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Pointlessly Stupid Anime Translations: A Hadena Test

This afternoon, az and I both took the PSAT (Practice SAT? Preparatory SAT? Puerile SAT? Pregnant SAT?) test. That is not a manifestation of RAS syndrome, because SAT doesn’t stand for ‘Scholastic Aptitude Test’. It’s just… SAT. I took the test because it’s mandatory for everyone in my class; az took the test because he’s weird.

It was only after the final Writing Skills section that I realized just how Dark_Sage manages to critique fansubs so well. There was no other conceivable explanation: Dark_Sage must be a disgruntled SAT tutor for spoiled rich brats. Unable to suppress his inner rage at their stupidity, Dark_Sage sought catharsis through a more respectable medium: fansub reviews.

Why? Well, let’s just reproduce some sample PSAT questions, Hadena style. I won’t take screenshots because I want to retain my brain cells until after my socials presentation, so instead, let’s analyze the comments of arashi0 and his team (who are truly “in [their] own world”) on their own website, over the past three months.

I realize that the quality of their comments are substandard to the ‘quality’ of their much-edited script, and so I have omitted both sentences without proper capitalization/punctuation and sentences written facetiously. (Ridiculing others’ comments would be unreasonably offensive, especially to those attempting to learn English. As demonstrated in numerous schools, derogatory remarks generally hinder students’ linguistic development. Then again, so does Hadena…)

In short: a test. Answers at the bottom. Record your answers somewhere so you can compare your answers with mine. Post my test-creating mistakes as comments. There are probably mistakes. They are not intentional.

Time – 5 minutes
8 Questions (1-6)

Instructions: The following sentences test correctness and effectiveness of expression. Part of each sentence or the entire sentence is italicized; beneath each sentence are five ways of phrasing the italicized material. Choice A repeats the original phrasing; the other four choices are different. If you think the original phrasing produces a better sentence than any of the alternatives, select choice A; if not, select one of the other choices.

In making your selection, follow the requirements of standard written English; that is, pay attention to grammar, choice of words, sentence construction, and punctuation. Your selection should result in the most effective sentence – clear and precise, without awkwardness or ambiguity.

Example: Laura Ingalls Wilder published her first book and she was sixty-five years old then.
(A) and she was sixty-five years old then
(B) when she was sixty-five
(C) at age sixty-five years old
(D) upon the reaching of sixty-five years
(E) at the time when she was sixty-five
Correct Answer: (B)

  1. Make sure to put this file in the same folder where the video file is.
    (A) where the video file is
    (B) at the place of the video file
    (C) as the video file is placed
    (D) where the video file’s folder is
    (E) as the video file
  2. I translate everything in this place except mentioned otherwise.
    (A) except mentioned otherwise
    (B) unless when mentioned otherwise
    (C) except when otherwise mentioned
    (D) except when I mention it otherwise
    (E) unless otherwise mentioned
  3. Sorry for the inconsistency, folks, but recently I have been spacing out a bit too much
  4. (A) I have been spacing out a bit too much
    (B) I have been a bit too much spacing out
    (C) I have spaces out a bit too much
    (D) I was constantly spacing out
    (E) I have been in space a bit too much

  5. This release is late, cause I had to find a timer awake to do this show.
    (A) a timer awake
    (B) a timer who was still awake
    (C) an alarm timer
    (D) an awakened timer
    (E) an awoken tiger
  6. We did an original translation for this episode, like ep 05, unlike few others
    (A) unlike few others
    (B) unlike many episodes
    (C) unlike a few other groups
    (D) unlike a few other Hadenas
    (E) unlike few translations
  7. I checked it myself, so it is problem at your end.
    (A) it is problem at your end
    (B) the end with the problem is yours
    (C) the problem is the end
    (D) the end is the problem
    (E) it is a problem at your end

Time – 10 minutes
14 Questions (7-20)

Instructions: The following sentences test your ability to recognize grammar and usage errors. Each sentence may contain an error, many errors, or no errors at all. The possible errors are italicized with a bracketed letter following. If the sentence contains only one error, select the one italicized part that must be changed to make the sentence correct. If the sentence contains many errors, select the second last choice (when applicable). If the sentence is correct, select the last choice. In choosing answers, follow the requirements of standard written English.

