In Terrace House, several people are sitting around a table sharing information about themselves and answering questions.

One of the guys asks a snow boarder the following question:

プロってことはどっかスポンサーがついてるってことですよね?

From my understanding, ってことはどっか means "saying (こと) somewhere". The whole sentence in my head translated to English would be something roughly like "Didn't you say something about you being a professional sponsored somewhere?"

According to Netflix's translation on their English CC's, it actually translates to "If you're a pro, that means you have a sponsor?"

According to Google translate, ってことはどっか by itself translates to "Does it mean something?"

I know that English translations aren't to be taken literally, but both sources suggest that ってことはどっか translates to "meaning something" rather than "saying (こと) somewhere".

Why is this the case?

up vote 2 down vote accepted

You may have broken this sentence up incorrectly, and that's likely what's confusing you.

It should be this:

プロってことは|どっかスポンサーがついてるってことですよね?

Thus, you get something like this -

Since you're a pro, you must have a sponsor somewhere, right?

どっか is a colloquial shortening of どこか, which might also be part of your confusion.

In the right context, it could also mean that this person must have brought a sponsor to the event they're at, but based on your question, that doesn't seem quite right.

  • 3
    IMO "you must have someone as a sponsor" would be more correct (here, どこ refers to organizations rather than a place) – Enno Shioji Dec 3 at 8:05

ってこと is just the shortened form of ということ. Depending on the context its meaning can change, but in the target sentence it comes out twice. You can think of this double ということ form「XXX ということは YYYということだ」as a set phrase that means something like "If (condition XXX), then (conclusion YYY)". Then everything else will be easier to understand.

Going back to the original sentence,

プロってことはどっかスポンサーがついてるってことですよね

The "condition" here is being a プロ, in this case, the speaker knew that the other person was a professional snowboarder. The speaker is concluding that since the other person was a professional snowboarder, then he must have someone as a sponsor (どこか shortened to どっか).

So, we can then translate the sentence as follows:

If you are a pro, then you must have someone as a sponsor, right?

This「XXX ということは YYYということだ」form that I introduced above may vary countless ways, but it is always an IF and THEN form. Other variations:

  1. XXX ということは YYYということだろう、which means something like "If (condition XXX), wouldn't it be (conclusion YYY)"
  2. XXX ということは YYYということを意味する、which means something like "If (condition XXX), then it means (conclusion YYY)"
  3. XXX ということは YYYということが言える、which means something like "If (condition XXX), the we can say that (conclusion YYY)"
  4. XXX することは YYYということだ、which means something like "If (condition is verb XXX), then it means (conclusion YYY)"

and so on. Below are sample sentences from an actual news articles of the other variations. 1, 2.

あたごにDWESが既に搭載されているということは、MIPSそのものが、すでに搭載されているという事だろう

医学が進歩することは、実際の医者が変わるというレベルではこれほど大変だということですね。

  • 1
    he must have a sponsor somewhere -- Do you mean, どこかスポンサーがついてる has the same meaning as どこかスポンサーがついてる ? – Chocolate Dec 3 at 3:54
  • Hi Chocolate. Sorry I don't understand the intention of your question as there is no に in the original sentence. Are you saying that に is omitted? – DXV Dec 3 at 4:17
  • To the person who downvoted: May I ask why? I think the time and effort I exerted to provide this answer deserve at least an explanation. – DXV yesterday
  • 1
    (I'm not the downvoter but..) I didn't mean to say に is omitted.. I meant to say the どこか means "some company", rather than "somewhere (=どこかに)". I think its usage is like だれか知り合いが… 何か用事が… どこか大きな会社…. Sorry I can't explain well.. I'm basically saying the same thing as Enno Shioji. – Chocolate yesterday
  • I think I get your question now: someone as sponsor vs sponsor somewhere. My answer to that is "No, in a strict sense but "yes" essentially" 厳密には違うが、この例では本質的には同じ意味です。To satisfy the Grammar Nazis out here, I revised my answer. – DXV yesterday

どっか is (also) a shortened form of どうか which translates to "somehow or other"

Being a pro means that somehow or other you have to be sponsored, right?

  • 2
    As far as I can recall, どっか and どうか are not interchangeable regardless of the context. – naruto Dec 5 at 7:49

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