Have you ever watched one of those TV shows where a person gets done an extreme makeover and at the end they don’t look at all like the person they used to be?
Localisation could resemble a day at the hairdresser. Sometimes you have the idea in your head, and the hairdresser manages to understand it, connect with your inner needs and turn it into a great look (and give you the diva look you always dreamt of). Unfortunately some other times it becomes a nightmare, the hairdresser didn’t understand that ‘just an inch please”, and you end up with a haircut that not even Edward Scissorhands can compete with.
Localise means to adapt the content i.e. film, TV, advertisements, videogames, etc. for a foreign market in order to make it more appealing and target audience-focused. A good localisation job gives the product the right look for the right occasion.
Unfortunately, localisation can also get an extreme makeover sometimes. You don’t believe me? Check the occidentalisation of the well-known Japanese cartoon Doraemon for the American TV.
As we can see in the following before/after examples, these are not slight changes. The main question is: were they really necessary? Does the American audience need to see dollars instead of yens in order to understand that what the character holds is money?
We welcome all opinions, so whether you think that this is clearly an extreme makeover or believe that the changes are completely justified, share your thoughts!