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Dear colleagues, We'll all heard stories of clients who wanted to do away with the ugly sight of big, conspicuous interpreting booths in their meeting rooms. I once had to argue with a client who wanted to pull movable panels in the hotel meeting room he'd booked to make us "dispappear" behind this newly created wall... Of course we have a duty to explain that interpreters need to see what is happening to be able to use non-verbal information, but may be our clients wouldn't mind as much if the booths looked nicer. Do you know of any good example of this and do you have pictures to share? How can you make our booths blend in if you have a very big regime?

asked 29 May '12, 06:08

Fiona's gravatar image


edited 29 May '12, 06:19

Delete's gravatar image

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Tu n'as jamais suggéré de les mettre sur le Quai 9 ¾ ? ça pourrait marcher ;-)

(29 May '12, 06:42) Danielle

Nice one, Danielle! ;-) My question was very serious, though, since we are under more and more pressure to put booths in a different location altogether, thus forcing us to work remotely.

(29 May '12, 06:55) Fiona

+1 en guise de "vif d'or" ;-)

(29 May '12, 07:00) Angela

Nice one, Danielle! ;-) My question was very serious, though, as it seems this is a real issue for our clients.

(29 May '12, 11:04) Fiona

I think that we need to get acoustics specialists involved to develop "invisible" booths using the same sort of technology that is used in noise-excluding headphones. If these can be used to keep noise out then surely there is a way to keep noise in by reversing the process! If this were possible then one could sit interpreters at desks which were surrounded by an invisible "wall" which would not allow sound to escape: it would be the audio equivalent of a force field. Failing platform 9 and three quarters, of course!

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answered 17 Jul '12, 04:59

Martyn%20Swain's gravatar image

Martyn Swain

I suppose the only way around this are built-in booths which can be integrated pretty seamlessly into the room. Not very satisfying, eh?

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answered 29 May '12, 16:05

Alexander's gravatar image


...failing Danielle's suggestion :-), when the "look" of the room is important and clients are willing to pay, either the venue's or the equipment renter's staff are perfectly capable of erecting a fake, stage-like wall around the front of the booths (I remember a few occasions but unfortunately kept no pictures) thus making them look like fixed ones... and that surface can be "decorated" like any other.... presumably also using one way see-through material, making the front window panes of our booths "disappear", if we're really considered to be that unseemly.

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answered 29 May '12, 18:41

msr's gravatar image


edited 30 May '12, 17:45

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question asked: 29 May '12, 06:08

question was seen: 3,097 times

last updated: 17 Jul '12, 04:59 is a community-driven website open to anyone with questions and/or answers about interpreting, i.e. spoken language translation

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