Companies like Amazon and Facebook have launched programs to provide vets with skills and resourcesRead more...
Service offers potential to entrepreneurs and app developers
Tokyo-based myGengo raised a $750,000 seed round. The funding came from several well-known angel investors including, Dave McClure, Felix Miller co-founder of last.fm, Joshua Schachter the found of Delicious, Brian Nelson the CEO of a Japan-based affiliate marketing firm ValueCommerce, Christoph Janz, and Benjamin Joffe, the CEO of a China-based tech consultancy firm called Plus Eight Star as well as several Japanese investors.
MyGengo, crowdsourced translation site, operates in nine different languages and has three different price points of service, ranging from $.05 a word to $.15 a word. The site employs both professional translators and bilingual individuals who are vetted with a system of exams. This is significantly cheaper than its most similar competitor, Lingtastic, which offers live translations at $.17 a minuet for phone-based translations.
The site has some obvious uses for the entrepreneur. Running your site, or app, in multiple languages will attract a larger base of users and make the most of your potential customer base. As a matter of fact, myGengo has an API that allows other Web sites to do just that. The API also allow for some free machine translation, though you may not want to rely on those too heavily.
A service like this can also allow for a more inclusive customer service experience. If your service department can take email based Q&A's from people in their native language, you will not only engender good will, but be able to resolve issues faster with the increased clarity.
Just be aware of one little caveat, the Intellectual Property section of the term which states that you have to, "grant to us (and our sub-contractors) a license to store and use the Original Works and the Translated Works for the duration of the Contract." If anything that needs translation is bound by the terms of a confidentiality agreement with another group you may want to be sure this won't cause a conflict before you submit.
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Last.fm is a social networking company which revolves around its music recommendation engine. Recommendations are made by comparing user data to the rest of the Last.fm user community. This community gives more potential to grow into media other than music. This is most likely a reason why media giant, CBS, acquired Last.fm for $280 million in May of 2007.Last.fm grew from very modest funding compared to its competitors Pandora, ilike, MyStrands and others.