Global agricultural networking

Twitter plus Google Translate offers amazing opportunities for global networking.  It’s fabulous for business reasons – spreading ideas and innovation around the planet in seconds and creating a fantastic rural travel network for in-person encounters.  Online networking is especially beneficial for rural and remote residents, being less likely to network in person at events and often feeling a great affinity with rural residents of other countries, due to shared interests and values.  Australian farmers have much to gain from connecting with counterparts living with similar environmental conditions, such as South American countries.  And language difference barriers are increasingly being overcome, thanks to Google Translate and other digital translation services.

Tips on making it easier for non-English speakers to understand what you’ve written:

  1. Give preference to simple/common words; as they’re more likely to be translated accurately.
  2. The following isn’t translated by Google Translate so are best avoided (although most are very useful to condense Twitter messages and bios):
  • Acronyms
  • Abbreviations
  • Symbols (some have universal meaning, but many do not. Consider which are globally understood.)
  • Words that have a hashtag in front of them

I dream of a future in which people who don’t share the same language can get together and have an almost instant conversation, by using a device which accurately translates from one language to another, verbally.  Technology and software are improving all the time – however there are still glitches. Eg because English speakers typically use an adjective then a noun and some other languages say the noun then the adjective (eg English: a black car; French: a car black) there are many word order errors as well as wrong tense etc used.

Some would prefer to see the whole world speak the one language, but this would be a great tragedy; taking away regionally specific words and expressions which have developed over the eons for good reason, and reducing character and culture to ashes.

The main translation problem will continue to be the fact that translation services, worldwide, are provided by capital city residents for capital city residents.  So agricultural terms and expressions and rural and regional colloquialisms are not translated at all, or very innaccurately. I first encountered this worldwide problem when collating information for my rural translation website pages, many years ago.

I highly recommend that Australian farmers and livestock owners on Twitter who would like to have conversations with farmers in countries such as Brazil and Argentina, increase the accuracy of translations by slightly altering the way messages are written.

Follow @Agri_Events on Twitter if you are interested in seeing messages from interesting agricultural events all around the world.  Be warned, though – following this Twitter account will make you want to travel.

If you would like to have an adventure of a lifetime on a farm tour overseas, details can be found on other blog pages, eg: the 2018 Ireland & UK farm tour.

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