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Old 2010-10-25, 23:40   Link #221
karice67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OceanBlue View Post
a.k.a. It depends on your target audience, which depends on the purpose of your group, which depends on the preferences of your group i.e. opinions.
QFT. (but with emphasis)

If you're satisfying your target audience (as well as your own standards, I'd hope), then it really doesn't matter what stylistic choices you make, as long as the right meaning gets across. Those who prefer different styles just have to look elsewhere.

Of course, we run into a problem with so-called 'fans' use it as an excuse not to buy a release because they don't like the translation/stylistic choices of the official licensor. My solution at present is to buy the R2 DVDs, or some other merchandise, and get a fansub if I want to spread the love. But of course, not everyone can afford to do that.
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Old 2010-10-26, 00:00   Link #222
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vegard Aune View Post
and translating "Okazaki-san" as "Tomoya".
What fansubbers actually do this?

gg did it on 2 episodes because people misunderstood what "Western name order" means. I can't actually think of any other examples of this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by murikibishii View Post
I think some of you need to read this article on why honorifics always need to be left in. The guy has given this a lot of thought and he has done a thorough job going through the various strawman arguments.
I like how this guy uses futon as an example of a Japanese word in the English dictionary when American futon is completely different.
Karaoke too, since the "oke" part comes from English. So it's like a 50% loan word we loaned back. Herp.
Sushi is kind of bad too since Americans think that makizushi = sushi, and stuff like nigirizushi and inarizushi sold on the same menu = "strange mysterious things that are not sushi but sold on the same menu as them".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentar View Post
And this is a simple straw man pseudo argument which it its absoluteness is flat-out wrong.
My stance of "placebo" comes purely from what the people who bother to leave feedback say.
I guess you're saying that people who leave feedback on fansubs are flat-out wrong. (In which case, I wholeheartedly agree because a lot of them just talk about karaoke.)

Additionally, Mentar, I feel like you're trying to pin me as some super right/left/north/south/west/east-winged anti-honorifics person...? I have no idea why I'm even getting pinned in this direction. I left in 3 honorifics when I tled HotD.
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Last edited by Schneizel; 2010-10-26 at 00:27.
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Old 2010-10-26, 03:54   Link #223
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murikibishii View Post
I think some of you need to read this article on why honorifics always need to be left in. The guy has given this a lot of thought and he has done a thorough job going through the various strawman arguments.
I can't be bothered to do a full quotation and point-by-point refutation of that article like every asshole on Usenet has been doing since the 80's, because lawl, it is full of so much bullshit.

For example, in one of the first paragraphs he uses James Clavell's Shogun as an example. Which is understandable, because that novel is basically every weeaboo's wet dream since it's about a western guy who basically becomes Japanese, in spirit if not in body. It's also full of culture shock things and a lot of talking about How the Japanese Think. I really loved this book when I was 17 years old or so, because after I had finished it I felt like I really had understood a lot about the Japanese mindset. Of course, I was completely wrong, because Shogun is not only fiction and written by an American, it also isn't really intended as a story for weeaboos (it was published in 1975, long before weeabooism existed), it's really about leading men, about war and politics and manipulation etc etc. I still like it a lot today, but for completely different reasons than when I was 17. Back then I tried to read the other novels in the Asian saga but didn't like them because they weren't as weeaboo; now, of course, I have a completely different opinion.

Anyway, the point I was trying to get to was that Shogun is an exceptionally bad argument in this debate. To begin with, it was written by an American in English; it was never Japanese at all. Secondly, the entire point about the usage of a lot of untranslated Japanese, honorifics etc etc in Shogun is that you aren't supposed to understand it, because the protagonist doesn't either. Of course, now all the weeaboo fans read it and go "omg I really understand a lot of this! I UNDERSTAND JAPAN! SOON I CAN BE JAPANESE TOO, JUST LIKE BLACKTHORNE!", but that really wasn't the point of it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentar View Post
...
Unconvincing. Naturally, on our "hardly above layman" level, we'll still miss alot of connotations. But it's a simple fact that by localizing honorifics, details are lost especially in those trouble cases I listed above. You don't need to be able to understand EVERYTHING for that, you only need to be able to understand SOMETHING. And yes, by now I do consider myself capable of identifying and parsing most honorifics, spoken by which persons in which tone of voice. Again: Certainly not everything, but enough to make it worthwhile. Let's not make it harder than it is. It sure is no rocket science.
No. You think you understand and that you get the connotations, but that is very different from actually understanding. Have you lived in Japan for five years or so? Ten? And no, I don't mean "living in some expat apartment and speaking English with half of the people you meet every day", I mean like "live in a Japanese home and don't speak a word in English nor in your own language for weeks on end". No? Because that's the sort of commitment it takes to get some actual, real understanding of another culture (but to some degree, you can never really shed the instincts and preconceptions instilled in you during the first few years of your life). Actually, no, that's what it would take to really get another European country's culture; in the case of Japan, I'm not sure if 20 years would suffice.