Example: The other (A) delegates and him (B) immediately (C) accepted the resolution drafted by (D) the neutral states. No error (E)
Correct Answer: (B)

  1. Fansubbing doesn’t pays (A), so we solely (B) depend on fans supporting us (C) to keep things running (D). No error (E)
  2. Attribute (A) the delayed-early (B) release of a speedsub-delayed (C) show to Pathogen (D). No error (E)
  3. Reverse (A), it will get 100 times better (B) then it is (C) now. I have seen the release myself (D), and I don’t understand what you people are trolling about. No error (E)
  4. “Also, you have no right (A) to say a bit better (B), the editing is way better (C) then any of the sub groups out there (D).” No error (E)
  5. Kuroko 16, 17 is being worked on as well as (A) Kingdom 08. These two will be out before next episodes (B) of these two anime comes out (C). All errors (D) No error (E)
  6. Yeah, you don’t know any Japanese (A), so shut up. Bring This episode is better then (B) episode one. And you say that there were mistranslations (C) in the script… you need to have a Translator who has been doing his job for 2 years, and make him decide (D). There is no mistranslation (E) in this script.”
  7. Hmm… YES IT IS THE OFFICIAL LYRICS… BELIEVE IT OR NOT that’s the Engrish from the Japanese. I don’t know who wrote the songs for them. I don’t understand (A)
  8. Sup. No one likes us no matter how good (A) of a job we do. I can assure you, bro (B), Sukitte ii na yo is ok. You don’t have to worry about what those (C) trollan fags got to say. All errors (D) No error (E)
  9. Well, the majority are (A) the devs of Communist and fagg subs; also, they are the mods (B) of nyaa… so yeah xD. But we ain’t got nothing (C) against them – this was done (D) to kill time. No error (E)
  10. The funniest thing is (A), we didn’t encode it [ROFL]. We just got a raw labeled ‘GREEN’[trusted] in the nyaa torrents (B) and used it to sub this, so go to heaven – we are better off in hell (C) without you guys. All errors (D) No error (E)
  11. The quality of the RAW/ENCODING is none of our fault (A). Please Don’t complain to us. There is no other high quality raw (B) available at the time of release. If you happen to find any contact me (C) via IRC. All errors (D) No error (E)
  12. I don’t even get why people like you have to come to our website even (A). You don’t like our release, but you are here to give us a lecture telling us what to do and what not (B). I don’t know what type of birdbrain you are, this is EPISODE 05 (C) not ep 04. All errors (D) No error (E)
  13. Your welcome (A), well you see we have limited time (B). We try to speed sub shows (C). There is only one Translator [myself]. And two editors. (D) What we have been trying to do is to release before horrible-subs/CR simulcast (E), and I think we can achieve that, but considering (F) the amount of time I allot to sub this, it gets problems like of that (G) you have mentioned. Thank you very much for your structural and well oriented (H) compilation of the mistakes [and not blindly bashing it (I) like most of them do], we will try our best to avoid them (J) hereon. All errors (K) No error (L)
  14. I have to laugh my heads off (A) now. You see, when we release something first (B), people say that we are bad, when we release a proper version (C) with proper Edit and QC (D), people say that we rip other’s script (E). FOR THE INFO: (F) WE DON’T RIP OFF ANYONE’S SCRIPT TO TLC, so try yo (G) grow up on the (H) hating Hadena thing (I), cause it’s really (J) getting annoying. All errors (K) No error (L)

…I give up.

tl;dr: arashi0 had multiple heads before he laughed them off, something about speeding shows about sub sandwiches, arashi0 appreciates mistake compilations as long as they pertain to wells, hadena’s already in hell, etc.

PART ONE: 1-E 2-E 3-A 4-B 5-C 6-E
PART TWO: 7-A 8-C 9-C 10-B 11-D 12-B
13-A 14-E 15-A 16-E 17-D 18-D 19-K 20-K

33 responses

  1. lol hahaha I can’t stop laughing XD

    2012/10/18 at 09:30

  2. CrunchySucks

    I don’t like how the earlier portion of question 7 was formed. I would just phase that question out entirely because it could look much better otherwise.

    7) In this episode, Asuna and Kirito converse with a woman at the church who had become a caretaker for children.

    I have the same problem with question 8.

    8) Hadena is aware that the quality of its releases has declined, and this my fault. I messed up frequently because I had many things to look after.

    I don’t want to look at part two as I need to start an assignment.

