Lockheed Martin and EADS failing to submit Korean translation for RFP

June 20, 2012 by  
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It was reported on June 19, 2012 that Lockheed Martin which is a F35 manufacturing company and EADS which is a Eurofighter manufacturing company failed to meet the requirements of RFP such as omitting a

As the regulation requires there should be more than two bidders and only Boeing will remain after two companies drop out, they will be given new opportunities.

DAPA will announce the project on the 20th again, and receive the proposal by July 5.

koreaninterpreters.net has been involved in such RFP for a decade.  It usually involves a huge volume of English to Korean translation of hundreds of thousands of words.  Then the final version comes at the last moment, and we are given a humanly impossible deadline.  Although we have a pool of about 40 very qualified translators, we had to work day and night and our chief editors had to stay overnight without sleeping for days, ending up in bleeding nose because we never have enough time to go through all the documents to make them consistent.  Some translators invariably have family emergencies and car breakdowns or computer breakdowns and drop out or send horrible translation, so our editors just keep on proofreading endlessly for days until the job finally leaves to Korea.  Wouldn’t it be nice if they plan ahead and give translators about one year to

translate such a huge volume of documents?  But unfortuantely, the final version always arrives late,

and the schedule is always humanly impossible, even with the best of our translators.

But we are happy to do the job, knowing that our work can help one nation choose the right defense weapons for themselves by promoting accurate translation.  So, Korean defense and the world peace needs the help of Korean translators who can deliver accurate translation.

Korean translator as a blue ocean job

June 20, 2012 by  
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30 years ago when  I first started translating, translation was a hard labor.  You had to look up a

thick dictionary, write on a paper, and then type on a Smith Corona typewriter which was so noisy that

neighbors complained.  Then your printer was so slow it made noise all night.  The technology

developed so much since then, making the job of Korean translator one of the best jobs in the world.

Now you have Microsoft Word, with such amazing functions as Check Grammar and Proofing,

Automatic correction functions which increase the speed of translation.  Trados, although not

limited in its effective use in Korean setting, is another amazing invention for translators.

Emails enable us to receive and send files all over the world in a second.  Naver and Daum provide

amazing sources for translation.  You can look up words in a second, and if those words are so

new that they are not in the dictionary yet, you can search professional articles to find right match.  If

you still cannot find translation, then y0u are the first one to introduce the translation.  Added to all

the above benefits of modern technology is the laser printer which prints so fast and so neatly that

you can work right up to one minute before meeting your client.

All the technological development contributed to translation efficiency.  I started my first job at $6

per page which took me an hour to translate, but now they pay me $100 per page which takes me fifteen

minutes.  You can make up to $2000 a day translating, without any overhang expenses, sitting alone in

your office listening to music or watching your favorite movie.  Isn’t it a dream job?

Another great aspect of the job is that you read and learn new things everyday.  It is different from

being limited to one major field…you can translate law, medical, IT, Engineering, Finance… just about anything, learning so much every time.  Your vocabulary is accumulated like money in the savings account.

And the best part…they can communicate thanks to you.  They say the difference is like night and day because

you translated for them.  Isn’t this the best time to be a Korean translator?

Helpful terms in translating Korean LED patents into English

June 18, 2012 by  
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LED related terms, Korean to English.  This is helpful for translating LED related documents.

* 형광물질 (Fluorescent Material)
- 형광을 내는 물질로서 석유,납유리,시안화백금 등이 있는데,실용적인 것으로는
  ZnS:Cu 라고 기재하는 것으로 주로 브라운관이나 전자현미경 등에 쓰인다. 원료물질과
  첨가해주는 부활제의 조합에 따라 다양하여 목적에 맞게 제조하여 색을 낼수 있다.
  백색 LED구현을 위해 청색 LED에 노란색 형광물질(YAG,Yttrium Aluminum Garnet)을 첨가하는
  방법이 있다.

* MoCVD(Metal Organic Chemical Vapor Deposition,유기금속 화학 증착법)

- 화학반응을 이용하여 기판상에 금속 산화막을 형성하는 박막 형성법. 진공으로 된 통 안에서
  가열된 기판에 증기압이 높은 금속의 유기 화합물 증기를 보내어 그 금속의 막을 기판에 성장시킨
  다. 어떤 조건에서는 화합물 반도체의 결정을 에피택시얼 성장 시킬 수도 있다.

