From La Quadrature du Net
Jump to navigationJump to search
Si vous cherchez le glossaire des termes souvent utilisés par La Quadrature, c'est PAR ICI !
Welcome to La Quadrature's translation guide and glossary.
It intends to be a useful resource to help you translate La Quadrature texts and answer most immediate questions you might have while you translate.
You'll find here general translation rules, a few stylistic recommendations and a glossary of tricky terms that we often use.

General translation guide[edit]

In red, the button to pick a name
Picking a name

We use a realtime text editor called Etherpad (often referred to as just pads) to make it possible for multiple people to work on translating the same text at the same time.

When joining a translation effort, please pick a name (using the top-right button) so everyone can see who is doing what

Translators will always disagree on the best way to translate something. This is not a problem in itself. What matters is to be able to have a constructive discussion about these disagreement. Two things are very valuable in trying to do so:

  • the chat system built straight in the pads (see pictures to the right)
  • leaving notes in the text itself, for other translators to see.
    The button to open the chat, located at the bottom right of the pad
    The chat open, in small mode. Highlighted in yellow, the button to make the chat bigger and "dock" it on the right of the pad
    • don't hesitate to leave things like [FIXME], [NOT SURE], etc. in the text. [MEH] is a personal favourite of mine to indicate I'm unconvinced by a translation I've just produced. ~axx
    • don't feel obligated to translate everything and anything. Better to leave a gap (and mark the missing proposition/word with a [MISSING]) than to make a bad translation that others will then have to find, think about and fix.

It might seem obvious, but it is worth mentioning: read the rest of the text, not just the bit you are translating. See how others have translated terms and the choices they've made.

  • Try to maintain consistency throughout the text.

Style Guide[edit]

  • Shorter is better. This is general rule, not a hard one. But keeping our texts short is highly desirable, as many people won't have the time or the courage to read long texts.
    • French sentences tends to be longer than their English equivalent: because of the “coefficient de foisonnement”, French is 20% longer than English, on average.
    • If you are a person of French-background translating to English, remember to make shorter sentences than you normally would. English doesn't like very long sentences with many clauses as much as French does.
  • Neutral style. A lofty (and hard) goal, as neutrality is often a loaded word. But our readers will not all have the same cultural context and references, so we should aim to use words that aren't (too) specific to one country (US, UK, Australia) and keep the words simple.
    • "Simple" is a hard thing to do, given the source material and the complexity of La Quadrature texts and terms.
    • When in doubt, pick the simpler way of saying things in English.
  • Pay extra attention to translating the title: discuss with others, don't hesitate to make multiple suggestions. It's the first things readers will see, it will be in the URL and widely circulated, it needs to be good and deserves effort.
    • The first paragraph too, to a slightly lesser extent.
  • Opening press release location and dates are in the following format:
    • Paris, 1 April 1984
    • Paris, le 1er avril 1984
  • Typography and punctuation: English doesn't use (non-break) spaces before the following symbols, whereas French does:
    •  ! ? ; :

French to English specific (FR→EN)[edit]

  • We settle on British English, not American English.
    • This entails "defence" rather than "defense", "authorise" rather "authorize", "favour" rather than "favor", etc.
    • Dates are in the format Day Month Year (US English would use MDY), example: 1 April 1984
      • I'd be in favour of using YEAR-MM-DD for dates entirely in numbers ~axx
    • Avoid contractions in written text: “they are” rather “they're”, "it is" rather than "it's". “Doesn't” is usually fine.
  • Not all France-specific material is translated. The stuff that is translated to English is considered useful to an international audience. It is worth keeping this in mind when translating, so as to contextualise the meaning: translating is adapting.
  • Therefore, one should avoid simply translating “Assemblée Nationale” to “National Assembly”, which has no specific meaning in English.
    • It is better to opt for something such as “Assemblée Nationale (lower house of French Parliament)” or ”the lower house of French Parliament (Assemblée Nationale)”.
    • The italics are good practice, they help clearly mark the fact it is a foreign term.

English to French specific (EN→FR)[edit]

  • Accents (and diacritics in general) are not optional on French upper case letters.
    • Ç, É, À, È, Ê are here to copy paste, should you need them.
  • In French, months and days of the week are not capitalised:
    • "aura lieu dimanche 1er avril 1984" (not Avril, not Dimanche).
  • English is a more gender-neutral language than French. When translating into French, please try to use terms and expression that don't skew the language towards the masculine too much (écriture inclusive).


If you can't find a word here, a useful trick is to find the untranslated term on Wikipedia (say, in French) then look at how the corresponding article in the other language (say, English) is titled, or calls the term.

ie: Conseil d'État ? -->'%C3%89tat_(France) --> --> “In France, the Council of State (French: Conseil d'État…)” --> English: Council of State.

Using Linguee and looking for translations from proper multilingual institutions (European Parliament, European Commission, Québec institutions) is another solution.

WordReference remains a good source for some terms too.

