The Argentine football club Independiente used an automatic translation software to translate footballer Bryan Cabeza’s transfer contract, but mistakes made by the translation software caused the transfer to fall through.
Independiente were seeking to re-sign 20 year-old Ecuadorian Cabezas from Atalanta of Italy. He had previously played at Independiente, then transferred to Atalanta in 2016. After a loan period in Greece at Panathanaikos, Independiente decided to get Cabezas back on loan until June. They wrote up the contract, ran it through a machine translation software (oh dear…) and sent it over to Italy.
Unfortunately this kind of translation software just cannot provide the same level of translation as a human translator. Errors are common, and in this case it apparently translated Bryan Cabezas’ surname as “Bryan Heads”, as “cabeza” in Spanish means “head”. This invalidated the contract, which meant that Cabezas had to stay at Atalanta, and Independiente missed out on signing him.
Using automatic (machine) translation can seem like a quick and easy solution to your translation needs. And cheap, or even free… but the results can be costly, as in this case. Don’t risk your contracts being invalidated – commission a reliable and professional translation agency to do the work properly.
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