Resources

Guidelines on the use of translations for Museums, Galleries and cultural institutions

A translation of intellectual property has status as a creative work and is protected by copyright.

As established by the Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works, Article 2, Section 3: “Translations, adaptations, arrangements of music and other alterations of a literary or artistic work shall be protected as original works without prejudice to the copyright in the original work.”

Navigating copyright can be a minefield, and sensitive and appropriate use of translations is not always intuitive; each case is unique. The International Federation of Translators (FIT) and The Institute of Translation and Interpreting (ITI) have put together some guidelines to help cultural institutions who may use translated texts understand, at a glance, the best way to approach the use of translations.

The first step? Contact the translator, as a courtesy. It’s always good to be sure the translator is aware and part of the discussion, even if they don’t hold the copyright. In the event they don’t hold the copyright themselves, they will be able to tell you who does.

Download the guidelines here

The Atlas of Translation and Literature

A new resource for literary translators: The Atlas of Translation and Literature. You can take part in building a new resource for lovers of literature and translation. This interactive map of the world includes geolocation of events connected with translation and literature and relevant to those working in the industry. The aim of the map is not to describe the events in detail or to provide in-depth information about them, but to locate them geographically, offering an overview for professionals looking for information.

Add your events to the map via the link: ATL FORM

Share the link with organisations and bodies in your country or region who organise events connected with literary translation: translation awards, literary fairs, ongoing conferences, residencies for writers and translators, training programmes aimed at the industry

The Atlas is a proud collaboration between The International Federation of Translators (FIT) and its Translating for Publishing Houses and Copyright Standing Committee, the Association of Professional Translators and Interpreters of Catalonia (APTIC), the European Council of Literary Translators’ Associations (CEATL), Barcelona City of Literature and the Institut Ramon Llull.

If you have any queries, please write to secretaria@aptic.cat

Conflict Zone Field Guide for Civilian Translators/Interpreters and Users of Their Services

FIT in partnership with Red T and the International Association of Conference Interpreters (AIIC), has drafted a Conflict Zone Field Guide for Civilian Translators/Interpreters and Users of Their Services. This document outlines the basic rights, responsibilities, and practices recommended by the three organizations. It applies to translators and interpreters serving as field linguists for the armed forces, journalists, NGOs and other organizations in conflict zones and other high-risk settings.

Brochure for Translation and Interpreting Buyers: Getting it Right

Interpreting: Getting It Right

Many buyers aren’t even sure they need a professional interpreter, especially if they know someone who seems to be bilingual and is willing to help out.
Red alert: working with amateurs or no interpreter at all can lead to serious risks for you and your business. Interpreting, Getting it Right is a brochure that explains the where, why, and how of purchasing professional interpreting services a quick read offering practical, hands-on information for language service consumers.

Other languages: Many FIT member associations have translated these guides and published them on their websites.

Translation: Getting It Right

English

There are hundreds of ways a translation project can go off track: ridiculous deadlines, misapplied machine translation, poor project management, unqualified suppliers, and much more. If you’re a first-time buyer, you are often flying blind.
Translation, Getting it Right is a handy brochure full of concrete tips to help you get the most out of your budget and get a translation that works. It’s available in a number of languages.

Other languages: Brazilian Portuguese :: Catalan :: German. Many FIT member associations have translated these guides and published them on their websites.

FIT Database of Training Institutions

FIT Database of Training Institutions for Latin America and other parts of the world. Last updated June 2020.

Other Resources

2020: ISO 17100 – FAQS for freelance translators

2015: PEN Club : The Quebec Declaration on Literary Translation and Translators (2015)

2012: Overall costs of non-quality in translation – A report from the European Commission

1963, updated1994: FIT Translator’s Charter

Open Letters

Translators and interpreters have been increasingly subject to unjust persecution, prosecution and imprisonment in countries across the world. To publicise and combat this critical state of affairs, the International Federation of Translators (FIT), the International Association of Conference Interpreters (AIIC) and Red T, later joined by the International Association of Professional Translators and Interpreters (IAPTI), launched an Open Letter Project in mid-2012.

Its objective is to advocate on behalf of these embattled linguists by researching their individual cases and sending letters of appeal to the appropriate authorities.

We encourage you to join our project by writing a letter of your own. Every voice matters! The project began with letters relating to the cases of imprisoned Iranian translators and writers and later extended to local linguists working for foreign forces in conflict areas, particularly their situation when the foreign forces withdraw. Efforts have been made to publicise the letters and alert the media to them, helping to put pressure on governments to ensure the long-term safety of linguists who served their troops.

Below you will find open letters sent to the governments of various countries around the world.

