You, Ah, Look Pretty? Localization of Online Dating Websites

November 19, 2007 at 5:27 pm | Posted in Globalization | 3 Comments

Localizing web content involves more than just translation. As any number of books (like The Culturally Customized Web Site: Customizing Web Sites for the Global Marketplace), articles, or my upcoming report on content globalization will tell you, getting the cultural nuances just right is critical to make sure you sell your message. To take an extreme example, just consider online dating. ENLASO did. Yes, ENLASO, a localization service provider (LSP), is offering a consulting service for internationalization and localization of online dating websites:

Social Networking and Online Dating Language Solutions

At their heart, social networking and online dating Web sites are very relationship oriented: the “product” is the online customer (or Web site member), who is directly involved in “packaging” and virtually “delivering” personal content to another customer. As a result, localization challenges for such a site are very different from traditional multilingual commercial Web applications. Cost-effectively serving such Web content globally, while preserving individual target locale protocols of interactive dating and romance, requires a highly specialized team.

The tone of communications and standards for appropriate social demeanor in social networking and online dating can be radically different in Asian markets from what is considered the norm in Western markets. Pull down menus with gender and pronouns can prove to be surprisingly complex in some languages.

Many online dating or social networking Web sites have databases of hobbies, professions, memberships, etc. to help flesh out a user’s profile. ENLASO can advise you when additional content (e.g. new professions) are appropriate for new target locales. Our linguistic input will help ensure that your Web site is culturally appropriate for all of your intended locales.

Whether your botched translation and cultural understanding cause damage to your brand, a foreign affairs faux pax, or a serious disconnect on dating expectations, it’s an avoidable mistake. As for the rest of the perils of online dating sites, you’re on your own.



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  1. Interesting article. I found an interesting survey about online dating that you might like.

    • Yeah you are right! This is very informative post.

      “At their heart, social networking and online dating Web sites are very relationship oriented:”

      Online dating connects people who seek for their soul mate who are coming from the other side of the world.


  2. […] they will not discuss how to properly design and implement an international online dating service, our audience will learn a lot about creating, managing, and delivering a truly global customer […]

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