Glossary of common terms[edit]

Please double and triple check before adding something <3

Français English Commentaires/Comments
Abroger, annuler (une loi) To repeal, to abrogate (less common though, prefer repeal) L'abrogation : the repeal
Accuser (juridique) to charge (someone with murder)
Amicus curiae Amicus brief Or the filer of an amicus brief (who is literally the friend of the court)
Apologie Apology Attention : "apology for" = excuse; "apology of" = apologie (donc on dira "apology of terrorism")
Assemblée Nationale French National Assembly From time to time, put in footnote (<fn>) French lower legislative house
Assignation à résidence House arrest
Attaquer (en justice) to take to court, to challenge to challenge is more about challenging the legality of the law, usually
Atteinte (au droit de ...) Violation, infringement, encroachment
Autorités nationales de protection des données Data Protection Authorities (DPAs)
Avis Opinion Avis défavorable = Adverse opinion; avis favorable = unqualified opinion; avis réservé = qualified opinion
Ayant-droits Rights-holder, assignee
Bande-passante bandwidth
Besoin d'en connaître Need-to-know D'où des expressions du genre « connaître des motifs de la demande », qui n'a pas le même sens que « connaître les motifs de la demande ».

administrative blockage of websites

Censurer To reject (legal), or censure (more rarely, censor) Attention, lorsque les juristes disent par exemple que le conseil constitutionnel a censuré une mesure législative, cela ne se traduira pas par censure ou censor, mais "reject" !
Ciblage publicitaire Targeted advertising
Champ d'application (material) scope
Chiffrement de bout en bout end-to-end encryption
Code de la sécurité intérieure Internal Security Code
Commission committee Une commission au sens de groupe de travail, y compris de groupe de travail du Parlement européen (JURI, ITRE, etc.), qui dans ce cas est donc Committee of the European Parliament.
Commission européenne European Commission bien noter la différence avec le terme de « commission » seul
Commission consultative du secret de la défense nationale Consultative commission for national defence secrets
Commission Mixte Paritaire Joint parliamentary committee — a joint parliamentary committee responsible for reaching a compromise between the lower and upper house — In the USA this would be called a resolution committee. Translating by Commission Mixte Paritaire is ok with a footnote to explain
Commission nationale de contrôle des techniques de renseignement National Oversight Commission for Intelligence-Gathering Techniques /!\"monitoring" = "contrôle" au sens de surveillance/observation, pas au sens de contrôle administratif. Poétique, mais contre-sens). Sinon, la BBC dit aussi "National Commission for Control of Intelligence Techniques" (cf [1]. Oversight préférable dans la mesure où c'est le terme qui désigne le mieux la fonction de la CNCTR)
Concurrence Competition
Condamner to sentence
Consacrer (un droit) To enshrine
Conseil d'Etat French Council of State (or Conseil d'État)
Conseil constitutionnel (French) Constitutional Council
Conseil européen European Council The European Council is the Institution of the European Union (EU) that comprises the heads of state or government of the member states, along with the council's own president and the president of the Commission. (wikipedia)
Conseil de l'Union européenne Council of the European Union
Conseil de l'Europe Council of Europe The Council of Europe is a regional intergovernmental organisation which promotes human rights, democracy and the rule of law in its 47 member states (Wikipedia)
Considérant (en début d'un texte juridique) recital
Contrôleur européen de la protection des données European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS)
Cour européenne des droits de l'Homme European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR)
Cour de justice de l'Union européenne European Court of Justice (ECJ)
Décret decree décret d'application d'une loi : implementing decree
Délégation de signature Delegation of Signature Authority
Demande d'intervention to ask for leave to intervene
Déposer un amendement to table an amendment [ In US legislative language, to "table" a proposed law (or amendment) means to cease considering it, not to submit it to consideration ]
Déposer une plainte To lodge/file a complaint To lodge a complaint before the ECtHR, for instance
Déposer (ex : des écritures) devant une cour Submit or File (ex: documents) with a court/jurisdiction/tribunal/you name it
Député MP (Member of Parliament) et pas “deputy”
Déréférencement Delinking
Dérive ?? terme qui revient souvent, essayer de paraphraser et éviter “drift”
DGSE French foreign intelligence services acronym for the General Directorate for External Security
Disposition Provision
Données de connexion Traffic data or Metadata PAS CONNECTION DATA !
droit commun Domestic Law
droit à l'image image (reproduction) rights, right of publicity Tricky, depends on the context
droit d'auteur copyright Attention : on traduit le plus souvent droit d'auteur par copyright, mais de manière stricte, les deux concepts sont différents. Parfois : authors' rights, authorial rights
droits voisins Ancillary rights OR related rights A small distinction here: "ancillary" rights are ones which support the principal one, whereas "related" rights are ones with a thematic relationship
éhonté shameless Sans honte, éhonté = shameless. Honteux = shameful
Encadrer (ex : le développement d'une pratique) To regulate (ex: the activities of...)
