Facebook recently introduced a new feature that enables users to translate posts and comments inline on Facebook Pages. The new feature, which is powered by Bing Translator, will quickly translate a post when a user clicks the “Translate” button.
After a Facebook user clicks the translate button, a popout window appears and Bing Translator will translate the comment (machine translation). In addition to displaying machine translations, users will have the ability to correct or submit translations (community translation). If a user-submitted translation receives enough positive votes from the Page’s visitors, the user’s translation will automatically replace the machine translation.
Facebook posted the following regarding this new feature:
“Today we launched a new translation tool that enables people to translate posts directly inline on Facebook Pages through Bing Translate. With this service, we are making it even easier for people to enjoy Page content on Facebook regardless of the languages that they know.”
Page admins can activate the translation service by visiting the “Translations” section of “Your Settings.” On this page, admins can choose whether content is translated by machine, by machine and community, or by machine, community, and admin. In addition, on the settings page, admins can also disable the feature or block abusive translations.
Currently, the translate button only appears to Spanish, Korean, Japanese, Russian, Taiwanese, and Chinese users. However, with Bing Translator currently supporting 37 languages, Facebook probably has plans to add additional languages in the near future.
To stay in touch with their customers, many companies and international brands have had to maintain multiple Pages for different countries and languages. The new translation feature will help international brands communicate with all of their customers through one Page.
At this time, the new translator only works on public Pages and Facebook has not indicated when the feature will be available on personal profiles.