    2012/10/18 at 20:25

  3. nadeshiko

    >High school kids having enough time on their hands.
    >Super easy SAT.

    2012/10/18 at 23:19

  4. shi0nmaku

    I still am lolling on these post hahaha LOL, btw I’m on college if you guys know, oh put that next that shi0nmaku subs TLRD on his own -.-

    2012/10/18 at 23:48

  5. Guilty as charged. \(`⌒´)/

    2012/10/19 at 02:46

  6. You’re right, the phrasing is extremely awkward for the answers there, and the length doesn’t add anything to the post (unlike the last two questions). Removed.

    2012/10/19 at 02:51

  7. Glad you enjoyed it! Good to see a Hadena fan with half a sense of humour.

    2012/10/19 at 02:52

  8. nadeshiko

    Trust me; you do not want to test my intelligence. Just don’t.

    2012/10/19 at 05:32

  9. Procrastination

    “No sentence contains more than one error.”

    I think you should edit this out of the description for Part Two.

    2012/10/19 at 16:33

  10. nadeshiko

    One suggestion. I think you should use underlining instead of italics to denote choices. Sometimes it’s hard to see.

    2012/10/19 at 17:01

  11. Thanks for the suggestion, but I think underlines are harder to distinguish. I’ve underlined the last question; tell me what you think of it.

    2012/10/19 at 18:55

  12. Yep, totally forgot about that when making the last two questions.

    2012/10/19 at 18:55

  13. nadeshiko

    Hm… Underlines should be fine with fewer choices, like A through E, but your choices contain almost half the alphabet. In effect, it looks messy and the whole sentence seems underlined.

    Never mind, then.

    2012/10/19 at 20:14

  14. Exor

    I’ve never seen such stupid goons like you guys. Pointlessly stupid ‘Anime Translation’ huh? What are you fags trying to pull here anyway? You have enough time in your hands to troll like this, makes you even worst then Hadena. For your info, Hadena have started turning around this season and Dark_Sage is a major fagg along with the rest of them. Go and see what vael had to say about recent Hadena subs.

    Yo, I checked out other posts as well, you ppl are literally spamming Hadena site with this post of yours >Grow up. That arashi0 guy is a translator [so I won’t mind if I find irregularities in his English]. To me, this whole thing doesn’t seems anything better then a major troll, you are attacking the blogs, not their subs! This is outright hilarious [also, you are trying to discredit Hadena, just because of their reputation]! Anyway, no point in talking to brainless fags who go about commenting on each and every post to promote their blog.

    [I’ve always advocated that, if you think you are better or can judge others; you have to do the same thing as the person you are trying to judge. In this case you have to make better subs then hadena. Dark_Sage is one of those fags who doesn’t works. Critics are mainly people like that. They always have things to say about others while they don’t do anything themselves.]

    2012/10/19 at 20:22

  15. The Kenosha Kid

    ” In effect, it looks messy and the whole sentence seems underlined.”

    That’s Hadena for you.

    2012/10/19 at 21:33

  16. The Kenosha Kid

    Every now and then, on some corner or other of the internet, I’ve seen some poor soul try to say that Hadena’s grasp of the English language really isn’t as bad as we all say it is, and that we’re really just giving them a hard time.

    And I don’t think I have yet seen a single one of these defenses come without spelling, grammar, and/or punctuation errors. Such is speedsubbing.

    (Though considering the sheer size of the group nowadays, I wouldn’t be surprised if every now and then somebody manages to come out with a halfway-decent episode or two.)

    (Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ll go take my elitist, stuck-up ass elsewhere and stop worrying about crimes committed against the english language cuz it’s a stupid language anyways so why should i care as long as you can understand me?

    2012/10/19 at 21:38

  17. The Kenosha Kid

    1) I don’t really mind spelling and grammar mistakes on the internet, but it weakens your point when you’re trying to defend a group infamous for them.

    2) “Hadena have started turning around this season…”
    That’s what they say every season. And they do sort of improve. Slowly. Sporadically. Every now and then.

    3) “Dark_Sage is one of those fags who doesn’t works.”
    Actually, I’m pretty sure he has worked on fansubbing projects in the past, and regardless of their quality overall, I’m pretty sure the stuff he’s worked on has been consistently better than Hadena. Feel free to point out examples of how wrong I am, though.

