Show us a day that ends in “y,” and we’ll show you a #GoogleTranslateFail. It’s a perennially entertaining source of fun whenever robots attempt to interpret natural human language. You know — the gift that keeps on giving. And actually, when you translate “gift that keeps on giving” into Vietnamese, you get “những món quà không ngừng đưa ra,” which then translates into “the gift is constantly offered” in English…or maybe just “No Delicious Delicious” when translated from English to Vietnamese again.
That’s not to say that we can’t give credit where credit is due: translation technology has certainly come a long way over the last few years. But it’s still a long ways off from being able to reliably grasp nuance and context, which is more than half the battle where communication is concerned.
Here, for your entertainment, is a roundup of our favorite Google Translate fails. And remember: friends don’t let friends use the free autotranslate feature.
1. That time workplace safety equipment got a craving for pumpkin spice lattes.
(For the uninitiated, “otoño” means “autumn” in Spanish).
Found a Spanish written document on “Fall Protection” but it says “otoño protección” 😂💀 #GoogleTranslateFail
— Erika Santos (@Erika_JSantos) June 6, 2017
2. That time your Nyonya dumplings were served a little too fresh.
3. That time the Somali language contained the mystery of the human genome.
— Zannah Salter (@Zannah_Du) April 25, 2017
4. That time it wasn’t necessarily obvious that you were exaggerating when you said “this sauce is like crack.”
— Chris_in_Georgia (@Hello_MOTO2016) April 6, 2017
5. That time vegetables needed a content advisory rating.
Don’t ask how translating “broccoli rabe” from Galician into Castillian Spanish could go so wrong. The Local, an English-language Spanish news site, can explain.
6. That time you had no idea what any of this means, but you still felt bad for the goat.
— EgoLibris (@egolibris) May 17, 2017
7. That time matcha sounded weirdly profound.
— Koyu Matcha GreenTea (@KoyuMatcha) January 18, 2017
8. That time Google wasn’t in the mood for games.
— Yon Dotan (@yonatandotan) November 10, 2015
9. That time you laughed and it was really awkward.
10. That time you tried to explain that you were on a juice cleanse, but you came off sounding like an even bigger fashion victim.
11. That time you tried to tell someone to “just wipe that dirt off your shoulder,” but your suggestion came with much graver consequences than intended.
12. That time you realized why State Farm could never be a good neighbor in Kenya.
13. That time you panicked at the disco, only to panic over what Google Translate just regurgitated.
14. That time you probably meant to say something else.
15. That time “Jay-Z” wasn’t a universally understood language.