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Group Be Welcome Translators

Purpose of the Translation Team

The Translation Team wants to ease the access to our website for members and visitors, regardless of their English skills. Our goal is to translate the complete site to as many languages as possible, starting with the most spoken languages of our members. Want to see BeWelcome in your own language? Request the translation rights from one of the team coordinators and give a hand to make it come true!

Guidelines for the Application to the team

You'd like to support BeWelcome's Internationalization by volunteering for this team? please read carefully this section:

In order to join the team you should comply to the following requisites:

  1. Have a filled out profile (including language information) complying with all terms of use.
  2. Be able to read/understand in a good level English as this is the main language of the site.
  3. Be able to write/translate to another language (your mother tongue or other language you are expert) that you will aply to translate. (you will need a computer keyboard capable of writing in the language to translate to, this is specially important for languages that don't have a latin alphabet.)
  4. Have your own profile translated to another language besides english, e.g. your mother language.
  5. Accept the Volunteer code of conduct.

Additionally consider:

  1. use a web-browser that is capable of spell-checking, like firefox, and set it up for the language under translation. languages for firefox
  2. if the language you want to translate is not shown in the currently available languages we will have to add it. For this we need you to tell us the translation for the phrase "Welcome to signup page" in that language and then we can add it. You must commit to doing a minimum amount of translation of the new language.
  3. Join the translators group and activate the preference to receive the e-mail notifications.
  4. Once you get your rights you can also join the general volunteers group
  5. Also: you can check in the related groups if there is an specific group for translators in your language, you can join too. If there is no group for your language feel free to create one and add it to the related groups.

How to join

Please send a message to one of the translations coordinators (pauloaguia or sammiekong ) to request for translation rights, in which you describe your motivation for joining the team and the language of your choice. In that message, please confirm that you comply with the guidelines that are above and how much time you can devote to the tasks. There is no minimum but we need to know your availability.

Getting Started

First, you can only translate when you're logged in. To log in, go to the www.bewelcome.org page, enter your username and password and click on the "login" button. If you don't have a bewelcome account you must create one and join the team as explained above :)

As a translator, use the site in your language of speciality. To switch from the default "English" to your language, go to the bottom of any page of the site. There is a list of languages. If your language is not listed there, it means that the admins have not created it successfully. You can post in this group about it.

Translation Tool

When you are a BeWelcome translator, after you log in to your account, there will be three new links at the bottom right of all pages: "browse", "translate" and "edit". If you don't see those links it means that the admins have not given you the correct access rights. You can post about it in this group. The easiest way to start translating is by using these three links:


This one shows you the site just how it would look if you were NOT a translator.


This one makes little purple tag appear near anything that needs to be translated. Typically, if a new feature was recently programmed, it will be only in English and those little purple tags will be everywhere.

Also, if something is already translated, but someone edits the English version, then the phrase will get a little green tag.


This one makes a little tag appear near EVERY phrase on the page. It makes it really crowded! That's in case you see a phrase on the website that is already translated, but you would like to put a better translation instead. Then you click on edit and a little light green tag should appear near that word, along with all the other words of the page.

Ok, I clicked the tag. What then?

Well, clicking a tag should pop up a new tab or window in your web browser. The new tab, or window, will have the following fields:

  • Code: That tells you the unique name of that phrase in our database. It's usually a very unattractive title like "groups_welcomeMessage". It's unattractive for a reason: Don't touch it :)
  • Description: That's a description of the word, what this word is supposed to mean.
  • English source: That tells you the English version of the word.
  • Translation: That's where you write the translation for that word. The field looks big (if you're translating a short phrase, as it is in 90% of the cases). But sometimes (10% of the cases as you've probably already calculated), we need to translate a long phrase. When we translate the Frequently Asked Questions or something fleshy like that.
  • Languages: That's the language you're using. If you are a translator for more than one language, be careful with this one. Don't post Turkish words to the Japanese version :)

Use the "submit" button to complete a translation. The "find" button is only for when you're looking for a specific code.

Is there a way to find the stuff that still has to be translated?

There are more ways however to find wordcodes: Volunteer tab -> Translations -> Actions Here you find a few other options:

  • Find Words, search wordcodes by (part of) their code, description or translation.
  • All in <your language> - A list of all translatable items with buttons to add or edit translations
  • Only missing - A list of all items that haven't been translated yet.
  • Update needed - A list of all items where the English text has been changed after the translation

The last three lists are by default limited to items that have not been created very recently (these are still prone to changes) and not been updated for a long time (these have a relative high risk of not being in use anymore). You can remove this limitation by clicking on the link on top of the link, but beware that you make sure to translate items that are really in use!

Preferred working order (each time continue until the list is empty)

  • Update needed, shortlist
  • Only missing, shortlist
  • Update needed, longlist
  • Only missing, longlist

Congratulations if you made it until here, your language should now be 100% translated! Relax for a minute, stretch your fingers and have a drink. But make sure to come back soon, as items are updated or newly created all the time!


Newsletters are a special case, they need translation but are not visible on the website.

You need the code name that is usually anounced in the translators group forum (please subscribe to the following forum thread to keep updated of the translating tasks that need to be done http://www.bewelcome.org/forums/s2330 )

These are the steps:

  • go to http://www.bewelcome.org/admin/word/
  • type the wordcode and click the button 'find'
  • make the translation. This is generally a big amount of text, the best is to copy it to a text-editor (such as Notepad, don't use programs such as Write or Word) and translate it there. Also make sure that you let others know you're working on it, to avoid two people doing the same thing.
  • dont' forget to translate the subject too (same procedure)

Where to start

A very good place to start translating are the following pages:

Those two pages are never visited by logged-in members and receive fewer translator updates than the rest of the site. On the other hand, they are the first thing our users see. So, top priority.

Other important pages:

These are used to help users and it is important that the translations are updated.

''' Please subscribe to the following forum thread to keep updated of the translating tasks that need to be done http://www.bewelcome.org/forums/s2330 '''


Check the Glossary to your particular language so you can get produce a coherent translation with what has already been done so far by the other translators for your language. If there is not yet a Glossary to your language feel free to create one (Edit this page and add a link at the appropriate place.

Info for team coordinator

How to enable a new language?

  • go to the "AdminWord" page
  • find the code "WelcomeToSignup"
  • In the language field, type in the ISO 639-1 short code for the language. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_ISO_639-1_codes
  • Fill out the translation field in the respective language (you probably need to ask the translator or google)
  • submit
  • Now you should see the new language in the footer.