The press is reinventing itself… and learning languages!

press reinvention

There has been a decline in print media in recent years. In spite of successive crises, it is true to say that the media are now adapting to the online world. Publications seem to be finding new forms of economic sustainability (paywalls and online subscriptions, among others) with greater or lesser success.

The Internet has brought new ways of publishing and communicating information. Newspapers are now much more than that, thanks to technology. Print editions (when they still exist) cohabit with their highly dynamic websites and online platforms. News is by the minute and articles are accompanied by videos and interactive content. And so, the ability to reach the whole world means that translations are needed more and more.

Just like today’s television channels, some of the world’s most renowned publications have evolved into multimedia and multilingual platforms. The New York Times has a Spanish version, Germany’s Der Spiegel offers English content for international readers, Spain’s El País can also be read in Catalan, English and Portuguese, and the music and entertainment magazine Rolling Stone has editions in a number of languages.

Machine translation and artificial intelligence are in play here. The renowned French newspaper Le Monde, so far only available in French, has decided to reach more international readerships and launch an English version. With a special touch to make a difference: the English edition of Le Monde will be translated in part by computer-assisted translation.  According to The Guardian, the original articles in French will be translated “by international agencies, with the help of an artificial intelligence tool”, and then post-editing will be done by English-speaking journalists.

The trend is clear. The media have a growing need for localisation services and post-editing to reach the world, and machine translation technologies play an essential role.

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