Open Letter to Ministers of the Federal Republic of Germany regarding campaign for the protection of Translators and Interpreters working in Conflict Zones – August 2022

Statement from the International Federation of Translators (FIT) concerning the imprisonment of a translator in Belarus – February 2021

Open Letter to Prime Minister of Australia Scott Morrison Regarding a Humanitarian Promise – February 2020

Open Letter to Chancellor of the Republic of Germany Angela Merkel with a Plea to Provide a Safe Haven – July 2019

Open Letter to the UN Secretary-General seeking a UN Resolution to Protect Civilian Translators/Interpreters in Conflict Situations – May 2019

Open Letter to President of the Republic of France on Afghan interpreters – August 2017

Open Letter to the Canadian Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship – August 2016

Open Letter to US Congress – May 2016

Open Letter to Prime Minister Tsipras of Greece on Protective Asylum for Afghan Interpreters – October 2015

Open Letter to the President of the Republic of Turkey on behalf of Mohammed Ismael Rasool – September 2015

Open Letter to His Holiness Pope Francis for protecting translators and interpreters at risk – June 2015

Open Letter in support of Danish translators’ associations – January 2015

Open Letter in solidarity with the victims of the attacks on Charlie Hebdo – January 2015

Open Letter to the Prime Minister of The Netherlands on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the Polish Armed Forces – September 2014

Open Letter to the President of the Republic of Poland on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the Polish Armed Forces – July 2014

Open letter to the Spanish Minister of Defence on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the Spanish Armed Forces – September 2013

Open Letter to the Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the German Armed Forces –
June 2013

Open Letter to the Prime Minister of France on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the French Armed Forces – June 2013

Open Letter to the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the British Armed Forces – June 2013

Open Letter to the Prime Minister of Denmark on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the Danish Armed Forces – May 2013

Open Letter to the Prime Minister of Sweden on behalf of Afghan conflict zone linguists affiliated with the Swedish Armed Forces – April 2013

Open Letter to the United States Secretary of Homeland Security on behalf of Afghan and Iraqi conflict zone linguists – February 2013

Open Letter to the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran on behalf of Iranian translator Manijeh Najm Araghi – August 2012.

This letter was also sent out in Farsi, addressed to Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Khamenei, Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Sadeqh Larijani, Head of Judiciary, and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Our thanks go to Eriksen Translations Inc. for generously providing the Farsi translations.

Open Letter  to the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran on behalf of Iranian literary translator Mohammad Soleimani Nia – May 2012.

This letter was also sent out in Farsi, addressed to Ayatollah Sayyid Ali Khamenei, Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Sadeqh Larijani, Head of Judiciary, and President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Our thanks go to Eriksen Translations Inc. for generously providing the Farsi translations.. Update: In late May 2012, Mohammad Soleimani Nia was released on bail. A few weeks later, he responded to a summons by authorities to pick up his personal property and was reportedly rearrested.

Position and Discussion Papers

FIT Position Paper on Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

July 2022

FIT Position Paper on Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

FIT, the voice of associations of translators, terminologists and interpreters around the world, wishes to state its position on Continuing Professional Development (CPD). This paper is aimed not only at the FIT associations and their individual members but also at a wider readership.

FIT Position Paper on Educating the Next Generation of Translators

April 2022

FIT Position Paper on Educating the Next Generation of Translators

FIT, the global organisation representing associations of translators, terminologists and interpreters, sees a need to state its position on educating the next generation of translators, while drawing attention to various questions that should be taken into account.

FIT Position Paper on Translation, Localisation and Transcreation

January 2022

FIT Position Paper on Translation, Localisation and Transcreation

The language industry differentiates between translation, localisation and transcreation as distinct activities. Nevertheless, many professional translators are engaged in localisation and transcreation projects, which raises the question of the role of translation in these multilingual language services. The purpose of this paper is to provide an answer to this question from the perspective of FIT, as the representative of professional translators on the world stage.

FIT Position Paper on Post-Editing

May 2021

FIT Position Paper on Post-Editing

FIT, as the voice of associations of translators, terminologists and interpreters around the world, would like to provide information on post-editing and draw attention to some of the risks and consequences.

FIT Position Paper on the Role of FIT

May 2020

FIT Position Paper on the Role of FIT

The International Federation of Translators (FIT) unites over 130 professional associations, training institutes and research centres worldwide, thus representing more than 85,000 translators, terminologists and interpreters in some 55 countries. On the basis of this strong position, FIT is able to play a significant role in the translation, terminology and interpreting sector and, beyond that, in society as a whole.

FIT Position Paper on Machine Translation

August 2019 (updated)

FIT Position Paper on Machine Translation
Machine Translation: 10 questions and answers

Machine Translation (MT), i.e. fully automatic translation using computers, which is viewed by some as the solution for obtaining more or less satisfactory translations quickly and cheaply, has been gaining considerable ground in recent times. FIT, as the voice of associations of translators, terminologists and interpreters around the world, would therefore like to provide some information on this subject and draw attention to diverse consequences for the users as well as professional translators and their associations.

FIT Discussion Paper on Remote Interpreting

June 2019

FIT, the voice of associations of translators, terminologists and interpreters around the world, would like to encourage a discussion on remote interpreting because of the numerous challenges posed by this form of interpreting.

