The importance of the mother tongue

Language is all about association: the association of meaning with sounds or groups of sounds (otherwise known as words), and the meaning of words in association with the context of their use.

Dictionaries can give a false picture of the ease with which one can go from one language to another.  An equals-sign can seldom be set between the meanings associated with a word from one language and those associated with a word from another language.  The only clear exceptions to this rule are the numbers above one.  And some meanings simply cannot be translated fully from one language to another.

It is also easier to understand a language than to speak it, to read it than to write it.  So the people who have the best chance of making sure that the meaning of a translated or corrected text is as close as possible to the original are themselves native speakers of the target language.  They are also the people who are most likely to be able to put sentences together in a way that sounds right to other native speakers.

That is why English support uses only native speakers.



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