플립칩(Flip Chip)
- LED 발광효율을 개선시키기 위한 특징적인 기술로 플립칩 기술을 들수 있다.
  이 기술은 반도체 칩을 회로 기판에 부착시킬 때 금속 리드(와이어)와 같은 추가적인 연결 구조나
  볼 그리드 어레이(BGA)와 같은 중간 매체를 사용하지 않고, 칩 아랫면의 전극패턴을 이용해 그대로
  융착시키는 방식. 선없는(leadless)반도체라고도 한다.
  패키지가 칩 크기와 같아 소형,경량화에 유리하고 전극 간 거리(피치)를 훨씬 미세하게 할 수 있다.
  일반적으로 질화물 반도체는 절연체인 사파이어 기판 위에 성장하기 때문에 질화물 반도체 표면으로
  부터 광을 추출하게 된다. 그러나 사파이어 기판은 열전도도가 좋지 않아 GaN-LED 열방출에 큰
  문제점으로 지적되어 왔다. 이러한 문제를 해결하기 위하여 전극을 PCB(Printed Circuit Board)
  기판에 패키징하고 사파이어로부터 광을 추출하는 플립칩 기술이 제안되었다. 즉,Ni/Au의
  광 투과성 전극은 로듐(Rh)과 같은 높은 광반사 특성을 갖는 오믹금속으로 대체하여 빛의 리사이클
  (재활용)이 되도록 하여 광추출효율을 개선시키게 되고 전극패드 및 질화물 반도체층을 열방출이
  용이한 PCB보드에 부착함으로서 열방출 효율을 개선시킬수 있다.

* 백색 LED BLU
- 액정표시장치(LCD)의 광원으로 사용되는 부품을 BLU(Back Light Unit)라고 하는데,이는 광원이
  LCD패널의 뒤에 장착됨으로써 유래되었다. BLU는 크게 도광판형(Edge Light Type)과
  직하형(Direct type)으로 나눌수 있다. 그림은 전형적인 백색LED가 사용되는 BLU를 ”백색 LED BLU”
  라 부르고 있으며,현재 핸드폰등 소형 모바일기기의 대부분에 적용 되고 있고,노트북 등
  중형 LCD의 BLU에도 적용되기 시작하고 있어 BLU의 새로운 대한으로 떠오르고 있다.


* 도광판(LGP,Light Guide Plate)
- BLU의 휘도와 균일한 조명 기능을 수행하는 부품. LCD내에서 빛을 액정에 인도하는 BLU안에
  조립되어 있는 아크릴 사출물을 말하며, 백색LED 또는 냉음극 형광램프(CCFL)등의 BLU광원에서
  발사되는 빛을 LCD 전체 면에 균일하게 전달하는 역활을 하는 플라스틱 성형렌즈의 하나이다.

* LED Dirver
- 입력전압변동이 심하고,낮은 전압으로 부터 안정된 밝기 및 높은 효율로 LED를 켜주는 IC를
  말한다. LED가 현재 휴대폰의 적용에서 조명용,네온사인 등으로 활용범위가 넓어져 LED Driver
  IC의 수요는 고성장할 것으로 전망된다.

* 휘도 (Brightness)
- 일정한 넓이를 가진 광원 또는 빛의 반사체 표면의 밝기를 나타내는 양을 말하며
  스틸브(Stilb,기호는 sb) 또는 니트(nit,기호는 nt)라는 단위를 쓴다. 1m(제곱)당 104 cd(칸델라)
  를 1sb로 계산한다. 예를 들면, 태양면의 휘도는 1만 5,000 sb,월면의 휘도는 0.25sb,
  전구 필라멘트의 휘도는 150~200 sb정도이다. 단,같은 광원에서도 촛불과 같이 부분적으로 휘도의
  차가 있는 것도 있으며, 때로는 관찰각도에 따라 그 값이 달라지는 것도 있다.

US-Korea FTA bill withdrawn for translation errors

June 18, 2012 by  
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  A long-delayed free trade agreement between Washington and Seoul faced more troubles  in April 2011, after the South Korean cabinet withdrew a bill for its ratification over translation blunders.

It is the third time this year Seoul has been left embarrassed by mistakes in the Korean text of such a pact after an FTA between South Korea and the European Union has twice been put on hold due to errors.

