The ATA Chronicle - July/August 2020 - 28

REMOTE SIMULTANEOUS INTERPRETING HUBS
OR PLATFORMS: WHAT'S THE BEST OPTION? continued

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES
Supiano, Beckie Supiano. "Why
Is Zoom So Exhausting?" The Chronicle
of Higher Education (April 23, 2020),
https://bit.ly/Supiano-Zoom.
International Association of
Conference Interpreters Guidelines
for Distance Interpreting,
https://bit.ly/AIIC-distance-interpreting.
International Association of Conference
Interpreters Technical Study on RSI,
https://bit.ly/AIIC-RSI-study.

loudspeakers. All of this can result in
latency issues.
In summary, RSI platforms will require
further enhancements to become fully
interpreter-friendly and client-effective.

SO, WHAT'S THE BEST OPTION?
Simultaneous interpreting is a
complex cognitive process where the
interpreter's focus should remain solely
on the communicative task. Adding
technical variables means increasing the
interpreter's cognitive load, which can
have a toll not only on the interpreter's
health but also on their performance.
For the time being, only hubs (not all,
of course) comply with the International
Association of Conference Interpreters'
DI requirements, which makes them the
best option for DI, although nothing will
ever replace the beauty of being onsite.
However, RSI platforms should be
given a chance. They can be an excellent
solution for short events lasting less
than three hours and involving a small
number of participants. This could
encourage company teams located
around the globe to meet more often
and eventually increase the demand
for qualified interpreters. To become
fully effective, though, these platforms
need to be further improved to fulfill
the standards of the International
Organization for Standardization and
28

The ATA Chronicle | July/August 2020

guarantee the right working conditions
for interpreters. In this regard, vendors
should get qualified interpreters onboard
from the beginning to ensure that
RSI platforms meet their expectations
and don't just take into account the
vendor's profitability or the end client's
cost savings. If we want to maintain a
high level of professional service, the
interpreter's opinion matters.
Finally, RSI calls for customer
education now. Interpreters must ensure
that clients understand what they're
embarking upon when they want to
hold a meeting or an event through
a hub or over a platform. And most
importantly, they must understand that
an interpreter's output is only as good as
the input.
RSI is a threat and an opportunity.
History shows that resisting change only
places us behind those who embrace
it. So, let's consider RSI an opportunity
and contribute to making it a good
solution for clients and another tool for
interpreters in an ever-changing world.
Never has the world come to a halt
as it has recently. No doubt, these are
turbulent times, but as the management
consultant, educator, and author Peter
Drucker said: "The greatest danger
in times of turbulence is not the
turbulence, it is to act with yesterday's
logic." If we want to continue promoting
the best professional standards and

safeguard our industry, we must keep
abreast of the new scenario, and this
may require applying tomorrow's logic
to today's new context.
NOTES
1.	

ISO 2018 "Simultaneous Interpreting-
Quality and Transmission of Sound and
Image Input-Requirements."
https://bit.ly/simultaneous-quality.

2.	

ISO 20109 "Simultaneous Interpreting
Delivery Platforms-Requirements
and Recommendations,"
https://bit.ly/ISO-simultaneous-interpreting.

Silvana G. Chaves, CT has 27
years of experience working as
an English<>Spanish (ATAcertified: English>Spanish),
Italian>English, and
Italian>Spanish translator
and interpreter in Latin America and Europe. She
is the owner of Estudio Chaves, a translation
agency with offices in Buenos Aires and Madrid.
Currently, she works as a conference interpreter
based in Madrid, providing services to leading
companies in the private sector and to European
Commission bodies. She has a degree in legal
translation from the Universidad Nacional de
Córdoba and a degree in conference interpreting
from the Universidad del Salvador (Argentina).
Contact: chaves@estudio-chaves.com.
www.atanet.org


https://www.bit.ly/Supiano-Zoom https://www.bit.ly/AIIC-distance-interpreting https://www.bit.ly/AIIC-RSI-study https://www.bit.ly/simultaneous-quality https://www.bit.ly/ISO-simultaneous-interpreting http://www.atanet.org

The ATA Chronicle - July/August 2020

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