Again, it's obvious that you like the honorifics because you like thinking you understand social signals in another culture; you're even saying so yourself. The problem is that actually understanding a foreign social context is vastly more complicated than you seem to think it is. The example with the kitchen equipment I used in my previous post is something you can learn; they're just nouns that have clear and well-defined equivalents in almost every language. But social signals are something much more than that, especially when they're basically built into the language like they are in Japanese. To some degree it is impossible to really understand all the social signals even in your own native culture, particularly since they vary a lot between social classes and social contexts. In Japanese, with its dozens of different levels of politeness; it's not just a matter of what you say, but also how you say it.

Furthermore, the vast majority of fansub watchers aren't even half as well read as you, or even as me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentar View Post
And this is a simple straw man pseudo argument which it its absoluteness is flat-out wrong. I don't watch anime for a silly ego trip, but because I enjoy it, simple as that. And while I can watch all versions from "localize everything" to "keep all honorifics", I can say for sure that I prefer the middle-of-the-road versions for the reasons outlined above.
"ego trip"? What are you even talking about?
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Old 2010-10-26, 08:14   Link #224
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I fear this thread has gotten lost in the murky swamps of opinion again.
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Old 2010-10-26, 08:45   Link #225
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Originally Posted by TGEN View Post
I fear this thread has gotten lost in the murky swamps of opinion again.
Opinions about opinions being stated as facts, always a lovely discussion.

It's kinda amazing how so many people seem to treat fansubbing as a hard science.
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Old 2010-10-26, 08:54   Link #226
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Well, fansubbing is serious business after all.
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Old 2010-10-26, 09:41   Link #227
murikibishii
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schneizel View Post
about loanwords
You got it, because you can nitpick three words from his list it means that everything he said was wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFluff View Post
about Shogun
I can see why you didn't attempt point-by-point because if this is the best you could come up with you're really grasping at straws. Who cares if it's written by an American, it's still portraying life in Japan in the old days and not omitting the honorifics makes a huge difference. In any case this was just an example he used so you didn't even address his point properly. Tagging people as 'weeaboo' is not an actual argument.
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Old 2010-10-26, 10:30   Link #228
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Originally Posted by ladholyman View Post
A common mistake is setting deadlines. That never works.

And it'll take a miracle for us to finish Ojamajo Doremi by 2012.
Mmmm... when did Doremi learn this? What was all the blood and tears for during the subbing of Kenichi?!
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Old 2010-10-26, 11:15   Link #229
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Honorifics have no place in an anime with a non-Japanese setting.
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Old 2010-10-26, 11:20   Link #230
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Originally Posted by Schneizel View Post
What fansubbers actually do this?

gg did it on 2 episodes because people misunderstood what "Western name order" means. I can't actually think of any other examples of this.
Ok, to be fair, that's more a problem I've seen in official subs rather than fansubs. I can't really think of any fansub-examples apart from gg's release of Ookami Kakushi episode 1, and that was a one-time issue they corrected fairly quickly... But the only reason I brought it up in the first place was because I was agreeing with Mentar. Though I do seem to recall having seen it in some fansub too, it's just that I can't for the life of me remember where...
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Old 2010-10-26, 13:51   Link #231
Schneizel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murikibishii View Post
You got it, because you can nitpick three words from his list it means that everything he said was wrong.
I said, "I like how..." and nothing more about his wall of nerd sperging text. I also said I used a few honorifics in subtitles myself. My opinion of everything he said is "lol, he mad", and nothing he says makes me think that honorifics in subs is anything more than placebo.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vegard Aune View Post
Ok, to be fair, that's more a problem I've seen in official subs rather than fansubs. I can't really think of any fansub-examples apart from gg's release of Ookami Kakushi episode 1, and that was a one-time issue they corrected fairly quickly... But the only reason I brought it up in the first place was because I was agreeing with Mentar. Though I do seem to recall having seen it in some fansub too, it's just that I can't for the life of me remember where...
In that case, I wonder where Mentar has seen it happen in fansubs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Starks View Post
Honorifics have no place in an anime with a non-Japanese setting.
insert baccano with honorifics.jpg here
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Old 2010-10-27, 04:44   Link #232
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Quote:
Originally Posted by murikibishii View Post
I think some of you need to read this article on why honorifics always need to be left in. The guy has given this a lot of thought and he has done a thorough job going through the various strawman arguments.
First of all,I've really come to not care either way about honorifics so have no real opinion on the matter.
However I do have a few problems with you saying this post shows "why honorifics always need to be left in".In his "solution" section the author of this post says the solution is dual sub tracks,therefore acknowledging that it's just a matter of preference and someone can watch a show without honorifics.
The whole post sounds more like "Please leave honorifics in for the peoplelike me,it will make me happy and not bother the rest of the audience".


