- By Armando Ezquerra Hasbun © 2017 Depositions can be grueling. Sometimes we deal with hostile parties, long hours without back up, complex subject matters… often made worse by the unwillingness to advance or share information about the case based on the mistaken belief that we...

We don't want our new readers to be left out or our fans to forget nuggets we have shared here before. That's why we periodically republish a few gems. This time, Janis comments on professional behavior, self-awareness and group dynamics. But she does so with...

- Gio Lester© for Proteus, 9/2014 I have always been a curious individual. I recall asking my mom if Jesus was history or legend (got a scolding for that one), and asking my Biology teacher where the first bacteria found RNA to replicate its DNA from...

- By Athena Matilsky There are few things more off-putting than to hear an interpreter fill their delivery with um and uh, second-guess themselves, and interject side commentary. In real-life situations, this sort of delivery makes the listener tune out. On a test, it costs the...

The Couch is back.  This is a space where we can share our doubts, our knowledge and help our colleagues. All data that might make the parties or case identifiable have been removed. Please note: all contributions should be sent to the Editor and not entered in...

We have another Guest Post. This time, our guest is Ryan Bridges a contributing writer and media specialist for the Presentation Training Institute. Ryan regularly produces content for a variety of business and presentation blogs, based around the transitional challenges which comes with communication and...

This article by Janis Palma was first published two years ago, almost to the date. It is a good reminder of the importance of proper terminology and the traps we face in our work - both translators and interpreters!
©Janis Palma- 2014
Beware of false friends! I don’t mean the people, I mean the words. 
One of the first impulses a young interpreter must overcome is the use of words that may, at first glance, seem to be equivalent terms and concepts in two languages... but are not. Taking that direct path from similarly-sounding words in our source and target languages is not always wrong, but part of being a good interpreter is knowing exactly when to take this path and when not to. In the rapid pace of judiciary interpreting, our brains may lean heavily towards cognates in source and target languages. Cognates are words with a common origin or etymology. True cognates, like “library” and “librería” in Spanish or “livraria” in Portuguese, with a common Latin root -- liber -- may come to have new and different meanings with usage and the passage of time. In this example “library” is a place where books are kept for people to read or borrow, whereas “librería” or “livraria” is a place where books are sold. So although they may be true cognates, these words have become false friends, or faux amis.

Okay, perhaps it’s a bit far-fetched to compare a courthouse to Shakespeare’s famous rose, but I have to admit that after months away from court (or, should I say,  du palais de justice…our francophone neighbors certainly have a way with words, don’t they?!) when I...

This post was originally published on The Savvy Newcomer on August 2, 2016. Republished with permission from the author, Helen Eby, NAJIT Member and one of the leaders of our 2017 Advocacy Day efforts. By Helen Eby ©2016 One of my resources is The Routledge Handbook of Interpreting,...