Consistency in Multilingual Content: Using Style Guides

Dec 10, 2015

Just like a human being posesses personality and body language, every company has also developed its unique language and style of communication. But to spread a consistent message and the same "feeling" about your company in global terms, you also need to define your company language and transfer its details and nuances into a clear set of rules.

What should your style guide cover

The rules, or Style Guides for translation, should describe the following:

  • Term use (incl. forbidden terms)
  • Locale issues (such as digit grouping and number formats in general, punctuation, tense, spelling, abbreviations, etc.),
  • Authoring issues,
  • How to address the reader,
  • and others.

When we are receiving translation orders at idioma, we always encourage our clients to submit their Style Guides whenever available. Style Guides ensure that your company language gets preserved even though your content is translated by different translators all over the globe. You do not need to worry about problems with localization, inaccurate translation and cost spinaway.

In addition to a style guide, reference material for projects you order are also beneficial and will assure even greater adherence to how your company communicate with customers.

Don't have your own style guide?

Now you may wonder, what to do if you want to achieve consistent multilingual content, but you do not yet have your own translation style guide or the means to create one. Language services providers should be ready for such eventuality. For instance, idioma's TMS platform iQube is loaded with standard locale settings for the languages we work in, which are used as default style guides for accounts where we have not received any instructions or style guide from the client. Once used, style guides become an essential part of your translation process at virtually every stage of it. Our clients receive this Style Guide as a viewable PDF upon request.

With this muster in your hand, you can indicate any changes and further adaptation of the style guide according to your company needs and thus achieve consistency in your global multilingual content for your brand.

To learn more about style guides, please contact our project managers.

Language facts: Turkish

Dec 3, 2015

Turkish is predominantly used in Turkey and Cyprus. It has approximately 63 million speakers many of which can also be found in Greece, Bulgaria and other parts of Eastern Europe. Modern Turkish language has been highly influenced by Ottoman Turkish and has expanded as the Ottoman Empire grew. Turkish is also spoken by several million immigrants in Western Europe, mainly Germany, where a major Turkish diaspora exists.

Not so common language family

Turkish belongs to Turkic language family (as its most significant representative), namely to the group of Oghuz languages. Oghuz Turkic languages – such as Azerbaijani, Turkmen, Qashqai, or Gagauz – are characteristic with a high degree of mutual intelligibility.

Some features of Turkish language, such as lack of genders in grammar, no noun classes, vowel harmony, or agglutination (the process in which complex words are comprised of combining various morphemes in a string) are common throughout the entire Turkic language family. Turkish also features a considerable amount of loanwords from Arabic and Persian, due to the adoption of Islam by Ottoman ancestors, the Seljuq Turks. In fact, the Ottoman Turkish was a blend of Turkish, Arabic and Persian (not really compatible with today's Turkish).

"Republican" language reform

The establishment of Modern Turkish language in everyday use resulted from the foundation of the Republic of Turkey and was strongly supported by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk (interesting fact: "Atatürk" is not a real surname of the first Turkish president, but an honorary title that directly means "father of all Turks". Turkish parliament even banned the name to be used in connection with any other person – by law). As the Ottoman language (that was used as administrative language of the empire) consisted of too many loanwords of Persian and Arabic origin, the aim of the language reform was to replace these terms with original Turkish expressions. It's quite funny though that Atatürk himself often used Ottoman terms in his speeches, which resulted in his 1927 speech to the new Parliament being repeatedly translated into Modern Turkish to make it comprehensible to younger generations.


In 1928, as a result of Atatürk's reform, the original Ottoman script was replaced with a phonetic variant of the Latin alphabet, but with some additions.


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