Remote interpreting (RI), which is also known as distance interpreting, means that the interpreter is not in the same room as the speaker and/or the audience. There are various types of RI, depending on the equipment and type of connection used (video over internet or audio over internet or telephone). Consequently, in some cases the interpreter can see the speaker and possibly the audience on a screen; in others, the interpreter is unable to see either.

FIT Position Paper on International Standards

June 2017

FIT Position Paper on International Standards

FIT, the voice of associations of translators, interpreters and terminologists around the world, sees a need to state its position on international standards relating to those professions.

Standards in this context can be defined as a set of rules or guidelines aimed at harmonisation. Their application is not required by law, but a growing number of clients are demanding that translators and interpreters work in compliance with the standards and thus conform to the rules laid down in them.

FIT Position Paper on Relations between Freelancers and Translation Companies

June 2017

FIT Position Paper on Relations between Freelancers and Translation Companies

FIT, the voice of associations of translators, interpreters and terminologists around the world, sees a need to state its position on the relationship between freelance translators and translation companies.
In addition to serving direct clients, freelance translators may choose to collaborate with reputable translation companies, be they single or multi-language vendors (SLVs or MLVs). Provided that this collaboration is based on fair, precisely defined terms and conditions, it may offer certain advantages for both sides.

FIT Position Paper on the Future of Professional Translators

April 2017

FIT position paper on the Future of professional translators

What does the future hold for professional translators? FIT, as the voice of associations representing those professionals around the world, would like to draw attention to actual or conceivable developments and indicate what actions are recommendable.

FIT Position Paper on Crowdsourcing of Translation Services

August 2016

FIT Position Paper on Crowdsourcing of Translation Services
Crowdsourcing of Translation Services: Questions and Answers

In recent years, crowdsourcing has been an increasingly widespread phenomenon in the translation sector. FIT, as the voice of associations of translators, interpreters and terminologists around the world, would therefore like to provide some information on this subject and draw attention to diverse consequences for the users of translation services as well as professional translators and their associations.

FIT Position Paper on Internships

August 2016

FIT Position Paper on Internships

FIT, the voice of associations of translators, interpreters and terminologists around the world, sees a strong need to state its position on internships relating to those professions.

Internships come in many different forms. Basically they enable interns (students in secondary or higher education or postgraduates) to gain work experience in white-collar and professional careers at companies or institutions. Legislation on internships varies from one country to another, often with a distinction being made between for-profit and non-profit organisations.

FIT Position Paper on Machine Translation

August 2016. Updated version was published in August 2019.

FIT Position Paper on Machine Translation
Machine Translation: 10 questions and answers

Machine Translation (MT), i.e. fully automatic translation using computers, which is viewed by some as the solution for obtaining more or less satisfactory translations quickly and cheaply, has been gaining considerable ground in recent times. FIT, as the voice of associations of translators, interpreters and terminologists around the world, would like to provide some information on this subject and draw attention to diverse consequences for the users as well as professional translators and their associations.

Resolution on translators and interpreters in conflict zones

August 2014

Resolution on translators and interpreters in conflict zones

With great concern the participants at the 2014 FIT Statutory Congress also considered the situation of those colleagues who undertake their work in conflict zones all over the world.

Babel

Babel (benjamins.com/catalog/babel) is a scholarly journal designed primarily for translators, interpreters and terminologists (T&I), yet of interest also for non-specialists concerned with current issues and events in the field.

The scope of Babel is intentional and embraces a multitude of disciplines built on the following pillars: T&I theory, practice, pedagogy, technology, history, sociology, and terminology management. Another important segment of this journal includes articles on the development and evolution of the T&I professions: new disciplines, growth, recognition, Codes of Ethics, protection, and prospects.

The creation of Babel was proposed on the initiative of Pierre-François Caillé, founding president of the Fédération Internationale des Traducteurs (FIT) and approved by the first FIT Congress of 1954 in Paris. Babel continues to be published for FIT and each issue contains a section dedicated to THE LIFE OF FIT.

Articles for Babel are normally published in English or French but we also accept articles in Arabic, Chinese, German, Italian, Russian and Spanish.

Publication Details: ISSN 0521-9744 | E-ISSN 1569-9668. Visit benjamins.com/catalog/babel for publications

Publications

  • Translatio - Catch up on FIT's latest news in Translatio.
  • Resources - Conflict Zone Field Guide for Civilian Translators/Interpreters and Users of Their Services, Brochure for Translation and Interpreting Buyers: Getting it Right, Other Resources
  • Open Letters - Translators and interpreters have been increasingly subject to unjust persecution, prosecution and imprisonment in countries across the world. To publicise and combat this critical state of affairs, the International Federation of Translators (FIT), the International Association of Conference Interpreters (AIIC) and Red T, later joined by the International Association of Professional Translators and Interpreters (IAPTI), launched an Open Letter Project in mid-2012.
  • Position and Discussion Papers - Position and Discussion Papers.
  • Babel - Babel is a scholarly publication presenting articles from all round the world. It is published quarterly.