DRAFT - ICANN Language Services Policy and Procedures
|Comment/Reply Periods (*)||Important Information Links|
|Comment Open:||18 May 2012|
|Comment Close:||2 July 2012|
|Close Time (UTC):||23:59 UTC||Public Comment Announcement|
|Reply Open:||3 July 2012||To Submit Your Comments (Forum)|
|Reply Close:||1 August 2012||View Comments Submitted|
|Close Time (UTC):||23:59 UTC||Report of Public Comments|
|Originating Organization:||ICANN Communications Department|
|Categories/Tags:||Policy Processes; Transparency/Accountability; Reviews/Improvements; Participation; Events/Conferences|
|Purpose (Brief):||ICANN is opening a public comment forum for the draft Language Services Policy and Procedures. Community members are asked to provide feedback on the proposed document. ICANN Language Services provides support for translation, simultaneous interpretation, teleconference interpretation, transcription (of recorded sessions) and RTT (real-time-transcription, also known as scribing).|
|Current Status:||Draft ICANN Language Services Policy and Procedures open for public comment.|
Comments will be accepted in this forum and in continued interaction with the community and staff. Once the comment and reply periods have ended, ICANN will review community feedback and post an assessment of comments received.
The Board Committee on Public Participation will then submit the policy to the ICANN Board with its recommendation.
|Staff Contact:||Christina M. Rodriguez||Email:||email@example.com|
|Section I: Description, Explanation, and Purpose|
The provision of language services is intended to facilitate access to ICANN and participation in its work for those who do not speak or are not fluent in English.
The cost-effective provision of high quality multilingual services has two main objectives:
ICANN's language services include:
ICANN's working language is English. Its policy is to provide translation and interpretation in the six United Nations languages – currently Arabic, Chinese (Simplified), English, French, Russian and Spanish – where appropriate and taking account of budget constraints.
|Section II: Background|
|Multilingualism is essential for a global multistakeholder organization. Meetings, documents and information must be accessible in a variety of languages. To address this need, ICANN submitted a previous version of this document (then called "Translation Programme") for public comment in March 2008, and in December 2008 contracted with a localization and language industry expert (a full-time translation coordinator). This complied with the Accountability and Transparency Framework and Principles, and laid the path toward more effective engagement with stakeholders.|
|Section III: Document and Resource Links|
|DRAFT – ICANN Language Services Policy and Procedures [PDF, 349 KB]|
|Section IV: Additional Information|
(*) Comments submitted after the posted Close Date/Time are not guaranteed to be considered in any final summary, analysis, reporting, or decision-making that takes place once this period lapses.
Initial Draft for proposed ALAC comment to this PC.
PLEASE USE the Comments Section below to respond to and propose any edits to the following text.
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The ALAC and At-Large Community of ICANN, has long been a champion for the needs analysis and effective use of interpretation and translation services by ICANN and should be considered ( we believe) as a 'extensive or 'power user' / client of these services as an integral part of our routine ICANN internal and At-Large outreach activities. We further note that recommendation #9 as outlined in the Final Report of the ALAC Review Working Group on ALAC Improvements (9 June 2009). is specific " ...9. ICANN should strengthen its translation and interpretation processes" (page 6) and that there were further recommendations were made relating to 'translation services' / tools :-
(from page 18 of the Report and in support of Recommendation 22 of the independent Consultants 2008 Westlake Report )
220.127.116.11. Translation and interpretation
The WG strongly supports the need for efficient, effective translation and
interpretation processes in ICANN. At least as much as any other group in
the ICANN community, efficient, effective translation is critical to the
success of the ALAC. The translation system needs to be far more reliable
than it is at present. Establishing clear accountabilities (including some
form of Service Level Agreement) with staff and contractors is crucial if
higher standards are to be developed and maintained.
The WG recommends that the Board ask staff to review the efficiency and
effectiveness of current translation practices with a view to implementing
better translation processes and increasing funding to provide a wider
range of translation services. This is an area where ICANN should strive
for continuous improvement.
