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Shining a spotlight on translations and our translator teams

Posted on 23 June 2020 by BaerbelW

Even though Skeptical Science's "lingua franca" is English we do have a lot of content translated into more than 20 languages and anybody can get involved with translations as I explained in a blog post in 2014. A lot of the translation work tends to fly under the radar and in order to change this, I'll use this blog post to highlight currently active translator teams as well as some recent translation projects we've been tackling.

TranslatorsCurrently active translators for Portuguese (PT), German (DE), Russian (RU), Hebrew (HE) and Indonesian (ID)

Our most consistently active translator team, which has been working together for many years, is located in Brazil and tackles translations into Portuguese. If you look closely at the flags in the header banner you'll see that we use the Brazilian flag for those translations as at least a small kudo to our dedicated and growing team there.

Starting in 2019 many rebuttal translations into Hebrew have been created by a team from Israel including students from an introduction to climate course. If you check the overview page for these translations carefully, you'll see that the columns for "fact" and "myth" in the table have been (recently) reversed as Hebrew is a language read from right to left, so it made sense to adapt this page accordingly.


Several rebuttal translations into Russian were created in 2019 by a new team who had contacted us from there. We've also regularly been adding translations into German many of which were for blog posts and several rebuttal translations were either created or updated.

But, it's not just our own content like rebuttals and blog posts which gets translated or where we coordinate translation activities for. Several handbooks have also been translated into other languages with help and input from our teams - here are the two latest additions:


The Conspiracy Theory Handbook - 2020

German - Bärbel Winkler, Silke Schäfer, Annette Theißen, Timo Lubitz and Alois Erwin Mair

Portuguese - Dayane Machado, Minéya Fantim, Aldo Fernandes, Claudia Groposo and Luciano Marquetto

Spanish - Carlos Romero, Diego León Román Rodríguez, Liliana Ruvalcaba

More translations are in the making!


The Consensus Handbook - 2019
John Cook, Sander van der Linden, Ed Maibach and Stephan Lewandowsky

German - Bärbel Winkler, Timo Lubitz und Thomas Traill

Portuguese - Claudia Groposo, Déborah Danowski and Luciano Marquetto

Publishing these translated versions of the handbooks wouldn't be possible without the ongoing help from Wendy Cook who thankfully does the rather tedious task of copying  the prepared translations into the layouts she created for the handbooks.

Earlier translation projects include The Scientific Guide to Global Warming Skepticism (18 languages, but by now "somewhat" outdated as it was first published in 2010), The Debunking Handbook (published in 2011 with 12 translations) and Climate Outreach's The Uncertainty Handbook (published in 2016 with the initial 3 translations done by our teams and five by others).


Our thus far most creative translation project is the FLICC-poster we created in collaboration with our German partner site! As explained in the accompanying blog post this one started out as a German poster and the English version was the first translation completed. Translations into Dutch, Hungarian, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish are currently in the works. Will be interesting to see how many different depictions we'll end up with for what is called "Cherry Picking" in English!


The next most likely big translation project will come our way once the Cranky Uncle app becomes available in English. As our crowdfunding was succesfully completed in January, we do have the funds for the coding of the multi-lingual version available but we'll rely on volunteers from across the globe to create the actual translations.


If you'd like to help with this or any of the other translation activities, please fill out this short Google form and then let us know via the contact form (selecting "enquiry about translations") that you are interested. We’ll then get in touch with you to let you know about the details and next steps.

Last but certainly not least a very big "Thank You" to everybody who contributes to the translations on Skeptical Science! The translations have become an integral part of our website and with the many offerings you create they help to increase our reach across the globe.

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  1. Hats off to our translators!

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