Entrée en vigueur Coming into force The law came into force
Eurodéputé·e MEP (Member of the European Parliament) Use the full version the first time, then just “MEP” in the rest of the text
Ès qualités In [their] official capacity
État de droit Rule of Law
Exégètes amateurs Exégètes "Exegesis" existe en anglais et pour cela nous permet de conserver le nom propre (perhaps better "amateur pundits" (somewhat demeaning)?) ["nonprofessional commentators"?]
Hébergeur Hosting (service) provider
Ingérence Encroachment (on freedom of ...)
Intégrité du territoire Territorial integrity c'est une expression, ne pas chercher à traduire par "integrity of the territory" ou assimilé
Judiciaire Judicial
Libertés In the context of LQdN, usually "civil liberties", not "freedoms" or "civil rights"
Liberté de panorama Freedom of panorama (FOP) Exception au droit d'auteur par laquelle il est permis de reproduire une œuvre protégée se trouvant dans l'espace public [Maybe "freedom of unfettered view"?]
Contentieux Litigation
Loi Numérique French Digital Law *or Bill until it has been adopted!*
Loi de Programmation Militaire The Military Programming Act, the law providing for France's defence and military legal framework for 2014-2018
Loi Renseignement Surveillance Law or Intelligence Law
Mémoire (juridique) (Legal) brief On dit "to submit a brief"
Mémoire en défense Statement of defen**c**e
Mémoire en réplique (Legal) brief (replying to the grounds and arguments [set forth])
Ministre de l'intérieur Interior Minister
Obligé obligated /!\ "obliged" signifie "obligé" au sens the "redevable" ("mille mercis, je suis votre obligé"); "obligated" signifie "obligé" au sens d'"astreint à une obligation" (that is, "required to"; et "dutied" veut dire "soumis à une taxe d'importation", alors n'essayez même pas).
Ordonnance de blocage (par un juge) (the judge's) blocking order, (US) injunction against
Parlementaire Parliamentarian Ou plus simplement, MP
Pédopornographie /!\ **Child pornography** PAS pedopornography ! Pas “child porn”. Child abuse material ou depictions of child abuse permet de rappeler que ce sont avant tout des représentations de maltraitance.
Perquisition House search
Personnes concernées (donnees personelles) Data subject, persons concerned
Piratage DO NOT USE Piracy. Prefer illegal sharing of copyrighted material or modify the sentence Piratage est à éviter car il laisse entendre une pratique illégale alors qu'il s'agit juste de partage d'œuvres dont on a interdit le partage [Massachusetts law recognizes a minor offense called "unauthorized use"]
Premier ministre Prime minister Or PM
Procédure judiciaire Legal proceeding(s) Judiciaire = civil ou pénal, pas administratif
procédure législative ordinaire the ordinary legislative procedure
Projet de loi Bill
Proposer (un amendement) To propose (an amendment) To "table" a bill or amendment can mean to postpone consideration [or often, realistically, to eliminate it entirely]
Qualité à agir (avoir ...) To have standing
Question prioritaire de consitutionalité Priority Preliminary rulings on the issue of constitutionality (QPC) We need to translate the wikipedia article. This translation is according to the English version of the website of the French Constitutional Council. Alternatively we can put in footnote: The QPC is a French Constitutional Law procedure allowing persons involved in a pending case to ask the Constitutional council to pass judgment on the constitutionality of the laws relating to the case at hand.
Raison d'État reason of state
Recours Possibility to bring a case/an action *before* a court, right to judicial redress Before, not in front
Recours au fond Judgement as a matter of law
Recours en annulation Appeal for annulment
Référé en suspension Suspensive judgment (US) "temporary injunction"?
Renvoi préjudiciel Preliminary rulings
Responsable de traitement (données personnelles) Controller
Retiré, retirer (le projet de loi a été ...) The bill was withdrawn
Saisir une cour/tribunal/juridiction to lodge a complaint with ..., ou to bring a case before ..., ou refer to the court
Secret de la Défense nationale Security clearance; classified "Être habilité au secret de la Défense nationale" = have/hold a security clearance, be security-cleared (NB: ne pas chercher à traduire "défense nationale" dans le cadre de cette expression). "Couvert par le secret de la Défense nationale" = classified (as a national defence secret)
Sénat French Senate Same remark as for French National Assembly
Sous-traitant Processor Dans le cadre du champ d'application territorial du réglement sur les données personnelles (GDPR)
Sous peine de nullité [...], failing which it would be void
Traitement Processing Et non "process"
Traitement automatisé Automatic processing
Tribune Op-ed
Trilogue Trialogue Procédure de négociation européenne à trois parties (ie : dialogue à trois)
Utilisateur(s) final(s) end-user(s); US "end users" Dans le contexte de la neutralité du Net. Attention à bien mettre finals au pluriel, c'est un terme juridique.
Versé au contadictoire Made available to the parties to the dispute
Vie privée Privacy Or private sphere? [Yes]
Voie de recours judiciaire a judicial remedy
Voter (accepté) To adopt, to approve
Voter (rejeté) To reject, to vote down
Zero-rating Zero-rating Need to translate the wikipedia article
Réflexion citoyenne Engaged citizenship
Sécuritaire ??? DO NOT use securitarian as isn't a real word. Try to bypass it or rephrase.
Société de gestion collective (de droits) Collecting society / Copyright collective Contexte de société de gestion collective de droits d'auteurs (SPRD)