警惕!5中国译员在日本被捕 版权陷阱要注意

来源:译世界 作者:Yee君 时间:2018/02/08



  At the start of February, five Chinese nationals were arrested in Japan for translating manga and games. The five suspects were allegedly part of a large translating group that distributes Chinese-translated Japanese media online.



  Specifics cited in news reports claim that two of the suspects are a 24-year-old female research student and a 25-year-old female graduate student. They were arrested for translating a manga series and character dialogues for a video game. Japanese police are looking into other translations of copyrighted works the suspects are liable for, as they are part of an online group that has allegedly translated over 15,000 manga items without authorization.

  新闻报道中具体提到,其中的两名嫌疑人,一名为24岁的女研究生(译者注:research student在日本指不以修学分为目的,在教授指导下从事研究的学生),另一名为25岁的女研究生。他们因为翻译某系列漫画和某电子游戏中的人物对话而被捕。日本警方正在调查嫌疑人涉嫌对其他版权作品的翻译,被捕人员是某线上组织的成员,据称该组织在未经授权的情况下翻译了超过15,000部漫画作品。

  Reports say the suspects face up to 10 years in prison, fines worth up to JPY 10m, or both, as well as the possibility of civil lawsuits and additional levies for damages and, of course, orders to delete files.


  According to news reports, a 2013 inquiry by Japan’s Agency for Cultural Affairs found that Japanese manga, anime, and games illegally distributed to online Chinese sites amount to losses of JPY 3.8t.


  In November 2015, five people were also arrested in Japan for uploading Japanese manga chapters of ongoing series to online translation groups. They were not directly involved in translation, but rather the pipeline that leads to unauthorized translation distribution.



  ▲某漫画汉化组的网站 (图片来源:华夏经纬网 崔峻 摄)





  Translation is typically considered a derivative work. While this varies from country to country, translation is considered derivative because it exists in relation to an original work, in this case a work of literature such as a novel or poem.


  Even though it is derivative, translations are eligible for copyright as an original work. Since a translation, especially literary translation, involves considerable creative effort, labour and skill on the part of the translator, it can be registered as an original work.


  However, it is crucial to have permission from the author, company, or individual that owns the copyright of the work you are translating. This usually comes in the form of a contract with a publisher, in which the duties of each party are laid out. This is also where a translator may sign away, or fight for, their right to copyright their translation and to royalties.


  If the work exists in the public domain then a translation automatically retains copyright as an original work. Generally, the copyright for a work of literature expires 70 years after the author dies. So, if you want to translate Virgil’s Aeneid from the original Latin into Japanese you can do so without worrying about infringing on copyright.



  So, what should you do about ensuring you keep your rights to copyright and royalties? We have a few suggestions below:


  First, don’t sign away your right to copyright or to being recognized for your translation. This would mean the publisher could exclude your name from the published editions of the book, as if it magically translated itself.


  Negotiate and push for your right to royalties. It is worth at least asking to receive a portion of the royalties. Typically, a translator can expect to get 1-3% of the royalties. If you don’t think this is much you’re right, but keep in mind that authors may get anywhere from 6-25% depending on the format of the book (hardback, paperback, e-book, etc.) with e-books typically bringing in the highest royalty rate for authors. You can use these facts as negotiating tools – if the author is getting a higher percentage on the e-book, why can’t you get a higher percentage as well? If the publisher or the author refuses, at least you have gained some practice in negotiating for the future.


  Make sure the royalties include worldwide publication. Let’s say you translate a book into English for a U.S. publisher and then that publisher sells the rights to the book in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand and those publishers decide to keep your translation. If your contract is limited to U.S. sales then you are missing out on earning potential in other English speaking countries.


  Emphasize your commitment to the profession. Translating is not something you do for fun. While you may find translating to be fun and interesting work, you are also a professional and have a vested interest in gaining recognition and proper payment for your work. This might seem obvious, but you never know how the publisher or author is viewing you or your work.


  英文来源:Slator, Bookworm Translations


分类:翻译业内动态 标签:版权 中国译员 漫画翻译 游戏 双语  | 收藏


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