The government said the South Korea-US agreement will be resubmitted to parliament next month, potentially delaying the process by a few more months.

It faces resistance from the country’s small but powerful farm lobby, which has said the government has done little to provide relief for the expected damage it will suffer due to the pact.

US and South Korean trade negotiators struck a deal in December on the trade pact, which was signed in 2007 but had been held up by US auto and beef industry concerns.

The United States and the European Union are racing against each other to be the first to seal a free trade agreement with South Korea, the world’s 15th largest economy, hoping to get a jump-start on the benefits of increased business deals.

Jenny Park, President of koreaninterpreters.net, reviewed the FTA with her students in Negotiation class while in Seoul, Korea.  She says there were two or three errors on every page and couldn’t believe it was a government document.  “But on the other hand, ” says Jenny.  “Almost all the Korean translations I have edited have errors like that.  It is scary to think that there is such a huge barrier of ‘mistranslation’ between Korea and the rest of the world.  Korea is like an island in terms of language.  Its globalization would be complete only with well trained and competent translators who would not make so many errors in translation.”   Then she added, “and the sad fact is, I have not seen any who don’t.”


Obama committed to South Korea trade deal: Clinton

June 23, 2011 by  
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By Matt Spetalnick

SEOUL | Sat Apr 16, 2011 10:21pm EDT

(Reuters) – U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Sunday that concluding a long-delayed free trade agreement with South Korea was a priority for the Obama administration, and it was committed to getting the deal done this year.

Clinton told a gathering of business leaders in Seoul that, beyond the economic benefits, the pact was “profoundly in America’s strategic interest as well.”

“Getting this done together sends a powerful message that America and Korea are partners for the long-term and that America is fully embracing its role as a Pacific power,” she said.

U.S. and South Korean trade negotiators struck a deal in December on a free trade pact, which was signed in 2007 but had not been ratified for three years because of U.S. auto and beef industry concerns.

Both the U.S. Congress and the South Korean parliament have yet to pass bills to approve the pact, despite U.S. President Barack Obama’s renewed push for ratification.

“I want to state as strongly as I can how committed the Obama Administration is to passing the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement this year,” she told a gathering of business leaders in Seoul during a whirlwind trip through South Korea and Japan.

A U.S. official added that Washington hoped to have the FTA ratified by Congress well before an Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in November.

U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk has previously said the Obama administration wanted to win congressional approval of a free trade agreement before July. The agreement is pending in South Korea’s parliament and is expected to be passed.

Clinton said the pact — which Washington says will increase exports of American goods by $11 billion and create tens of thousands of jobs — is ready for review by Congress.

Sander Levin, the top Democrat on the U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee, last month criticized Republicans for refusing to move ahead on the South Korea deal until the White House sends Congress implementing bills for long-delayed trade agreements with Colombia and Panama.


Republicans broadly support the South Korea deal, but have threatened to block a vote on the pact unless the White House also submits the other two pending trade deals for approval.

“This is a priority for me, for President Obama and for the entire administration,” Clinton said. “We are determined to get it done, and I believe we will.”

The United States and the European Union are racing against each other to be the first to seal a free trade agreement with South Korea, the world’s 15th largest economy, hoping to get a jumpstart on the benefits of increased business deals.

The European Parliament approved a South Korea free-trade deal in February, clearing the way for the EU’s largest bilateral free trade deal to take effect from July.

The shift in focus to Asia follows Clinton’s attendance at a NATO conference in Berlin, where the alliance’s foreign ministers faced strains over a Western air campaign in Libya against forces loyal to Muammar Gaddafi.

Clinton met South Korean President Lee Myung-bak on Sunday, who commended her for Washington’s “exceptional leadership” in handling the situation Libya.

She was due in Tokyo later on Sunday for a flying visit in a show of support following last month’s earthquake and tsunami disasters that killed thousands and crippled a nuclear plant.

(Writing by Jeremy Laurence; Editing by Alex Richardson)

7 Clever Businesses You Could Start By Spring

June 23, 2011 by  
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2:00 AM ET   |
By Jeanette Mulvey, BusinessNewsDaily Managing Editor
Maybe 2011 is the year you’d like to start your own business — but you’re not quite sure yet what it will be. Here are seven hot areas for small businesses that you may not have thought of. The good news for each is there’s lots of room for growth, and you could be prepared to jump in by spring.Medical interpreters

As the number of non-English speakers in the United States who are seeking health care continues to grow, so does the need for medical interpreters who can serve as a liaison between these patients and their doctors.

