When Coca-Cola Came to China…

You may have heard the story that when Coca-Cola first came to China and translated their name into Chinese, they used something that translated as “Bite The Wax Tadpole”. I thought that could mean that they use “壳口蝌曜“, but they originally picked the even more funny “蝌蝌啃蜡” which does literally translate as Bite the Tadpole.

Here’s the Chinese Reference: http://www.89mc.com/resource/cases/20070411/News200704112646.shtml

And in case you’ve ever heard the story about how the Chevy Nova was originally received in the Spanish market as the Chevy “No Go”, you should review the Urban Legends page that proves quite the opposite. So there you go, Coca-Cola can replace GM as the typical example of what can go wrong in i18n and l10n.

http://www.snopes.com/business/misxlate/nova.asp

5 thoughts on “When Coca-Cola Came to China…”

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