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General Discussion Theres a Clannad of AIR-headed Kanon fodder being shot by the Little Busters After Tomoyo on a Planet-arian.

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  #16  
Old 2008-05-30, 19:38
GreatSaintLouis GreatSaintLouis is offline
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Originally Posted by Asceai View Post
The rest of gp32's post was utterly unnecessary, redundant and pretty mean-spirited.
How so? It's 'fans' that advocate downloading games if they happen to be difficult to get ahold of outside of Japan, under the pretense that getting a hold of a title no matter what makes one a 'fan'. The 'fan' production process in most cases involves premature project announcements, subpar editing, missed release estimates, and drama with the rest of the community when the translations don't proceed as smoothly as the rest of the 'fans' would like. The 'fans' will translate a title without contacting the original authors for permission and without making sure that their translation is the best possible representation of the original work in English. Was the comment truly unnessicary, redundant, and mean-sprited, or was it simply true?

Insani has always been about a more professional production process than most translation groups, preferring simply to deliver on well-done titles rather than be hassled by impatient groupies for months because they've prematurely announced a translation that may not ever be finished. As of a|together a few years ago, insani became quite concerned with the idea of not only translating a work but doing so in a way that shows respect to both the work and the original author by not only asking permission to translate the title but working closely with the author to ensure that the game is as true to its Japanese original. Insani is not a commercial group by any means, but that doesn't keep them from aspiring to professionalism. "Hey, we're doing this on our spare time and for free!" is a well-known ward against accountability in things like spelling/grammar-checking that the so-called 'fans' resort to quite often. It's 'fans' that whine and harass translators for not working fast enough, for not adhering to some arbitrary 'fan'-created release window, out of some twisted sense of entitlement where they believe they deserve these works in some way or another. Is it any wonder that a group like insani would want to be set apart from this?

Also, I hope at some point somebody would take to a dictionary and look up the definition for 'elitist' so that we can stop throwing that word around just for fun. The first misuse of the word I can recall was from some knob whining about how it was elitist to expect people to buy eroge legitimately as though not being able to afford a luxury commodity somehow entitles one to take it for free. Since then elitist has come to be used to talk about everything from people who put effort into studying Japanese and can read more than the average user to translation groups that aspire to a higher quality standard than most. Most of us here seem to be reasonably intelligent people, so let's try and keep the bad rhetoric to a minimum as much as possible.

Tl;dr: This post has nothing to do with Anime North 2008.
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  #17  
Old 2008-05-30, 19:57
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Asceai Asceai is offline
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Originally Posted by GreatSaintLouis View Post
How so? It's 'fans' that advocate downloading games if they happen to be difficult to get ahold of outside of Japan, under the pretense that getting a hold of a title no matter what makes one a 'fan'. The 'fan' production process in most cases involves premature project announcements, subpar editing, missed release estimates, and drama with the rest of the community when the translations don't proceed as smoothly as the rest of the 'fans' would like. The 'fans' will translate a title without contacting the original authors for permission and without making sure that their translation is the best possible representation of the original work in English. Was the comment truly unnessicary, redundant, and mean-sprited, or was it simply true?
The fact that 'fans' do those things doesn't mean all fans do. It's an unnecessary, mean-spirited generalisation of a group that just happens to include ME.

Yes, I'm a fan.

I'm proud of being a fan.

Therefore, because I am a fan, I pirate eroge and encourage others to do the same. I harass translation groups, because clearly the members of said translation groups should only be working on the translation - working to put bread on the table a secondary priority, of course.

Is there any reason at all why I shouldn't get angry over such a comment? No, there isn't. I have every right to be angry with someone that would make such a categorisation, and I _am_ angry (as angry as I can be with someone I only know through one offhand remark that they made, on the Internet of all things, anyway). Yes, I am aware that the comment wasn't specifically targeted at me, or intended to be targeted at me. That changes absolutely nothing - in fact, if it was directed specifically at me, I wouldn't care. It doesn't matter at all whether someone happens to think that I support piracy (because eroge is just TOO EXPENSIVE, amirite?) or anything like that. However, as the categorisation includes a lot of perfectly respectable people who most definitely do not deserve to be labeled that way, I'm offended.

