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Testing to prevent bad translation: Brand name conversions in Chinese-English contexts

Author

Listed:
  • Kum, Doreen
  • Lee, Yih Hwai
  • Qiu, Cheng

Abstract

This research investigates bilingual consumers' evaluation of brand name translations from logographic-Chinese to alphabetic-English language systems. The research examines four possible methods of translation -- semantic, phonetic, phonosemantic and Hanyu Pinyin. Consumers' chronic differences in language proficiency levels and the presence of situational primes relating to phonological or semantic processing jointly influence preferences for the translation methods. In addition to findings consistent with the premise that phonological/semantic processing is effective in alphabetic/logographic languages, this research shows that consumers who are strong in Chinese and weak in English prefer Pinyin translations across all conditions.

Suggested Citation

  • Kum, Doreen & Lee, Yih Hwai & Qiu, Cheng, 2011. "Testing to prevent bad translation: Brand name conversions in Chinese-English contexts," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 64(6), pages 594-600, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jbrese:v:64:y:2011:i:6:p:594-600
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    References listed on IDEAS

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