As Caroline McCarthy has posted, Facebook is in the process of translating their site into multiple languages. The first site screenshot of Facebook in Spanish is displayed below. Don’t expect to see the new versions right away though. As Caroline points out, Facebook is holding off on switching on the new versions until they have gone through the voting process. This will prevent the site from having spammers or other virtual misfits from playing games with the Facebook translation process.
As has been reported elsewhere, Facebook is using a crowdsourcing model for site translation opting to let the users translate it rather than paying translators. Is there really that much to translate on Facebook? Apparently. Perhaps Facebook is just lazy though. They do let people program on their own platform rather than program all the applications themself. Facebook could have taken the time to build a sheep throwing application but they have avoided the childs play for the time being.
The first translations will be available by the end of the first quarter hopefully and then Facebook is well on its way to world domination! Leveraging the crowdsourced translation model is extremely smart though because if all goes well with the first few languages, Facebook will be able to immediately translate into all the other languages in an extremely short amount of time.
While I won’t be spending much time on the German version of Facebook (or any other language for the most part), Facebook is hoping that millions of users worldwide continue to flock to their site once it has been transalted. Facebook may be able to take on a number of other social networks in a relatively short amount of time if all goes well.