ALAC appreciates the considerable work that has clearly gone into the preparation and presentation of the DRAFT – ICANN Language Services Policy and Procedures under current public review, as a next step in the evolution of these essential services to a Global Multi-stakeholder Organisations from the then pivotal work of 2008 which resulted in the 'Translation Program' ; as well as the opportunity to make some substantive comments upon this Draft of an ICANN's Language Services Policy and Procedures.
Firstly the ALAC and At-Large agree with ICANN's provision of a cost-effective provision (though we do hold great interest in being involved in the establishment of the ROI measures for this) of high quality multilingual services with the objectives to:
• Make information about ICANN and its work accessible to those who speak languages other than English in ways that enhance participation in and the effectiveness of the multistakeholder model.
• Make ICANN more effective as a global organization.
We also appreciate the full gamete of ICANN's language services being identified as now including:
• Simultaneous interpretation
• Teleconference interpretation
• Transcription (of recoded sessions)
• Scribing (Real Time Transcription - RTT)
All of which our community makes extensive and continuing use of ( although at this stage RTT use is limited to ICANN public meetings we do see a developing opportunity for its use regionally and in our outreach and education programs)
ALAC and At-Large support the stated goal of the 'Language Service Policy (LSP) to provide us with "...high quality, consistent, timely and cost-effective services, reflecting current usage of technical terms by native speakers." ; as well as the longer term vision to offer by end 2015:
"...translation and interpretation, either automatically or on request:
• in the six official United Nations languages. Criteria for granting exceptions (either to provide additional of fewer translations) will be explicitly spelled out.1
• for all core documentation, main public meeting sessions, and select Supporting Organization and Advisory Committee conference calls.
• in five abridged versions of the English website, focusing on the core elements.
Noting that our community will no doubt be one that from time to time and specific to stated purpose requests ADDITIONAL languages beyond the 6 official UN ones (e.g. need for Portuguese text in documents used in parts of our LACRALO area etc.,)
And we most certainly endorse ICANN creating a "...a comprehensive quality control process and adoption, where appropriate, of best practices..."
Recently ALAC and At-Large activities have specifically benefited from the improvements in the provision of Language Services (LS) as outlined in the LSP that have resulted in a considerable improvement (and associated gain in our productivity and better policy development work practices) in both quality and efficiency but we could add CONSISTENCY to the list of recent improvements and benefits.
Specific to Translation:
We also recognize the current limitations of electronic tools and technologies available for our use, but do wish to insist that ICANN must keep a close watching brief (and perhaps even develop tools or be a 'beta tester') for improvements in this arena; and we do endorse the proposal to develop and conduct "...a multilingualism awareness program for current and new staff. Board members, staff and community members will sometimes be asked to help monitor the quality of translations. A translation management system allows language service providers to access previous translations, improving quality and streamlining the process...." We also appreciate the recognition that we have an extensive wealth of 'community skills and talent' that can contribute in appropriate and predictable ways to the improvements to and development of a holistic LSP to serve ICANN's community and Mission. Further the split into 'Proactive Translation' and 'On Demand' materials is welcomed and will give both guidance and clarity to our community in what it can 'expect' from ICANN's Language Services abd will be an aid to our own planning processes as the basis for a decision to translate is now well defined.
Specific to Interpretation:
ALAC and the At-Large community particularly appreciate and endorse the LSP recognition of the need to local language provision i.e. that there might be offered interpretation at these meetings in languages relevant to the host country and region. As well as the note that streaming of live sessions and interpretation issues is being addressed. We also appreciate the formal listing of the excellent support we enjoy already with the Language Services team assisting us with Interpretation at our teleconferences, as a section of the Draft ICANN LSP.
We are delighted and heartened to see that the LSP will also focus on the very important matter of Video Subtitling and would expect our community to make considerable use of this feature of future video material produced, as well as the detailed attention given to the LSP's 'Quality Control' and 'Validation Review Cycle' planning and offer our members services and support in any way that can assist with this part of the proposed ICANN Language Services programs and the proposed Language Services Policy Review in FY2014.
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