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Is 'Five Centimeters Per Second' any good? I loved 'Voices of a Distant Star', though I haven't yet gotten around to picking up 'The Place Promised in our Early Days'.
I thought so. I liked it quite a lot.
I liked the OST, too, although I kinda wish there was a bit more variety in it.
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  #18  
Old 2008-05-31, 13:39
ChocoEd ChocoEd is offline
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Insani isn't just elitist, we're also elite! ;-)

But seriously, we definitely have struggled with our relationship to the rest of the community, and often have taken single bad examples to be typical of the audience as a whole, whether or not that really is the case.

Much of our community efforts have been targeted towards translation teams themselves instead, as we'd like nothing better than to be continually blown away by collaborators and competitors releasing games that put our own stuff to shame.

I can't apologize for our pre-release silence, though... that policy is actually a huge asset for us, and highly recommended. I've been on the other side of that choice in the past, and I can say it's incredibly demoralizing to have a hard week at work and then start fielding "Are you done yet?!" complaints about your supposedly fun hobby. Guilt is a lousy motivator.

If you want to communicate about your projects, just finish them first, celebrate with the audience and fans afterwards, and then put together a nice retrospective for other teams (and your own team) to learn from for the next time. :)
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  #19  
Old 2008-05-31, 17:38
Roto
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Originally Posted by ChocoEd View Post
I can't apologize for our pre-release silence, though... that policy is actually a huge asset for us, and highly recommended. I've been on the other side of that choice in the past, and I can say it's incredibly demoralizing to have a hard week at work and then start fielding "Are you done yet?!" complaints about your supposedly fun hobby. Guilt is a lousy motivator.
As someone who doesn't translate (yet) and just enjoys the translations when they're completed, I actually really appreciate this approach. It's a great surprise to check the site one day and find out about a new translation that's already completed. It's too easy for a group to say they're working on something and then give up later, or have the main translator quit, or things like that. I'd rather be nicely surprised when a project is completed than anticipate something that will never come to fruition.
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  #20  
Old 2008-05-31, 19:19
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Agilis Agilis is offline
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Default Elitist posts go here

I'm partly writing this here because a totally separate discussion has sprung up on the ANorth 2008 thread and I can't tell what flames are flying at what with a glance at the front page. Mods! I know you're out there, split off the threads and merge it in!

---

This whole debate about elitism irritates me because the epithet of 'elitist' gets thrown left and right pointing at a whole slew of vague topics and then people lump all the bad things together and go "look at what you're doing you elitist scum, stop behaving elitist, you know who you are." Since that's about as useful as spitting into the wind, let's break things down and figure out what's the scummy behavior and what's not.

Let me be very clear about my position. I'm an elitist bastard. I believe in meritocracy, that actions are worth more than talk, that reputation and history is a critical part of the community, that not everyone has equal standing in a debate, that not everyone's opinion weighs the same, and in the realm of doing things in the world, not everyone is equal.

There's lots of accusations of different types of elitism around, so I'm just going to cut out a few pieces in the name of saving space.

The one that stands out the most is the whole "elitist translation groups" thing. First, let's be clear that by virtue of there being very few translators relative to the general population here, then yes, we're an elite group skill-wise in the existing context. I've previously written on a number of occasions that translation is a skill that needs to be practiced and honed, and so not every random Joe can do it. I'm strongly opposed to wiki translation, sloppy work, that stupid anti-elitist phrase 'any translation is better than none', and a bunch of other things that people use to try to make the whole translation process somehow more egalitarian.

We look elitist because we can feel obligated to stand up and point out flaws in works, hopefully in a constructive manner, because having a bad translation out in the world ruins the collective image translators in this community presents to the world. We don't discuss release schedules because we're not paid to deliver on a given date and life gets in the way. We don't like encouraging piracy because we're the ones who have our names/handles right on the thing. We don't like being anonymous because then there's no reputation to guide readers into knowing how much they can trust our work. We translate for ourselves and not for "the Internet" because last I checked no one owes "the Internet" anything. The list goes on and on.