Medical interpreters have been in short supply, and the demand for them is expected to increase even more, because standards that went into effect Jan. 1 require health care organizations to provide an interpreter for patients who speak limited English.

Even before the new standards were introduced, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted jobs for interpreters and translators would grow by 22 percent over the next decade, faster than for all other occupations.

A nationwide survey of 4,700 doctors, conducted by the nonprofit Center for Studying Health System Change, found that only 55.8 percent of practices with non-English speaking patients provide interpreting services, and 40 percent offer patient-education materials in languages other than English.

Medicaid currently reimburses medical providers for the services of an interpreter. Depending on the state, medical interpreters can make $25 to $50 an hour. In the private sector, they can command upwards of $100 an hour. However, forgoing the services of an interpreter could be even more costly, said Olgierda Furmanek, an associate professor at Wake Forest University who has designed a new graduate-level curriculum in response to this burgeoning career path.

“In a hospital, when there is a language barrier between the patient and the medical professional it slows everything down. Trained medical interpreters bring more efficiency to the overall operation,” Furmanek said. “Without interpreters present, mistakes can happen and they can be costly and tragic.”

In order to be effective, medical interpreters must not only be fluent in a second language but know a great deal of medical terminology, have good memory recall, understand ethics and cultural sensitivities, and be accurate and precise in interpreting and translating medical information. They also must not omit or filter information exchanged between a doctor and a patient.

Beginning this year, Wake Forest will offer an M.A. in Interpreting and Translation Studies with three options for track of study. One is Intercultural Services in Healthcare, which the Winston-Salem, N.C., university says is the first such specialization in the United States; it prepares students for managerial careers in areas of culture-sensitive health care delivery. Another track, Teaching of Interpreting, will be the only one in the Northern Hemisphere educating faculty for college-level interpreting programs.


The ‘Great Invisible Industry’ That Speaks Your Language

June 23, 2011 by  
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Published March 28, 2011

| FOXBusiness

In an increasingly globalized society, knowing more than one language is often a major advantage in the job market. However, being an expert in a language is a highly successful and competitive career in itself. And in times of world tragedy, such as the recent tsunami and earthquakes that ravaged Japan, being a translator gives you something other than money to donate.

Kevin Hendzel, spokesperson for the American Translators Association, said the industry has more than 13.5 million translators and interpreters and has been growing at a rate of 13% annually over the past several years – despite the rough economic backdrop. Today, translators work everywhere from courtrooms to hospitals, tech companies and government, providing a vast array of services.

The industry serves in 180 different languages, Hendzel said. The federal government spends more than $1 billion annually on translator services and state and local governments collectively spend $900 million.

“The industry is much larger than people know,” Hendzel said. “It one of those great invisible industries, and a great enabler of international commerce.”

Aside from being experts in their language, Hendzel said translators also need to be experts in their concentration. He has been a translator of Russian to English for more than 25 years, and works in the nuclear materials field. Typically translators have one dominant language and area of expertise, he said.

“The problem with doing different languages and subjects is there isn’t enough room in your brain,” he said. “They need to have a huge base of knowledge to be successful. It’s harder for kids coming out of school, because they know a lot about a language, but not a lot about the world.”

Being an expert in a specific area, in addition to knowing a language inside and out, helps to differentiate a translator from his or her competition, Hendzel said.

“Doing Spanish translation in the U.S. for example, even if you are very skilled, you have an enormous amount of competition,” he said.

The most in-demand translators are those speaking Arabic languages, when it comes to open government positions, and French, Portuguese, Spanish, Korean, Japanese and Chinese are more in-demand on the technology side of things. Many translators work freelance, earning between $25,000 and $175,000 a year, Hendzel said. United Nations translators are on the higher end of the pay scale, earning between $150,000 and $200,000 a year.

“There is a lot of money out there for translators and interpreters,” he said. “Many people do this as a second career, after doing something else for a long time. This is the only industry that grew through the recession, because globalization continues to accelerate and demand continues to grow.”