    4) Is it wrong to want high-quality subs?

    5) Is it wrong to laugh at idiots?

    (Those last two questions are more serious than they look. I really do want to know how your positions on these matters influence your defense of Hadena and your anger at the group’s detractors.)

    2012/10/19 at 21:45

  18. I would try them for the first five questions, but it’d interfere with consistency. Thanks, though.

    2012/10/19 at 22:23

  19. Thanks for your thoughtful comment.

    Firstly, I apologize for my spamming. I forgot that linking posts to wordpress sites would result in automatic pingbacks; if the Hadena team wishes to remove them, they can do so. In hindsight, I should have researched more into how to stop wordpress from sending trackbacks to other sites I link to.

    Onto your main point: I am not ‘trolling’. This is simply an entertaining linguistic examination. If you were not entertained (although you seemed to be, if you thought this was ‘outright hilarious’! :), that’s fine; as long as at least one person is, then what I’m “trying to pull here” succeeded. Neither did I dwell on Hadena’s translation ability, for my only mention of Hadena’s actual subbing was a positive remark. Any discrediting of Hadena happened as a result of arashi0 and dragon132004’s own comments, and not from their translation/timing abilities; in fact, it doesn’t matter whether either of them are translators. That hardly seems unfair, as I would hardly mind a similar test on my own numerous grammatical stumbles!

    Finally, your outlook has always been one of my pet peeves, as it clearly fails when universalized. The resultant society would be sheer chaos, with the only critics of politicians being politicians themselves, with the only critics of movies being directors themselves, and with the only critics of war being soldiers themselves. Politicians would soon create a tyrannical oligarchy. We’d be unable to differentiate Citizen Kane from Plan 9 from Outer Space. We wouldn’t be able to criticize Rebecca Black’s performance of Friday because of our inability to create such a widespread music video. Perpetual war’d reign, for the only people who could criticize soldiers for murdering innocents would be those who murder innocents themselves.

    The thought is obviously inane, for we criticize daily; your comment is a criticism of my post, and having not written a similar post, can you really say anything about me? Besides, as I mentioned two paragraphs preceding – this test criticizes neither arashi0 nor dragon132004 on their ability to fansub. It simply highlights some of their sample comments. The ability to write coherent and grammatically satisfactory comments is one I possess. On the whole, criticism is always beneficial to all aspects of daily life.

    Furthermore, authorial intent matters far less in artistic media than in, say, scientific papers. In other words, the quality of art is based less on the author’s objective than on the audience’s perception. If the author fails to properly communicate his objective, the audience’s perception takes precedence. Thus, the audience becomes more influential than the author, and do not have to achieve the same level of artistic depth.

    P.S. I’ve corrected the errant pseudo-BBCode in your post. For future comments, note that <em> produces italics, and that <i> is already deprecated. Also, you must close tags with a forward slash (/), not a backslash (\).

    2012/10/19 at 22:58

  20. I like to make posts.

    2012/10/19 at 23:00

  21. To add on to 3): yes, Whine-Subs does exist. I am also eager to read your response, Exor.

    2012/10/19 at 23:01

  22. posts posts posts

    2012/10/19 at 23:01

  23. Yeah, nobody needs perfect grammar and punctuation (especially on WordPress comments). I’m sure I’ve made many comments of an inferior quality to even that in question 20…

    The thing with Hadena is that they’re actually doing a disservice to society. Although fluent/native speakers can understand even DUWANG-quality subs, the same is not true of those struggling to learn English. By watching Hadena’s subs (perhaps even in an attempt to learn English), they are slowly absorbing the many grammatical errors within their script. Eventually, not only do they ‘master’ a grotesquely misshapen English, but they also believe in Hadena’s grammatical accuracy – leading to the prevalence of misspelled and ungrammatical comments left by Hadena fans. It really is a crime against English.

    P.S. no, stay her we half post very god in onew; i promissing

    2012/10/19 at 23:11

  24. shi0nmaku

    true~ Grammars are made to be corrected by Editors not translators, translators only translate it to the literal meaning and the Editor fixes the sentence like 「何よいきなり?!」 which means literally is What is it all of a sudden, if the editor seems it has a wrong grammar, they change it.

