I was helping to translate this passage on the website Lang-8.com:


The great point about having used Lang-8 is that I don't have to feel ashamed about whatever mistakes I make, and I've realized that native English speakers make the same kind of mistakes when they speak english.

I am a little confused as to how だということ is being used in the quoted sentence. The writer said that I could equate it to "that." While I get that much, should I disregard or stifle an urge to relate the いう to these verbs: 言う; 云う; 謂う? Can anyone give an explantation as to how it is being used here? If I translate it literally and get "the thing/point that is said," is that incorrect? (I understand that this meaning is superfluous to the sentence)

1 Answer 1


It is clear that いう is historically related to 言う, but it has evolved into an independent expression. You should write it in hiragana as という but never using kanji like と言う, and translate it as that, but never as say.

Some other points in your translation.

  • one thing great: The Japanese passage mentions two great points. You took the construction incorrectly.
  • thing great about lang-8: It is missing the description seen in Japanese that the person actually did Lang-8. Also, if a proper noun is spelled in a certain way in the original, you should stick to it including capitalization unless it is a mistake. Should be something like thing great about having done Lang-8.
  • no matter how many mistakes: どんな間違い means "whatever (kind of) mistake", not "how (ever) many mistakes". The Japanese for the latter is どんなに間違い.
  • english: should be English.
  • I realized that ...: You have this in a wrong position. What was realized is that "even the native speakers ...", not the two points including the other one. Should be I realized that even the native speakers ....
  • the point is that: You have this in a wrong position. There are two points mentioned. It should be something like the points that are ... are, (the point) that ... and (the point) that .... It may be natural to not translate the point in front of the two points.

I don't want to be offensive, but I honestly think your translation is far from a good translation.

  • thanks for all the help, that was above and beyond the call of duty. I didn't think to capitalize the L because I assumed the capitalization occurred due to it beginning the sentence (website names are rarely capitalized). My translation, though admittedly quite flawed, was an attempt an natural english-it would be unnatural to "do" a website in english.
    – yadokari
    Jun 19, 2012 at 5:54
  • I was confused by how many times the writer used 点. From the perspective of a Japanese speaker, is the writer's usage of 点 redundant?
    – yadokari
    Jun 19, 2012 at 5:55
  • I edited the translation with the help of your instructions; if you see further flaws please point them out.
    – yadokari
    Jun 19, 2012 at 5:58
  • Judging from your use of the semicolon and other parts of the sentence, I still think you don't get it. You may be taking that the second point is a reasoning or an elaboration on the first point, and that may (or may not) be the logical reasoning behind what is in the original writer's mind, but the writer is not writing as such. There are two points listed. The use of has no problem in Japanese. In English, it can be better translated as "the fact that"
    – user458
    Jun 19, 2012 at 6:07
  • Should I understand the first 点 as point or points, or does it not necessitate a distinction?
    – yadokari
    Jun 19, 2012 at 6:24

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