Have you ever tried to follow a foreign news station on Twitter? Maybe your Italian is basic or your French is just so-so, but neither is fluent enough to understand all those tweets that go out. Well, Twitter feels your pain. That's why the social network has (quietly) rolled out a new translation tool today.
Twitter wants to unite the world through tweets. By letting users in any country use the site's new translation tools, tweets from around the world can be heard, seen, and clearly understood. This is more than a way to connect with your neighbors - it opens up a whole world of communication with amazing potential.
The World Awaits
Twitter is using Bing's translation tools to bring tweet translations to Twitter users (say that three times fast!). Twitter hasn't made the new translation tool widely accessible, though. Not all Twitter users have access to the tool right now (which is why Twitter was quiet about the release of this new tool). Those that do have the tool might not even know it either.
In order to use the tool, if you can use it, you have to click on a tweet's time stamp, go to the original page of the tweet, and then click on the 'view translation' option. Once that's done, a condensed version of the tweet will appear below the original tweet. The idea here is to make translations simpler. There's more to this tool, though.
Hearing Real Voices
It's one thing to hear a translated and chewed up version of news that's happening in other countries. You can sit back and watch the news at night, for example, or read about foreign affairs through online newspapers. But, getting real-time tweets from news outlets in other countries is a whole different way to view the world. Now, you can translate those tweets with the tap of a button.
The ability to translate tweets isn't something new. Prior to this tool, it was possible to copy and paste a tweet into Google Translate, for example. Twitter has simply made this easier. But, easier is what many people want, and that's really a good thing. Twitter has long been known as the social network that connects people through news and gives the world a voice. Now, that voice can be translated into many different languages.
More About This New Tool
Twitter hasn't officially commented on the new tool yet. Twitter reps have only stated that the new tool exists, and that the tool will be available soon, but that's really it. When you will have access to this tool or what else it might do is a mystery.
The potential for a Twitter translation tool is great. It's also a really amazing way for people to see what's happening in other countries in real-time. If you use Twitter, now might be the time to check out some foreign news outlets. Soon, you will be able to see what people in other countries are tweeting with the click of a 'translate' button.