Want to work on translations? Read this first (seriously, read it)


Banned deucer.
So, you want to work on translating Smogon content into a certain language? Well, you better think twice before doing so - it isn't an easy task. There are several things needed before you can actually start working on translating Smogon content. Setsuna and I almost single-handedly translated a bunch of Smogon content into Spanish with the aid of Rockin-X, and it certainly wasn't easy. Read below for some words of wisdom:

Some things you should know before considering doing translations

  • How do you plan to approach translating Smogon content into a particular language? Do you just intend on translating 5 articles and calling it a day, or do you actually plan on translating a significant portion of Smogon's content (ie. ability dex, nature dex, articles, guides, etc.,) into a particular language? It better be the latter, don't think you'll get approval to translate 5 measly articles and nothing else!
  • Who are the people who would constitute your translations team? Do you have a list of people who have agreed to work on translating content with you? Are these people trustworthy and extremely fluent in said language?
  • As Rising_Dusk said here, "You'll eventually need someone with SCMS access and presumably the help of an administrator to get the section for your project made and so forth (I'll take care of this myself when the time comes). You'll also need someone with SCMS access (someone who has a badge,) as they are the only ones able to put content on-site. Everything is written in HTML with the site's css pages loaded, so if you know HTML that's fine. Take a look at his post again to see an example of HTML." Note, the HTML can get more complicated than shown there.
  • Quality matters. Said another way, it is a must for the translators to possess a good command of both the English and *insert language here*. Furthermore, your team would need grammar checkers to make sure there is no awkward stuff in what you submit to the site.
  • Not a question but an affirmation: Commitment is vital. Good work, dedication, organization - it all matters when you plan to contribute to a continuously-in-movement project. You have to be serious about translating and must see your project through start to end.
With those tips aside, let's get into how we'll be going about approving projects and whatnot. Having people randomly post "I'm going to be starting a translation's project, who's with me?" is an extremely messy way of going about starting projects. So, below, I've outlined how things will work around here.


If you're interested in working on translating Smogon content into a particular language, you must send an application to administrator Bloo and moderator Agammemnon stating the intended extent of your project and the names of members who have agreed to participate. The members who you list MUST be able to write in said language on a high level. It is advised to have someone who can HTML your work, as these translations will eventually be put up on-site. "Intended extent of your project" basically means how much do you intend to translate, what sections of Smogon you intend to translate, and so on (again, list the members who have agreed to help). If you are unable to find people willing to help with your project prior to sending me a private message, I will allow you to post a "who's interested in helping me with this project" where people can sign-up to help.

Speaking of "recruiting people to help with a particular translations project," you shouldn't be accepting any single individual that posts expressing their interest to help - how do you know they speak Italian, German, French, or whatever it may be, on a high level? When Setsuna and I ran our Spanish translations project, we tested people interested in helping with the project before accepting them into the Spanish translations team. How did we test them? We had them translate two paragraphs from Smogon into Spanish. We then read over their translation, checking their grammar skills, ability to use proper tenses, and so on. If they demonstrated the ability to translate on a good level, they were accepted. EVERY LEADER OF A PARTICULAR TRANSLATIONS PROJECT SHOULD BE DOING THE SAME THING - TEST PEOPLE'S ABILITY TO SPEAK IN THE LANGUAGE YOU ARE TRANSLATING IN BEFORE LETTING THEM WORK ON TRANSLATING CONTENT. This is absolutely crucial. If you have google translator-translating skills, you shouldn't be working on these translations.

PS: If you are found to be using google translator for these translations, you'll be punished!

Once a project is accepted and the team members are selected, you will be required to make a social group for your project. This social group will be the place where you will organize and do all of your work for your translations, the HTML for your project, and whatever else is necessary. We simply can not have people post a ton of threads in a forum with every single update they make - that is a very messy and inefficient way of doing things. Having people work on their translations in a social group is a much more organized way of going about things. Grammar checks will also be done within these social groups between the members of the project. You may also speak in the language you please in these social groups (remember, only English is allowed on the forums, but you can speak whatever you'd like in social groups!). Once you feel like everything's ready to go, post a thread explaining everything you've done, and link to the social group. I will discuss the content of the work with the project leader, along with others, and if it's determine that everything's ready to go on-site, we'll work on getting it on-site.

If you didn't any understand anything said above, here's a summarized version of how things will be working from here on in:


  1. Send Bloo a PM expressing your interest in working on translating Smogon content into a particular language. If you can provide a list of people VERY FLUENT in the language you're interested in translating content in, that would be great. MAKE SURE TO TEST THEIR ABILITY TO WRITE IN THE PARTICULAR LANGUAGE YOU ARE INTERESTED IN TRANSLATING IN BEFORE PUTTING THEM ON THE TEAM. IT IS ALSO ADVISED TO HAVE SOMEONE FLUENT IN HTML ON YOUR TRANSLATIONS TEAM.
  2. If your project was approved and you were unable to provide a list of people willing to help you with the project, you can post a "sign-up" thread where people can sign-up to help with translations (and HTML). Do NOT let every single user who is interested in translating work on the project. Have them take a "test." The "test" is essentially having everyone interested in helping translate 2 or 3 paragraphs into the language your project is going to be in. The leaders of the project must evaluate these "tests" to determine whether a particular individual can be trusted to properly translate Smogon content with minimal mistakes. If they demonstrate the ability to translate on a high level, accept them. It is the responsibility of the leader of a particular translations project to make sure their members are capable of translating content properly.
  3. Once you have a team of capable translators, the leader of a particular project will do two things: 1) create a social group for your project; this is where you will work on everything. 2) after you finish translating everything you intended on translating, post a thread explaining all the work you've done. Make sure you've grammar checked all your work before posting the thread. If you can have it HTMLed as well before posting said thread, that would be ideal. If the leader of a particular translations project wants to post a single thread for your project before working on translating stuff, you may, but this thread will only serve as an update thread, meaning it will be the place where you periodically update people on the work you've completed; translation work, grammar work, etc, should be done in the social groups.
  4. Once everything is determined to be good to go, people with SCMS access / skills will work on putting your work on-site.
If there are any questions or if anything's unclear, feel free to ask!
I know you wrote not to come and offer help all alone but I think I could be useful since I'm studying in translation from English to French at University. I just started using this site so I don't know if I'm late but if you need help to translate, just let me know.

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