Let's go in detail


1) Leaving Japanese honorifics in the translations are confusing to some people. As such, we should do what we can to eliminate confusion.

His answer to this actually never proves that this statement is wrong.He mentions that series have been popular despite using honorifics,but never does he show that those honorifics didn't confuse people,in fact he says he didn't really get them:

Quote:
I was smart enough at 13 to understand that these were apparently Japanese honorifics and that they meant something but what exactly they meant, I didn't know
So I don't see how his answer adresses the argument.

2) Leaving the honorifics in subtitles or manga adaptations restricts that title from being accepted by a wider audience and prevents growth of the industry.

I'll leave the manga part mostly alone since I'm not that confident in my knowledge of what's popular in the US but it still leaves me wondering:
-How "mainstream" did fruit basket get?It might have been a mainstream manga but overall?
-Maybe it could have been even more popular if it didn't use honorifics?We'll never know I guess.

I'll jump to point 5 and come back to 3 and 4 later

5) Only lazy translators leave in honorifics or Japanese terms in subtitles or manga adaptations.

He makes a good point in this

Quote:
forced translations of honorifics can sometimes work but they often don't work all the time, leaving the translator hanging in the wind
That is a good point,in fact i'm surprised he only makes it now,it'd be the first I'd make,but about exemple 2:

Quote:
However, the official English translation for this episode still has her saying "Mister Zelgadiss" which makes NO sense considering he and the other males are in disguise lest they be caught and punished as males in the story. If the official translation had just retained the Japanese honorific, there wouldn't have been an issue.
Maybe I'm having a major brainfart,but couldn't she have just said "Miss" to take into account that they're in disguise?

3) People who know Japanese honorifics can hear them when they watch an anime in Japanese and so we don't need to include Japanese honorifics in the subtitles.


About the first paragraph:Could just be me but a big difference I get is that I might not recognize foreign words pronounced with a japanese accent as easily as I recognize honorifics.

About the second paragraph:

Quote:
In fact, my understanding is that most English speaking anime fans want to watch their anime IN ENGLISH, not Japanese. The only reason we have a Japanese audio track is because supposedly 20% of us are hardcore enough to want to watch it that way. I'm pretty sure that amongst us 20%, we are intelligent enough to figure out or know what honorifics mean at a basic level. So, why not throw the hardcore fans a bone and leave the honorifics in the subtitles?
So if you're watching the dub then suddenly it's ok to lose the subtleties mentioned in point 5?If someone thinks that honorifics are important to fully understand what is going on then why leave dub watchers out of the loop?

I know he didn't outright say "it's ok to leave honorifics out of dubs" but it seems to me it's strongly implied.
The whole notion that "hardcore fans" watch subs only is messed up,and even if I accept that,the notion that all fans "hardcore enough" to watch subs care about honorifics is also messed up.That's a pretty black and white view of the situation that's just to simple to understand the situation.His black and white view is best summed by what he says later:

Quote:
it caters to the hardcore fans who want honorifics and the fans who oppose anything Japanese in a Japanese product.
Are there no fans in between?

The sub only dvd argument might have had some validity but with Crunchyroll licencing more and more animes,it's not niche titles that are available only with subs anymore.

4) All Japanese words should be translated, period. There is no excuse to not translate a term or honorific.

I agree that this statement is false but that's pretty much off topic because saying this is false doesn't make "honorifics always need to be left in" correct,again,this isn't a black or white situation.

6) If you leave honorifics in, you have to leave in more words as well. "ANB-san, honorifics are so sugoi desu ne."

Again,i'll copy-paste what I said above: I agree that this statement is false but that's pretty much off topic because saying this is false doesn't make "honorifics always need to be left in" correct,again,this isn't a black or white situation.

7) If you need honorifics in subtitles, you should just go learn Japanese.

Again,same as 4 and 6,won't copy and paste this time.

Quote:
Still, if honorifics in subtitles bother these people so much, why are they watching anime in Japanese at all? After all, one would think that when watching anime in Japanese, one is looking for a more Japanese perspective rather than the Western one received from an English dub.
Other reason for watching with subs I could remember,this is pretty personal:
-Not available with dub (see above)
-You think the actors of the dub aren't good.