Translators also often flock to foreign countries in the aftermath of disasters, like the recent earthquakes and tsunami in Japan. Hendzel estimates there will be more than 10,000 translators and interpreters working in the country due to the recent tragedies.

When the earthquake struck Haiti a little more than a year ago, there were nearly 4,000 translators in the country within 24 hours, he said. Many translators work pro-bono in such cases for different charities or news organizations.

“The community response was quite significant,” Hendzel said of the Haiti situation. “There were less than 2,000 working there in the end, some paid, some volunteer. Haitian Creole and French — it’s a tougher language. Japanese is an entirely different situation.”

Interpreters showing up more often in NH courtrooms

June 23, 2011 by  
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By Jillian Jorgensen jjorgensen@eagletribune.com

June 5, 2011

People expect to see an attorney beside a defendant in a courtroom. But often in New Hampshire courtrooms, there’s another person at the table — an interpreter.

By the end of fiscal year 2011, the financially strapped state court system expects to spend $450,000 on interpreters to help foreign-language speakers understand civil and criminal court proceedings.

“From our perspective, it’s a matter of access to justice,” said Don Goodnow, director of the Administrative Office of the Courts.

It’s also a federal directive, Goodnow said. The Department of Justice requires courts to provide interpreters at hearings and trials in all cases, even if a person can afford their own.

Through early May of the 2010-2011 fiscal year, there have been 1,995 interpreter appointments made through Language Bank. In fiscal year 2009-2010, there were 2,105 interpreter appointments.

“The proceeding we try to conduct cannot be effectively conducted unless you are able to communicate effectively with the prosecutor, and the other attorney, and the judge,” Goodnow said.

The state has a contract with Language Bank, which is under the umbrella of Lutheran Social Services. The court system occasionally uses other interpretation services, if there is a conflict or if Language Bank can’t find an interpreter. The state also uses a different company for American Sign Language interpretation, which can be very expensive, Goodnow said.

Spanish is “overwhelmingly” the most requested language, he said.

In the last four years, interpreters in New Hampshire courts have translated complex legal arguments and verdicts into 40 languages, from Hungarian to Dinka, from Haitian Creole to Maay-Maay, from Swahili to American Sign Language.

Contracting through Language Bank provides a level of expertise that was missing before, Goodnow said, when the court clerks kept their own list of local interpreters. There was no one to verify their qualifications, and the costs were shifting from year to year, he said.

So, they put the job out to bid several years ago, Goodnow said, and have worked with Language Bank since 2006.

Amy Marcildon, director of services for New Americans, said Language Bank works to ensure all interpreters are qualified.

“We do have a quality control component to our program,” Marcildon said. “We have someone who goes out unannounced when people are interpreting to observe their interpreting and make sure they’re following protocol.”

Interpreters can add time to trials

To find interpreters — especially for some of the less common languages — the agency works with colleges and cultural associations, program director Alen Omerbegovic said.

“We try to do our best to help,” he said. “But sometimes, we tell the court we can’t find anybody, we cannot do anything.”

Omerbegovic also is a Bosnian interpreter for Language Bank. Interpreting legal proceedings word for word is no different than other types of translating.

“You have to do simultaneous interpreting instead of consecutive interpreting,” Omerbegovic said.

Translating a lawyer’s questions, a witness’ responses, the interjections of other lawyers and judges as it happens can be tricky — and it takes time. Judges and attorneys are very accommodating, Omerbegovic said.

“We do try to remind people, and judges, and say, ‘Hey, can you just give them a sign to slow down?’” Omerbegovic said.

For the interpreters, the stakes are high to get things right. While the person they are assisting is sometimes facing a simple traffic violation, in some cases the defendant’s future is on the line.

“It’s a challenge,” he said. “You kind of like have a feeling, like there’s a whole life in the play in front of you.”

The language barrier is not only a challenge for the interpreter, it also is difficult for defense attorneys representing foreign-language speakers.

“Trial lawyers are trained in a particular way and the use of an interpreter changes the dynamic of trial,” Exeter defense attorney Richard Samdperil said. “There’s a pace to cross-examination that you can’t get to, you can’t achieve, with an interpreter.”

Everything slows down, Samdperil said, even the interesting parts of a court case.

“Facts that are important sort of need to be presented in a certain way,” he said. “Everything comes out flat and one-dimensional. It affects how the case gets tried.”