    That’s how grammars are made wrong or corrected, it’s not about the TL, it’s about the Editors

    2012/10/19 at 23:29

  25. As I explicitly mentioned thrice previously, this post deals only with the grammatical abilities of arashi0 and dragon132004 on the Hadena website. There is no mention of their translation/timing/editing abilities whatsoever in this post.

    2012/10/20 at 00:03

  26. The Kenosha Kid

    If this kind of grammar (or even worse) were found on the blogs for UTW or Mazui or any number of revered fansub groups, we’d all probably chuckle and then not care as long as the subs don’t have these sorts of problems. But with Hadena, this sort of thing isn’t an exception: it’s a symptom of a larger disease—Hadena has been hopelessly lazy with the English language, and they don’t even seem to be aware of it, the bastards! And until they’re aware of the many, many ways in which they fail to properly use the language that they ostensibly wish to translate into (ways which we can now see go far beyond the mere quality of their subtitles), they’ll never be able to understand the Sub Way, and I’ll have to Eat Fresh elsewhere.

    Making fun of Hadena mays sort of serve an overall purpose, though. By using them as a scapegoat, we have a horror story at the ready for any subbing group that lets the quality of their subs slip even a little bit. Can’t put together a sentence that even sounds like English? Miss not only the tone, but even the literal meaning of the source line? Don’t capitalize, don’t punctuate? Careful, folks—you wouldn’t want to look like Hadena, would you? We’ve got an unambiguously bad example of fansubbing, a wonderful way of showing all the fansubbers out there quite clearly what they are not to do, and we can hope that whining and complaining about this will drive the overall quality of fansubs in general in the right direction. And if we can in the process get Hadena off their lazy asses to start whipping their subs into shape, all the better! (And, even more optimistically, though perhaps a bit more far-fetchedly: drawing attention to cases of bad English in this context might help some folks improve their English in other parts of their lives.)

    With grammar in general, I revert to something I’ve heard said about Picasso: you’ve got to know the rules before you can break them. Picasso knew the rules. Hadena’s members, it seems just don’t. And that’s sorta disconcerting. (Though if their blog posts showed an abundance of good grammar and good English, would that make their fansubs avant-garde?! Hm…)

    2012/10/20 at 00:34

  27. shi0nmaku

    well arashi0 is a translator and dragon is a {timer, karaokefx, distribution, and a typesetter,} so how come dragon get’s also corrected in grammars? XD I don’t see the point, since he doesn’t type anything except on posts, haha.

    2012/10/20 at 00:44

  28. The Kenosha Kid

    Side-note: What exactly do you have for formatting comments here? Is it just HTML5 or something?

    2012/10/20 at 01:17

  29. What I’m saying is, I’ve arbitrarily chosen comments from Hadena because of their infamy. If Hadena was similarly infamous but not a subgroup, I might still choose their comments. I don’t choose comments only from editors, because their position doesn’t matter.

    2012/10/20 at 01:20

  30. Making fun of Hadena always serves a purpose: for fun. Dunno how much I succeeded with this, though. I always get a good chuckle from Dark_Sage’s Hadena reviews (more from Hadena than from Dark_Sage; sometimes, his comments just detract from Hadena’s ridiculous editing). Nevertheless, like Exor said, Hadena may be improving (I have no first-hand knowledge of this, though).

    Here’s also an interesting segment about authorial intent. If we didn’t know of Picasso’s intentions or extensive artistic training, we might perceive cubism as the product of an inept lunatic. However, because we know that Picasso’s not randomly scribbling on canvas, we see new perspectives on his work. We don’t know of Hadena’s intentions – are they subbing for real, or facetiously? Thus, even if they did intend to do all this to ‘troll’ us, since we don’t know, their intent doesn’t matter at all. The DUWANG subs for JoJo is pretty avant-garde, though. I hope you’ve already watched it.

    P.S. We use whatever the WordPress standard is. I know that CSS is used for styling, though.

    P.P.S. pfffffft I’ll have to steal that subway joke sometime

    2012/10/20 at 01:27

  31. shi0nmaku

    oh I see :D さあー, well just keep up on what you guys are doing and it seems like you guys are having fun on it ^_^

    2012/10/20 at 01:41

  32. Thanks for all your comments~!

    2012/10/20 at 03:16

  33. The coding is whatever standard WordPress coding is. I think all HTML tags are supported, though WordPress prefers <strong> tags to <b>, <em> to <i>, etc.

    2012/11/12 at 05:03