Yet another social network – so what’s special about this one?
Finnish-created XIHA is the world’s first multilingual social network. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn do offer content in different languages, but this is supported through a monolingual implementation – you have to choose one language for the user interface, and would mostly update your status & post comments, etc in that language. Multilingual people are therefore not easily able to fully express themselves, as to choose one language might alienate friends and followers who do not understand it.
Many people in this situation tend to adopt the language of the country they are living in while online, and occasionally post updates in their mother tongue, but this is far from ideal. Language is an important part of identity, and with more and more people having spent time living in a different country from the one they were born in, we are all more likely to have friends and connections overseas. Many people communicate in more than one language in life, so it’s time there was a social network to allow them to do so online.
The XIHA interface is localised in over 60 languages, and you can view content in any of these. The main difference from other networks is that it employs real-time translation. By using a deeply embedded version of Google translate, as well as human translators (who, incidentally, are paid in hard cash), chat sessions and update streams can be translated instantly. A great example of how to bring together machine and human translation.
What XIHA means for social networking:
The potential for this network is huge – it will be interesting to see how it develops and gains members, and if its inventors will embrace the commercial opportunities at a later date.
Sign up for your profile at www.xihalife.com.
If you want to use social media to connect with your global audience, we at Web-Translations can help. Multilingual social media engagement provides an excellent channel for customer feedback and can really help build your brand overseas – ask us how: sales[at]web-translations.co.uk, Tel: +44 (0) 1924 360460.
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