It also is logistically difficult. A defense attorney cannot lean over to whisper to his client, or even whisper through an interpreter, who is busy translating whatever else is happening. Scrawled notes obviously don’t work any better, Samdperil added.

The state does not provide interpreters for meetings outside of court hearings. So, if Samdperil wants to talk strategy with a client, he has to hire a different interpreter. That is paid for by the client, unless he or she has a court-appointed attorney.

The entire hearing or trial takes longer with an interpreter, Samdperil said, in a court system already plagued with delays.

“Particularly in New Hampshire these days, time is a precious commodity in terms of getting hours in front of the judge,” he said.

Scheduling can be a challenge

Donald Blaszka, a Derry defense attorney and former assistant county attorney, said finding a time when an interpreter, judge and both lawyers will all be available can be tough.

“It’s very important that the court system needs to accommodate these people, and they do a great job of that,” he said. “I think the more difficult part is becoming scheduling.”

Blaszka said interpreters have a “very thankless and difficult job” of truly interpreting, not summing things up.

Sometimes, family members will say they can interpret a meeting between Blaszka and a client outside court. But in one case with a Spanish speaker, Blaszka, who studied the language in high school and college, noticed the family member wasn’t being exact enough.

“The family member was clearly summing it up, and I told the family member I was going to end the meeting,” Blaszka said. “The family member was summing up instead of doing it word for word or phrase to phrase.”

Blaszka said he has been impressed with the patience of everyone in the court system when it comes to dealing with foreign language speakers. He said he has been seeing more and more people speaking many different languages, and expects the trend to continue.

“They speak Korean, Mandarin and other languages from all over the globe,” Blaszka said, “not just what people think of Spanish or some of the quote-unquote traditional languages.”

Goodnow, with the court system, said with more Spanish speakers and other shifting demographics in New Hampshire, people are likely to continue seeing interpreters in the courtroom.

“If you look at the census figures,” he said, “I think you’ll see we are an increasingly diverse community.”

South Korea – Language, Culture, Customs and Etiquette

June 23, 2011 by  
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Facts and Statistics

Location: Eastern Asia, southern half of the Korean Peninsula bordering the East Sea and the Yellow Sea

Capital: Seoul

Climate: temperate, with rainfall heavier in summer than winter

Population: 48,598,175 (July 2004 est.)

Ethnic Make-up: homogeneous (except for about 20,000 Chinese)

Religions: no affiliation 46%, Christian 26%, Buddhist 26%, Confucianist 1%, other 1%

Government: republic

The Korean Language

The Koreans are one ethnic family speaking one language.  They share certain distinct physical characteristics which differentiate them from other Asian people including the Chinese and the Japanese, and have a strong cultural identity as one ethnic family.
The Korean language is spoken by more than 65 million people living on the peninsula and its outlying islands as well as 5.5 million Koreans living in other parts of the world.  The fact that all Koreans speak and write the same language has been a crucial factor in their strong national identity.  Modern Korea has several different dialects including the standard one used in Seoul and central areas, but they are similar enough that speakers/listeners do not have trouble understanding each other.

Korean Society & Culture

Korean Family Values

. The family is the most important part of Korean life.
. In Confucian tradition, the father is the head of the family and it is his responsibility to provide food, clothing and shelter, and to approve the marriages of family members.
. The eldest son has special duties: first to his parents, then to his brothers from older to younger, then to his sons, then to his wife, and lastly to his daughters.
. Family welfare is much more important than the needs of the individual.
. Members of the family are tied to each other because the actions of one family member reflect on the rest of the family.
. In many cases the family register can trace a family’s history, through male ancestors, for over 500 years.

ConfucianismMap of South Korea

. The teachings of Confucius describe the position of the individual in Korean society.
. It is a system of behaviours and ethics that stress the obligations of people towards one another based upon their relationship.
. The basic tenets are based upon five different relationships: 1) ruler and subject, 2) husband and wife, 3) parents and children, 4)brothers and sisters and 5) friend and friend
. Confucianism stresses duty, loyalty, honour, filial piety, respect for age and seniority, and sincerity.

