Which AIDSvideos.org Script Should I Translate First?

Simple: you're a volunteer. It's completely your choice!

The basics: doing a single good translation is better than doing zero perfect ones!

Seriously, we are very grateful for the generous donation of time our translation volunteers have made to the AIDSvideos.org project. We know that our volunteers are busy and have lives, jobs, bills to pay, etc., so we appreciate however much or little time a given volunteer is able to contribute. In case you're wondering where to start, here are some thoughts for your consideration.

First, don't bite off a really huge piece and then give up in frustration. If you're unsure how easy or hard this will be, pick a short script, translate that one, and see how it goes. We'd much prefer to get a single finished translation of a short script than a half-finished translation of a longer script.

Second, don't feel like you have to translate them all. That would be a huge amount of work for any volunteer. Even a translation of a single script is a huge help. And translating one script doesn't obligate you to translate any other script. It's fine if you translate one, make that your contribution to HIV prevention education, and stop there!

Third, don't let perfectionism discourage you from doing a translation. Translation is an art, not a science. There is no such thing as a perfect translation. Obviously, we want to be careful to ensure that the scientific and medical facts about HIV/AIDS are translated correctly, but if your fluency in the target language is less than perfect (or if you've lived away from that culture for a long time), don't obsess about whether your usage is the most idiomatic or your choice of words is the most current. We generally try to get review feedback from a native speaker after a translation is complete, and the scripts are all posted on the Internet where others can review them and suggest improvements. We'd rather get a translation that is accurate and good than get nothing at all because a volunteer feared their work would be less than perfect.

Want to start with a short script?

Our shortest scripts are Preventing Sexual Transmission of HIV (6 min 25 sec), HIV Prevention for Men Who Have Sex With Men (MSM) (4 min), and Preventing the Spread of HIV Through Injection Drug Use (3 min 36 sec), and Did I Just Contract HIV? Symptoms of Primary HIV Infection (4 min 49 sec). Any of these is a good one to start with if you feel intimidated by doing your first translation and want to start with a short one.

Want to do the most important scripts?

Brief Introduction to HIV and AIDS (8 minutes long) and Top Ten Myths About HIV/AIDS (9 minutes long) are arguably our two most important scripts:
Did I Just Contract HIV? Symptoms of Primary HIV Infection is rapidly emerging as a really important video. Only nine months after publication, it has more than twice as many YouTube views (43,700+ as of 4/08) as Brief Introduction to HIV and AIDS does after 21 months. It seems that a lot of people go to YouTube to learn about HIV/AIDS after they think they may have been exposed to HIV or when they're concerned they might be showing symptoms. We'd prefer that they went immediately to a medical doctor for a checkup, but we want to make sure they can find accurate information if they do look on YouTube and, within the video, encourage them to get a checkup.

Because of the widespread use of crystal methamphetamine, Crystal Meth and HIV: The Connection (v2.0) is also emerging as a really important and widely-viewed video (16,700+ YouTube views as of 4/08).

Want to do several translations as efficiently as possible?

If you're feeling more ambitious, you may want to translate the longer script Introduction to HIV and AIDS (v2.0) first. It is our longest and most-comprehensive general script. Brief Introduction to HIV and AIDS, Preventing Sexual Transmission of HIV, HIV Prevention for Men Who Have Sex With Men (MSM), and Preventing the Spread of HIV Through Injection Drug Use are all shorter, targeted derivatives of that longer script, so once you've translated Introduction to HIV and AIDS (v2.0), you can quickly translate the other four through copy-and-paste.

Which scripts are most relevant to the developing world?

The following scripts are of greatest relevance to developing countries. Therefore, if you're translating into a language that is primarily spoken in developed nations (e.g. Swedish), these scripts are lower priorities: Preventing MTCT of HIV/AIDS in Developing Countries, Wash Your Hands: Recommendations for Developing Countries, Preventing Waterborne Illnesses, the Major Cause of Death In Developing Countries, Beyond ABC: Newer Approaches to Preventing HIV/AIDS, and Ending Gender Inequality: A Key to Stopping HIV. (Note: as we state in the script, we are NOT suggesting that gender inequality is a problem that is exclusive to developing countries. However, much of the content of that script relates to the importance of this problem as a contributor to HIV transmission in developing nations.) Conversely, if you're translating into a language primarily spoken in developing countries, these scripts are higher priorities.

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