Monday, April 07, 2008

How literally should one interpret "literally"?

I was reading a description of the desired applicant at a copywriting company yesterday when I ran across the following

  • You do not translate Kompetenz, Kontrolle and Konditionen literally

Now what I want to know is, "What in heaven's name do they mean?" If you do the following,

  • Kompetenz = competence
  • Kontrolle = control
  • Konditionen = conditions

it's not literal, it's wrong! The literal translations, off the top of my head, would be expertise, checking/inspection, and terms. Do they mean they don't want these, or do they simply want people who don't fall into the most common Falsche Freunde traps?

I also ran across the words "Plus Points" on their web page. I am more familiar with this phrase in German. Do the Brits say this? In NY English, I think we would say something "is a plus".

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