Korean Ancestors

. Ancestors are based on the male family line.
. Children are raised to believe they can never repay their debt to their parents, hence the popularity of ancestor worship.
. They hold ancestral ceremonies for the previous three generations (parents, grandparents, and great grandparents) several times a year, particularly on Chusok and New Year’s Day.
. On Chusok, people cook and set out food to celebrate their ancestors.

The Concept of Kibun

. Kibun is a word with no literal English translation; the closest terms are pride, face, mood, feelings, or state of mind.
. If you hurt someone’s kibun you hurt their pride, cause them to lose dignity, and lose face. Korean interpersonal relationships operate on the principle of harmony.
. It is important to maintain a peaceful, comfortable atmosphere at all times, even if it means telling a “white lie”.
. Kibun enters into every facet of Korean life.
. It is important to know how to judge the state of someone else’s kibun, how to avoid hurting it, and how to keep your own kibun at the same time.
. In business, a manager’s kibun is damaged if his subordinates do not show proper respect. A subordinate’s kibun is damaged if his manager criticizes him in public.
. Nunchi is the ability to determine another person’s kibun by using the eye.
. Since this is a culture where social harmony is crucial, being able to judge another person’s state of mind is critical to maintain the person’s kibun.
. Nunchi is accomplished by watching body language and listening to the tone of voice as well as what is said.

Etiquette & Customs in South Korea

Meeting Etiquette

. Greetings follow strict rules of protocol.
. Many South Koreans shake hands with expatriates after the bow, thereby blending both cultural styles.
. The person of lower status bows to the person of higher status, yet it is the most senior person who initiates the handshake.
. The person who initiates the bow says, “man-na-suh pan-gop-sumnida”, which means “pleased to meet you.”
. Information about the other person will be given to the person they are being introduced to in advance of the actual meeting.
. Wait to be introduced at a social gathering.
. When you leave a social gathering, say good-bye and bow to each person individually.

Gift Giving EtiquetteEtiquette in Korea

. Gifts express a great deal about a relationship and are always reciprocated.
. It is inconsiderate to give someone an expensive gift if you know that they cannot afford to reciprocate accordingly.
. Bring fruit or good quality chocolates or flowers if invited to a Korean’s home.
. Gifts should be wrapped nicely.
. The number 4 is considered unlucky, so gifts should not be given in multiples of 4.
. Giving 7 of an item is considered lucky.
. Wrap gifts in red or yellow paper, since these are royal colours. Alternatively, use yellow or pink paper since they denote happiness.
. Do not wrap gifts in green, white, or black paper.
. Do not sign a card in red ink.
. Use both hands when offering a gift.
. Gifts are not opened when received.

Dining Etiquette

If you are invited to a South Korean’s house:
. It is common for guests to meet at a common spot and travel together.
. You may arrive up to 30 minutes late without giving offence.
. Remove your shoes before entering the house.
. The hosts greet each guest individually.
. The host pours drinks for the guests in their presence. The hostess does not pour drinks.
. The hosts usually accompany guests to the gate or to their car because they believe that it is insulting to wish your guests farewell indoors.
. Send a thank you note the following day after being invited to dinner.

Table manners

. Wait to be told where to sit. There is often a strict protocol to be followed.
. The eldest are served first.
. The oldest or most senior person is the one who starts the eating process.
. Never point your chopsticks.
. Do not pierce your food with chopsticks.
. Chopsticks should be returned to the table after every few bites and when you drink or stop to speak.
. Do not cross your chopsticks when putting them on the chopstick rest.
. Do not pick up food with your hands. Fruit should be speared with a toothpick.
. Bones and shells should be put on the table or an extra plate.
. Try a little bit of everything. It is acceptable to ask what something is.
. Refuse the first offer of second helpings.
. Finish everything on your plate.
. Indicate you are finished eating by placing your chopsticks on the chopstick rest or on the table. Never place them parallel across your rice bowl.