8) Most fansubbers have stopped using honorifics so there's no reason for official subtitles to keep honorifics either.

No idea if this true or not,but it doesn't matter because again copy and paste "saying this is false doesn't make "honorifics always need to be left in" correct,again,this isn't a black or white situation."


TL,DR

The guy comes off to me as saying "please,i want to feel like a "hardcore" fan and I need honorifics in my subs to do that.Don't worry,putting honorifics in your subs doesn't prevent the show from selling well......Oh yeah and by the way without them some subtleties might be lost in the translation."

Not to mention that even if you agree that all of those statement are false,saying they are false doesn't make your own statement "honorifics always need to be left in" true,so this post couldn't prove that to begin with.
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Old 2010-10-27, 05:55   Link #233
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Originally Posted by Schneizel View Post
My stance of "placebo" comes purely from what the people who bother to leave feedback say. I guess you're saying that people who leave feedback on fansubs are flat-out wrong. (In which case, I wholeheartedly agree because a lot of them just talk about karaoke.)
No, that's not what I've been saying. Frankly, I don't care very much about what people leaving feedback on your site think ^_^; ... in my experience, no matter what you do, there's always going to be people who disagree. If you did a 180 and completely reverted a decision, you would ALSO get complaints, just from different people. In other words, feedback on boards are useless as anecdotal evidence.

I only got involved in this thread when bb said "You're an idiot if you want honorifics", because I dislike this kind of absolutistic statement. We're deep in personal preference territory here, and wanting to keep honorifics - at least for certain cases which can NOT be easily localized - is perfectly fine.

Quote:
Additionally, Mentar, I feel like you're trying to pin me as some super right/left/north/south/west/east-winged anti-honorifics person...? I have no idea why I'm even getting pinned in this direction. I left in 3 honorifics when I tled HotD.
Nobody is perfect, I guess?

Not trying to pin anyone as anything. Just saying that IMHO it's preferable to keep some honorifics.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFluff View Post
No. You think you understand and that you get the connotations, but that is very different from actually understanding.
Look, Fluffy. Have you ever taken formal Japanese classes or lessons? I've had 3 starts so far, twice classes and once as private lessons. The various forms of addressing someone have always been a central issue in the first 2 sessions of each of them. And while I don't claim to have a native speaker level understanding of them, I do believe I can draw relevant information out of them. This is NOT the kind of higher secret you only get access to after 5 years, this is beginner stuff you begin to learn after 5 hours.

For me, Ciel-senpai should be Ciel-senpai and NOT "Miss Ciel". Trying to force the senpai-kouhai principle into an English setting is much worse than just keeping it. And yes, I feel perfectly able to pick up the implications even without having lived in Japan for 20 years.
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Old 2010-10-27, 09:19   Link #234
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentar View Post
For me, Ciel-senpai should be Ciel-senpai and NOT "Miss Ciel". Trying to force the senpai-kouhai principle into an English setting is much worse than just keeping it. And yes, I feel perfectly able to pick up the implications even without having lived in Japan for 20 years.
It's also true that it's only a rare anime that actually uses the truly subtle meanings of honorifics that requires that deep understanding of them.
Most of the time the usage is superficial, much like the rest of the writing.
i.e. "they call her -kun because she acts like a boy"
or "he calls her -chan because he's trying to act like a superior"

is about as subtle as it gets.

Real life story: I have a problem when it comes to my own honorific use. Back when I was in grad school I would always refer to my teachers or advisors as "Dr. XXXX", even my own advisor, etc... It was just ingrained in me to call them like that, and it actually was kind of an issue because it made me sound standoff-ish.
But try as I might I could never get myself to call any of the professors "Joe".

This has translated into an issue in Japanese where I stick to calling everyone Last Name-san, even if they are a pretty good friend. I try and switch to a first name basis but keep reverting back naturally.
Thankfully now it just makes me sound like the cliche overpolite gaijin, which is usually beneficial.
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Old 2010-10-27, 22:07   Link #235
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Originally Posted by totoum View Post
a lot of detail
It seems you're concentrating your fire on my half sentence summary of a huge blog post and calling it my statement, which doesn't make a whole lot of sense to me.
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Old 2010-10-28, 03:37   Link #236
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amusingly, since it was brought up as a troll argument elsewhere, I watched the latest south park episode (a parody of Inception) fansubbed into Japanese.

Mr. Mackey, the school counselor, has a vocal tic of saying "m'kay" at the end of all his sentences, and indeed, the fansubbers put ンケーイ every time he said it (every single time... and he was like the main character this episode).

