenging. Awareness of the importance of high quality content among (online) companies has grown and statistics show that they allocate a substantial budget for, and have increased their investments in, translations. As a company or organisation, you strive to get your message across as effectively as possible. But if you don’t get your communication right, you are bound to miss your mark. Engaging the readers of your website is essentially no different than retaining the attention of readers of novels. Another factor to consider is that the fastest growing economies are not necessarily English language markets. In turn, texts often require online localisation in order to be distinctive in that particular language and increase the connection with the reader. The translation sector is moving toward digitalisation and the need for a fully ‘translated’ communication strategy and identity will continue to grow....
Textcase Official Google Partner

Textcase Official Google Partner

As of now, translation agency Textcase is an official Google AdWords certified partner. We earned this title after Textcase employees successfully completed a variety of Google AdWords exams. The translation agency also meets all the qualification conditions that Google requires of its partners. Read this blog and learn more about AdWords, its translation and the role Textcase plays as a Google Partner in this process. What is AdWords? Search Engine Advertising (SEA) is one of the most effective marketing tools currently available to promote your brand, products and services and to generate more online sales. Linking appealing advertising texts to the proper keywords allows you to reach your specific target group. When your company’s target group uses the search engine, an advertisement that corresponds to their query can be listed at the top of the results list or to the right of the results list. Google’s AdWords programme makes this possible. Why translate Adwords? A growing number of companies operate internationally. Findability on the internet for these new markets is crucial. Which is why a properly translated website or web store is no longer sufficient. Careful localisation of an AdWords campaign is indispensable. The relatively small investment in an AdWords translation will allow you to reach a large new specific target group. How Textcase translates AdWords Translating AdWords demands much more than simply converting advertisements and keywords into another language. When Textcase translates AdWords campaigns, cultural differences and particular terminology are taken into account. What keywords do people use in the target language? How should advertisement texts be phrased in order to appeal to customers? For AdWords translations Textcase...
New in the World of Translating

New in the World of Translating

Translation Agency? Come again? Sometimes you find yourself in a world that up to a few weeks before, you were completely oblivious of. The world of translating was like that for me. Of course, I knew that there were countless texts that need translation. Books, websites, business documentation…. The variety is endless. From cookbooks and manuals to schoolbooks and encyclopaedias, it’s clear that the scope of the translation sector is huge.    And yet, I never gave it much thought. How hard can it be to translate a book, right? Then I started my internship at Textcase. I found out how many translations there are, and how complex the translation process really is. Talented professionals who have spent years of studious dedication to become literary translators. Their enormous passion for language. The talent that is needed to capture the spirit of a text, maintain its original tone and feel. How a single word impacts the meaning of a sentence. All these things surprised and intrigued me. The projects are much larger than I thought. The Fifty Shades trilogy, translated by Textcase, consists of three books, each approximately 160,000 words. 160,000 words that needed to be translated while the page-turner appeal of the original was kept in tact. A project spanning three months, with a team of people committed to ensure that everything was right, down to the tiniest details. The raving reviews testify to the success of the project, “a better read than the original’ isn’t a classification that is given easily. Of course, this is the perfect example of huge translations that were successfully completed by a team...
International Translation Day

International Translation Day

What do you love about your language? On International Translation Day we celebrate foreign languages and the importance of people being able to communicate abroad. Our translators, of course, are well aware of this and they can tell you about the benefits of speaking another language. However, we thought it would be nice to devote today’s topic to mother tongues. We’ve asked our communication professionals to share their thoughts, love and appreciation for their mother tongue. Our questions: What is most unique about your language? What is your favorite expression? Why do you love your mother tongue? The love for their language is defined by the small peculiarities and often untranslatable expressions. It makes sense that appreciation for mother tongues is based on the littlest things that make it unique. We’ve gathered our translators’ favorite words, quotes and expressions and concluded that their love is found in the linguistic details. What is most unique… DUTCH: “In Dutch it is the way we are small and influenced by many languages, and still maintain our own identity.” ENGLISH: “For English it’s the way it is omnipresent. Every language in this world has expressions with origins either in English, or “transported” by the English language. The language is therefore richer than any other language and has the ability to reach out. It is not the most beautiful language… I am in love with French…” JAPANESE: “One of the most unique issue is that we use three kinds of letters every day; “Kanji” (Chinese characters) for many nouns, verbs and adjectives, “Hiragana” for particles and etc. and “Katakana” for foreign names and etc.” DUTCH:...

An Olympic Translation

International conflicts are sometimes surrounded by translation problems. The Winter Olympics in Sochi start in February 2014. At the moment, however, pressure on the IOC and Russia is increasing. The Russian government is being criticized for controversial anti-gay laws. It is not clear whether the anti-gay laws will be in effect during the Winter Olympics. IOC President Jacques Rogge first requested more clarity after reading an English translation of the Russian laws. In an attempt to reassure the IOC, The Russian goverment sent Rogge documents. Some parts of that text were too unclear for officials to form an opinion. “This is about a couple of paragraphs – we don’t understand all the details because of probably a difficulty in translation,” said Rogge. “We don’t think it is a fundamental issue, more of a translation issue.” The IOC is currently waiting for more information from the Russian government. “Too many things remain unclear in the text,” said Rogge. Sounds like a challenging job – an Olympic translation – for any translator...

