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Looking for multi-language subtitle authors

 10:14 am on May 4, 2012 (gmt 0)

I'm looking into finding a community of freelance subtitle authors. Im curious about where all the subtitles submitted to subscene, opensubtitles, anysubs, etc come from ?

Is there a community ? Where can I find these people and/or tap into these ressources ?

The reason i'm asking is because I own the rights to around 100 DVDs which i'd like subtitles created for in English, French, German and other major western languages.

Any help is appreciated (I'm aware of the linking policy on this site, so if you could just provide some keywords I could google for, would be much appreciated)


Robert Charlton

 1:52 am on May 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

darkage - I'm not sure whether I'm within the posting policy of this particular forum in suggesting search terms, so I'll try to be general.

The process of adapting DVDs for release in a particular area is called "localization"... and "subtitling" is one possible component of that process. Also, "translation" generally would enter into the kind of subtitling you want done.

If you search for combinations of the above terms and their variants (eg, translation, translating, translators, etc), along with DVD or BluRay, you'll most probably identify companies, but not likely individuals, who performs these services. These are going to be harder to find.

("SRT", which you'd mentioned in your original post title, is generally too specialized a search term to use to identify the people or communities of people doing this.)

Most large cities or metro-areas with film production communities generally have "production directories", which might be further modified by words like film, video, TV, or creative, along with a placename, to locate them. You'll then need some good luck and persistence in drilling down to translation or multi-lingual services, or however they're described. It varies a lot. It's likely to be rare that you'll find individual translators listed.... most likely just companies who hire them.

I'm going to risk getting too specific for posting guidelines (but in the motion picture and TV commercial world, this is almost like saying Yahoo or Google)... and I'll mention the LA 411 Production Directory in the Los Angeles area and The Reel Directory in Northern California. There's also a 411 guide for New York. There may be other directories in Los Angeles. I'm not familiar with other cities.

Online freelance sites may also contain categories for people who are appropriate. I would not hire just any translators to do subtitles, btw, as there's quite of bit of craft and nuance involved.

Various language combinations of course may change the outlook of the above entirely.


 4:52 am on May 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

Look around ( search for ) some of the old threads here on translation too ( they usually take / took place in the "content and copyright" forum ), a little reading may help you to avoid some "gotchas"..you can't spot an error in translation if you don't speak the original and the "target" language yourself fluently..

You might also want to look into "voice overs" and "dubbing"..subtitles are frequently less effective than either of those, for subjects with more than a very small amount of spoken audio..

"Back in the day" many countries had "dead tree" trade directories for such services..with paid ads and subscriptions..for film, video, ads etc..


 5:45 pm on May 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

thank for the replies. Allow me to provide more details.

The subtitles are to provided "as-is" for free together with my DVDs, when purchased.

I'm therefore particularly interested in freelancers similarly to those who submit to subtitle directories (eg opensubtitles, subscene, etc).

I assume these freelancers will (due to not being professional, but having experience with creating subtitles) be more according to my budget.

Robert Charlton

 6:36 pm on May 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

Ahh, I understand. As I started thinking about the possible number of translations involved, I didn't see how your project would scale without a large budget. A lot of material probably never achieves distribution for this reason.

The sites you mention appear to be subtitle sharing directories, providing downloads for DivX movies, etc. It makes sense that such communities would spring up. Conceivably, you could research followers in the twitter networks of those sites you mention, check out their backlinks, and try to search within those sites and communities.

Also, use some of the vocabulary that they use to describe themselves (eg, "DivX"). I see now why you'd mentioned SRT. Within a specialized community, you can get more specialized in your vocabulary. I think I'd be wary of malware.


 7:49 pm on May 5, 2012 (gmt 0)

IIWY..I'd go looking using a "live" linux disc..for the reason(s) that Robert has alluded to..

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