Also, the word "Dude" was left completely in roman characters and untranslated when said by the characters for some reason. ( I suppose "Dude" is considered untranslatable into Japanese )

They did attempt to translate some of the puns, like "butterfly-poon" was "chou-chou-man-cho"... (nice!)
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Old 2010-12-13, 09:37   Link #237
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Late comer to the party.... Some very good discussion going on on pages 11-12 regarding retention/localization and honorifics, only it's too bad some people feel they have to add some insults and flag red herrings when stating their otherwise worthwhile arguments.... oh wait, it's the internet

I absolutely agree with TheFluff that even though we may be fluent in a language, we can still be lightyears from speaking it as natives, or understanding all its nuances. Coincidently, the kithcen utensils example is also the first one I use when I encounter someone who is "young, confident and naive" and hasn't fully realized the difference between "fluent" and "native" (second example, fruits or vegetables; third, plants - except I'm pretty bad with those in any language....). The point, which Mentar has perhaps not stated clearly enough and TheFluff & Schneizel seem to be avoiding to respond to, is that even without a "native" understanding of honorifics, someone familiar (again, not on a "native" level of familiarity) with their usage can still benefit from their retainment in a translation. They might still convey more to those familiar with their usage than any localized version you can come up with. And, I'm sorry, but the difficulty of translating honorifics can only rarely be boiled down to a "shitty translator". To many basic-level speakers of Japanese -kun, -san, -sama etc. convey much more, and much more easily, than any term your best translator will come with. The most important question you must ask yourself is - who is your target audience? Obviously, as someone else has correctly noticed, most basic-level speakers of Japanese will note the use of honorifics anyway, and that's a very strong argument to try and appeal to the rest of the audience (no, not advance or native speakers of Japanese - they either watch raw or don't read the subs). However, the post by blakbunnie27 shows exactly the way you shouldn't treat your audience - "We must localize everything for the audience since we know Japanese better than them any way, and if they try and understand the original setting from what little Japanese they do know and wish for it to be retained in the translation - WELL THEN THEY'RE IDIOTS".

Personally, I'm at a point where I don't feel strongly about this, since, if I read the subs, it's to understand what I'm listening to, not the other way around (and I don't hesitate to watch raws). I think both factions make a good case, but I still cannot possibly fathom how exchaning the first and last names can be acceptable. And free translation of names should of course be considered the worst possible solution, Ton-chan is not Snappy any more than Tadakichi-san is woofie.
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Old 2010-12-13, 10:13   Link #238
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Quote:
Originally Posted by totoum View Post
8) Most fansubbers have stopped using honorifics so there's no reason for official subtitles to keep honorifics either.

No idea if this true or not,but it doesn't matter because again copy and paste "saying this is false doesn't make "honorifics always need to be left in" correct,again,this isn't a black or white situation."
Not true in the least. Off the top of my head, gg and Mochi(sometimes, like in Letter Bee) are the only group I know that doesn't use honorifics. Might be more, but I haven't seen them.
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Old 2010-12-13, 13:54   Link #239
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Originally Posted by DmonHiro View Post
Not true in the least. Off the top of my head, gg and Mochi(sometimes, like in Letter Bee) are the only group I know that doesn't use honorifics. Might be more, but I haven't seen them.
We (Central Anime) don't use them unless they are absolutely necessary. The only time you'd see them would be on a nickname or something similar such as "A-chan" or "B-kun".
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Old 2010-12-13, 17:16   Link #240
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Originally Posted by PCSExponent View Post
Personally, I'm at a point where I don't feel strongly about this, since, if I read the subs, it's to understand what I'm listening to, not the other way around (and I don't hesitate to watch raws). I think both factions make a good case, but I still cannot possibly fathom how exchaning the first and last names can be acceptable. And free translation of names should of course be considered the worst possible solution, Ton-chan is not Snappy any more than Tadakichi-san is woofie.
If by "exchanging first and last names" you mean the whole "subbing Okazaki-san as Tomoya"-thing I mentioned earlier, then indeed, there is NO justification for that. At all. Ever. Thankfully it pretty much never happens.
On the other hand, swapping the name-order around ("Tomoya Okazaki" instead of "Okazaki Tomoya") like quite a few fansubbers and practically all official subbers do, is more of a personal preference-deal. I for one don't really care one way or the other. I mean, I tend to use the western order when actually talking about them myself, but in all... uh, one... anime I've translated myself, I use the Japanese style. (But of course, everyone uses the Japanese style for One Piece... Even 4Kids did that...)
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