Proposal: Translation Style Per Type of Content (polyglots)

This is a proposal to augment the General Expectations in the Polyglots Handbook.

As WordPress continues to grow as a project, our needs for iteration also increase. After a few conversations with other Contributors, I have this proposal.

Polyglot teams should continue to translate literally (word for word) for code and documentation. However, marketing copy is meant to be persuasive in nature. Because of that, it is frequently repetitive (strategically) and contains colloquialisms to invite the reader to continue reading. This type of copy should be translated thought for thought instead of word for word. Polyglot teams should be empowered to use their expertise with colloquialisms to continue to make WordPress relevant to an ever-growing user base.

I believe that this strategy fits into the current expectations to translate organically with the same level of formality or informality. However, using slang or colloquialisms may be appropriate for marketing copy.

Current Expectations:

Don’t translate literally, translate organically:
As a translator, you undoubtedly know that each language is unique. Given that, try to avoid composing your translation in the same structure as the original English stringString A string is a translatable part of the software. A translation consists of a multitude of localized strings., while sounding natural and still conveys the same message.
Try to keep the same level of formality (or informality):
Exactly what level of formality or informality to use for each message in your target language is something you and your team will have to figure out on your own, but WordPress messages (informational messages in particular) tend to have a politely informal tone in English. Try to accomplish the equivalent in the target language, within your cultural context.
Don’t use slang or audience-specific terms:
Refrain from using colloquialisms that only a certain group of readers will understand. If the uninitiated blogger were to install WordPress in your language, would they know what the term means? Words like pingbackPingback A pingback is a special type of comment that's created when you link to another blog post, as long as the other blog is set to accept pingbacks. Pingback allows you to notify other bloggers that you have linked to their article on your website. Although there are some minor technical differences, a trackback is basically the same thing as a pingback., trackback, and feed are exceptions to this rule; they’re terminology that are typically difficult to translate, and many translators choose to leave in English.