I've been using the chrome google translate extension for a few weeks now to translate foreign language posts in my feed. It has done an amazing job virtually every post seems to translate and the translation seems well enough to communicate and get the original intent.

How is this not a built-in mastodon feature!

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@xyfdi Doesnt need to be google translate. Also I'd be more than happy to pay for that service.

@freemo Yeah, the option to have it translated for a small fee seems reasonable.

Now I am starting to think how this can be implemented in Mastodon... πŸ˜• ( I should be studying! ;-) )

@xyfdi Wouldnt be too hard to implement. In fact can probably be done entierly on the front end.

@freemo I am a scrub when it comes to anything related to the front end, but I believe you (and from what I know it sounds plausible too!)


No idea what they use, but I'd like to see the functionality on the web interface which is the only client I use.

@selea @freemo Would that mean sharing non-public posts a node sees with a third-party? ATM, there're few open source solutions (Apertium, Moses) and none easy to integrate.

@lightone @selea Yes but keep in mind that is already possible since any end user viewer your feed might be running all sorts of stuff that passing information to a third party from the web sites they see. I mean anyone with the google translate plugin is already doing that but so is anyone who has ever translated posts in general or did a reverse image search or countless other things.

@freemo Yes. "P" is for "privacy" in FEDIVERSE ;) However, careless behaviour is one thing. A built-in feature encouraging to send en masse to a third-party is sort of against the spirit of Fedi. The main non-public posts to care about would be DMs

@lightone Agreed. Obviously the ideal way to implement this is to allow the end user to select whether they wish to translate non-public posts or not, that way if a user has the ability to respect other's wishes. I'd also personally add some way for a user to indicate ont heir profile a marker so they can opt-out ideally.

@freemo For data-greedy me the ideal way would be to translate stuff on admin's own server(s), using some open source self-hosted software. But that's another burden for administrators. πŸ˜•

@lightone It would be ideal if it worked well. Sadly the best translation services are not open source.

@freemo Ohhh...You think Google translating our posts in Mastodon is a good idea -
sometimes I don't know what you're thinking...
(it's rhetorical - seems you've already chosen / don't se the danger / go for the candy).

I guess I don't where the line is for you and how bringing google into Mastodon is going to help long-term or where it might stop using Google.
Seem NOT what Mastodon is about either though this is more debatable and first point stands
(shake of the head my dear, shake of the head).
No need reply.

@freeschool This isnt something that exists on the server level. I use it as a personal browser plugin.

Unfortunately all it takes is a single person anywhere out of the millions on mastodon to use google translate in order for your posts to get translated. So no, I dont see a problem when even if I did not do it myself someone somewhere is using it already on the federated feed.

@freemo yes I thought it was a Mastodon embedded extension thing ...when it wasn't. My mistake.

And not sure about the 2nd paragraph.
I would use deepl,com or something to get it done or not translate it (basically my thoughts are usually that encouraging Google isn't good or supporting / making the alternatives) so that's what the "go for the candy part" meant. To go for Google is perpetually bad basically lol

So despite perceived benefits doesn't improve future if translation is what you want... that's my general line I guess

@freeschool The truth is as a moderator I need to translate **all** posts on qoto so I can catch concerning content. As of yet I know of no automatic way to do that other than google.

That said I assure you I'd never lock the QOTO users into google in any way. I know a lot of QOTO users hate them and I go out of my way to honor that choice for them.

@πŸŽ“ Dr. Freemo :jpf: πŸ‡³πŸ‡± Deepl, also closed source, is doing a better job but with less languages.


Have already looked into some open source options for auto translation. It’s only a question of time until it’s a feature for the fediverse.


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