Translating Without Borders

One of the few obstacles to spreading information across the globe is language. Companies target customers but their message stops at the border. Readers enjoy books but most often only if a translation is available in their language. Textcase supports international initiatives spreading literature across cultures and continents. It is our goal to make information available in different countries, addressing readers in their native tongue. Some initiatives in translating without borders: In the United States, we admire the work of Open Letter, literary translations from the University of Rochester. Books from all over the world become available in English. The Translation and Publication Grant Program of Turkey has been successful in promoting Turkish writers abroad. In Germany, the Goethe Institut provides support for non-German publishers to translate German books into other languages. Many countries have a growing number of grant programs and international cooperation is essential. As a professional translation agency we try to keep in touch with them to offer translation services. If we work together, we can bring more of our stories to the other side of the...
Chinese Translation

Chinese Translation

Bridging the gap between companies and people in Asia and Western-Europe, that is our goal. Textcase has a strong network of translators from and to Asian languages, with a special focus on Mandarin Chinese. We are constantly in close contact with translators in both continents, therefore we can find the right translator for the right job. Our team is continuously improving our network of international communication professionals. We are also working to create texts that are as smooth and clear as possible for the reader in the other language and culture. Company documents, marketing materials, websites, webshops, books, e-books and apps are our specialty. Contact us for any services you may need in Chinese...
Textcase Talks Translation

Textcase Talks Translation

Whether you translate Ulysses by James Joyce or Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James, the essence of translation is the same. This was made clear last week to the students of the Editor master program at the University of Amsterdam, where Textcase participated in a panel discussion on the art of translation. Together with Dutch author Renate Dorrestein, translation duo Erik Bindervoet and Robbert-Jan Henkes and director of translations for the Dutch Foundation of Literature Maarten Valken, we spoke about the challenges of translation. Questions included: How close do you stay to the source text? What if you come across mistakes? All speakers agreed that translators face an almost impossible task: making a text accessible to a different language and culture. Small errors can be corrected, but the author’s style remains. Whether it takes 8,5 years for a book translation (Ulysses by Henkes and Bindervoet) or six weeks (Fifty Shades of Grey by...
Textcase Translation of Fifty Shades Sold 1 Million Copies

Textcase Translation of Fifty Shades Sold 1 Million Copies

Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant describes the fascinating world of book deals in one of their articles today. Publisher Prometheus, from Amsterdam, bought the Fifty Shades manuscript for $150.000 in March. When the manuscript landed on our desk for translation, nobody knew that the trilogy would become incredibly successful in Belgium and The Netherlands. The Dutch translation was made within weeks; before the summer and before readers would pick up the English books. With a tight schedule and enthusiastic translators and editors Textcase translated the manuscript in such a way that multiple media outlets in Belgium and The Netherlands say the translation is ‘better than the...
An Evolving Translation and Localization Industry

An Evolving Translation and Localization Industry

The need for content in multiple languages is rising in the business world. Shifts from print to online and mobile are accelerating and technological tools become more diverse and are growing in number. According to Common Sense Advisory the importance of quality content is high because we live in a world of heavy information consumption and sharing everything online. For a significant international organization, to reach your audience effectively, the norm is now shifting from 5 to 10 available languages towards 40 to 50 languages. Overall, good news for Textcase when we heard about many industry trends at the Localization World Conference in Paris earlier this week. To return to our pressing question of last week; this battle is still undecided. However, it seems like in the upcoming years all involved parties will have enough space to survive. The buyers of translation services are also fighting an internal battle. Some marketeers want to use more and more automated translation tools for speed. Engagement with the client, fast communication and acquiring an understanding of the market becomes more and more important. On the other hand, there are the strategic marketeers that are more hung up on the big picture, high quality and carrying out one consistent...
Who Gets Paid for Translation and Localization in 2020?

Who Gets Paid for Translation and Localization in 2020?

Next week, Textcase will be attending the Localization World Conference in Paris. This is a leading three day event focussing on new tools, methods and business practices in the areas of translation, localization and internationalization. The conference rooms, booths and network areas of Palais des congrès de Paris will be crowded with participants from the technology/online sector and our own competitors, the language service providers. The conference program this year is geared towards localization in the medical field, but also booming arenas such as video games and mobile apps. There are sessions discussing Twitter’s organic translation model and lots of attention towards developments in translation automation. At one of the seminars an interesting question is posed: Who gets paid for translation and localization in 2020? Translators. Not the translation companies. Machines. Those who develop the engines. Nobody. It’s free, but paid for through taxes. Google, Baidu, Microsoft, Yandex, Facebook. Paid for through advertising. Nothing changes. LSPs will see their business grow. Other ideas? At Textcase we are obviously hoping for answer five, however to think that nothing will change is unrealistic in our dynamic market. We are ready to adapt as well as pioneer. This upcoming week will be insightful; we will keep you up to...
Translate iTunes U

Translate iTunes U

A few weeks ago, Apple launched an updated version of iTunes U (the ‘U’ stands for University). Hundreds of schools and organizations have since connected to the platform, among which Oxford University, Stanford University and National Geographic. iTunes U is part of the iTunes Store, just like iBooks, where all kinds of study materials – text, video, audio – are publicly accessible. You can get a subscription on a certain topic or course, an option to have each new article automatically downloaded. Today, iTunes U already contains an enormous wealth of high quality information and it’s spreading around the world quickly. Translation of study materials can be extremely relevant for teachers, professors and others who are looking to enrich their curriculum. Textcase is eager to support this trend by converting iTunes U into every thinkable...
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