In early January, Scientific American editor Mark Fischetti noticed that our video “What Happens to Your Body after You Die?” had 466,000 views on YouTube. Well, now it has more than 989,000. Holy cow. At first, we had no idea what was happening, but it struck us that maybe we should investigate what, indeed, was happening, so we might learn from it.
(To watch this video with subtitles, turn on closed captions by clicking on the “cc” button under the screen, and then click on the gear to change the Settings to select a language.)
Next, Online Managing Editor Philip Yam looked into YouTube analytics and found that the U.S. blip was from the IFLS site (Google it). But most of the new plays were coming from Hungary, where the video is embedded on two web sites. Most Hungarians don’t speak English (fun fact: Latin was the nation’s official language into the mid-19th century. So, dice quod ad tuum Latin magister.) How were they enjoying our video? In their native language, via our crowd-sourced translation community on Amara! K?sz?n?m (thank you) to our Hungarian translators on Amara (especially to S?ndor Nagy), and to all 1,064 of our translators on Amara who have translated 81 videos into 71 languages.
Digging deeper on Amara, we saw that “What Happens to Your Body After You Die?” and “Why Does Bonking Beer Bottles Create Foam?” are the most translated videos of all our posted videos there–with 27 languages for both.
After that, it’s 13 languages for “Why Hasn’t the Universe Collapsed into a Giant Black Hole?” and 11 languages for “How Do We Determine the Edge of the Universe?”
Here are the 27 languages into which “What Happens to Your Body…” has been translated:
Arabic, English (original), Chinese (simplified), Chinese (traditional), French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Hindi, Hungarian (yay!), Indonesian (incomplete), Italian, Japanese, Malay (incomplete), Pashto, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Portugeuse (Brazilian), Russian (incomplete), Serbo-Croation, Spanish, Spanish (Mexican), Thai, Turkish, Ukrainian and Vietnamese.
So big thanks to all our translators on Amara, including our most active translators Igor Padilha dos Prazeres, Natalie Crino, Eduardo Trunci, Thuy Chau Vu, tdavrcra and Mira Kra?mia. Our community includes 218 members who have indicated that they can translate videos for us into Spanish, 133 members who can translate videos into French, 100 into British, 50 into Chinese (simplified), 14 into Persian and 13 into Dutch. That’s just a slice of the language diversity in our Amara community. Come on over to Amara to join in on the translating fun with our Scientific American community.