Business Etiquette and Protocol

Relationships & Communication

. South Koreans prefer to do business with people with whom they have a personal connection.
. It is therefore crucial to be introduced by a third-party.
. Relationships are developed through informal social gatherings that often involve a considerable amount of drinking and eating.
. Individuals who have established mutual trust and respect will work hard to make each other successful.
. South Koreans treat legal documents as memorandums of understanding.
. They view contracts as loosely structured consensus statements that broadly define agreement and leave room for flexibility and adjustment as needed.
. Under no circumstances insult or to criticize in front of others.
. Sensitive matters may often be raised indirectly through the intermediary that first made the introductions.
. South Koreans are extremely direct communicators. They are not averse to asking questions if they do not understand what has been said or need additional clarification.
. This is a culture where “less is more” when communicating. Respond to questions directly and concisely.
. Since there is a tendency to say “yes” to questions so that you do not lose face, the way you phrase a question is crucial. It is better to ask, “When can we expect shipment?” than “Can we expect shipment in 3 weeks?”, since this question requires a direct response.

Business Meeting Etiquette

. Appointments are required and should be made 3 to 4 weeks in advance.
. You should arrive on time for meetings as this demonstrates respect for the person you are meeting.
. The most senior South Korean generally enters the room first.
. It is a good idea to send both an agenda and back-up material including information about your company and client testimonials prior to the meeting.
. The main purpose of the first meeting is to get to know each other.
. Meetings are used to understand a client’s needs and challenges. They lay the foundation for building the relationship.
. Do not remove your jacket unless the most senior South Korean does so.
. Have all written materials available in both English and Korean.

Dress Etiquette

. Business attire is conservative.
. Men should wear dark- coloured, conservative business suits with white shirts.
. Women should dress conservatively and wear subdued colours.
. Men should avoid wearing jewellery other than a watch or a wedding ring.

Business Cards

. Business cards are exchanged after the initial introductions in a highly ritualized manner.
. The way you treat someone’s business card is indicative of the way you will treat the person.
. Have one side of your business card translated into Korean.
. Using both hands, present your business card with the Korean side facing up so that it is readable by the recipient.
. Examine any business card you receive carefully.
. Put the business cards in a business card case or a portfolio.
. Never write on someone’s business card in their presence.

Foreign language skills provide sharp edge in the job market

June 23, 2011 by  
Filed under Interpretation News, Translation News

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By IBTimes Staff Reporter | January 22, 2011 8:00 AM EST

Job seekers with bilingual skills could look forward to a profusion of opportunities in the coming year, according to various reports and company hiring plans. With the globalization of businesses and populations growing increasingly cosmopolitan, the need for transactional knowledge of languages has become very important in both private and government sectors.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment of translators and interpreters in the country is expected to increase by 22 percent between 2008 and 2018. Another book on the employment scenario, Closing America’s Job Gap (W Business Books, January 2011), predicts that For those completely bilingual in Spanish and English, these highly marketable language skills open doors to new careers.

In the US in particular with people of different linguistic origins converging for medical treatment, the need for medical interpreters has grown by leaps and bounds. Consumeraffairs – the news and advocacy portal – also points out that the new standards imposed by the Joint Commission requiring hospitals and health organizations to provide language interpreting and translation services will further boost the demand for personnel fluent in speaking foreign languages.

A big name in the translation and interpreting industry, thebigword has announced that it will be creating 3000 jobs for linguists in 2011. Worldwide, thebigword’s interpreting business, is expected to grow by 150 per cent during 2011, fuelled by major contract wins.

Within the US itself, the company’s expansion rate has touched 20 percent per month. thebigword has identified the government sector as one of the largest areas demanding linguists and interpreters; in an official release the company says that increasingly cosmopolitan populations are driving the need for regional and national Government bodies to communicate in a range of languages in the USA and Britain.

The company has won substantial Government business based on its ability to deliver savings expected to be US$100 million per year.

Strangely however, based on a report by the University of Phoenix Research Institute, the Wall Street Journal reports that while proficiency in languages – especially in Chinese and Spanish – seems to be among the most critical skills likely to be sought by recruiters over the next decade, very few workers had plans to invest in language instruction.

A survey among 419 employers and 511 workers last fall revealed that 42% of employers expected the demand for business proficiency in Chinese to be high among recruiters; 70% said the same of Spanish. However, a majority of workers said that they neither planned to learn Spanish nor attain business knowledge of Chinese in this period.

However, going by the explosive growth in the number of students enrolling in Mandarin and Chinese cultural courses at the school level across the US, the workforce of the future may be better prepared to meet such demand. In fact, as the Congress takes a relook at the No Child Left Behind Act (or the Elementary and Secondary Education Act) language enthusiasts hope that it will pass the $400-million proposed funding for teaching world languages to K-12 students.


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