However, we're not elitists who want all the supposed status we have for the hell of it. If you've got the skills, then by all means join us. Hell, we're happy to help you get here. Gp32's written a number of articles about translation projects. Because I hate watching translation projects get mismanaged into the ground, I'm continuing a series on project management and plan on continuing with translation articles when I have time. Other people write about this or that topic and make them public. If we were really scum, we'd keep all knowledge to ourselves because then we'd forever be unique in our position.

Now, orthogonal to this whole thing is having a bad attitude. There's plenty of people all over the place, both in and out of the translator communities, in about the same proportion I'd bet, that have crappy attitudes. If you're going to point fingers, don't point at the collection of people who just happen have this or that skill that sets them apart, point at the specific idiot who's being a jerk.

Now, if we want to be elitist as a forum together, there's plenty of things worth being elitist about. Let's be elitist about idiots who come to an argument spouting illogic and nonsense and don't even bother to do basic fact checking before they mouth off. Or be elitist against people who post constant 'me too!' posts to anything and everything, including spam posts, just to boost their post count (because it obviously increases their credibility). Or how about those guys who simply come and post 1-liner 'LOLZ FAILZ! posts that have absolutely 0 information content.

If we have to accept that kind of nonsense just so we "don't look elitist", give me the elitist label now so I can wear it with pride.
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  #21  
Old 2008-06-01, 01:55
Sonozaki Futago-tachi
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Some very good points you make there, Agilis, and good articles about translation project management. (I happen to be our team's programmer, occasional onscripter engine fixer, editor with some Japanese knowledge but focused on English writing, graphics touch-up artist, beta-test herder, release manager, blogger, chief cook & bottle-washer. Whew!) Shion made a recent post on our blog describing our process, if you'd like to comment on that; we're quite new to this translation project business, so any advice helps!

And I agree, a small core of people who can work together well helps to maintain consistency. It's best to have other people do beta testing (multiple pairs of eyes help with finding things you missed), but the final decision and rendering should lie with the editor. I have to say, although there's nothing better than a good knowledgeable picky tester, any comments can be valuable (so long as a tester actually makes them); even when we disagree with a tester's comment, the fact that it was made points out a spot where the writing might confuse readers.

I don't know what's typical for pacing releases, but we don't seem to have a lot of "are you done yet?" complaints, so I guess we're doing pretty well. Haven't seen much in the way of people saying bad things about our releases either, which I guess is a good sign as well; still, I don't mind hearing about problems - it's not like our work is perfect, after all.

Is that elitist? I dunno. We just want to know how the story goes, and we're having fun working on it together. It's also rewarding to take excellent source material and produce a decent adaptation. What more could you ask for?

Mion (Sonozaki Futago-tachi)
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  #22  
Old 2008-06-01, 02:22
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Asceai Asceai is offline
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You know, as my own brand of elitism, I'm going to go start* translating G-Senjou no Maou.

Given my own abilities in Japanese (and English, as it happens), I'm sure it'll be QUALITY.

*certainly no implied or overt guarantees that I'm actually going to translate this 37K-textbox thing. I might even only do the main route, since the subroutes aren't as interesting.
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  #23  
Old 2008-06-01, 04:00
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Elitism?

The only elitism I see is/was from Gipface and gp32. The former for being a hypocrite and the latter for an issue that could be resolved in a civil manner but turned out to be something else.

While I can't say much about wiki translation (current project feels more like the usual fare rather than a collab effort and I obviously can't say anything about Clannad), I'll just say this: I respect everyone's views to the best of my abilities and patience (which is just about wearing out for some people), but <b>if certain people could just can it on the trolling</b>, we'd be a lot better.

...Yeah we need Misu back. Where'd he go?
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  #24  
Old 2008-06-01, 12:42