Log in, Masuk or Masuk Log?

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 »  Articles Overview  »  Art of Translation and Interpreting  »  Interpreting  »  Log in, Masuk or Masuk Log?

Log in, Masuk or Masuk Log?

By Portalkata | Published  01/5/2015 | Interpreting | Not yet recommended
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Quicklink: http://arm.proz.com/doc/4088
անգլերենից ինդոնեզերեն translator
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(a contextual-based localization form)

In these past fifteen years, Bahasa Indonesia experiences language evolution just like other languages outside English. The rich amount of new ICT words and terms are borrowed. Furthermore, IT gadget and social media dictate our natural language style. Be realized or not, these two phenomena have improved the vocabulary and at the same time changing the language style of a society.

While surfing a place whether the purpose is for serious matter such us to conduct a research or just having fun, there is an occasion when we arrive at a certain secure site where we need to click “login” button. The access to that entrance is determined by our legitimate identity which has been recorded by the system of that place. When we already have the authorized access, we will be brought to a landing page. There, we found various interesting and guided menus.

Not all the sites have an access protection. Those site pages can be entered by public, for instances the free blogs or informational open-source websites. However, the paid news portal, e-government portal, banking portal, e-commerce, electronic libraries, job advertisement websites, e-mail providers, etc. must have an access security mechanism. Log in or Log out or Sign in or Sign Out, are the strandard terms which are used in that mechanism.

The Semantic Aspect of Log in
In Oxford dictionary, there is records: 1. Log is defined as to put information in an official record or write a record of events 2. Log in/on is defined as to perform the actions that allow you to begin using a computer system and to allow someone to begin using a computer system. Meanwhile, in Great Dictionary of Indonesia Language 4th Edition, the definitions of log related to the IT are 1. To register (v); 2. A list (n); -- exit, ending the session of using computer or internet by following several instructions – enter, gaining access to a computer system by entering username and password or certain commands.

In relation to the mentioned dictionary definitions, we can obtain general understanding. However, we do not acquire how the semantics of log in or log out is built. In it’s source language, English, four years ago, the “log in” and its derivatives such as “login”, “logging in”, and “logging into”, were still debatable. But I think the linguistic situation has been agreed globally in last two years. There were two opinions. One opinion says that “log in” always refers to an entrance, and the other opinion says “not always”. A more literal and technical approach also seeing that “log in” will involve a physical log of system. “Log” in IT environment has its own definition where every session or system activity is recorded in a log. A log helps the system owner in diagnosing and solving the problems in the system whether in development or production phases. The information recorded in a log is very important since it records the trance of activities.
In a simple language, “log in” more than just giving a checklist so that the website will memorize the user access into the system. “Log in” is more than just ordinary entry process but entering a system by filling in a unique, confidential identity information to maintain the security of both parties (system and users). “Log in” process is not just about the system language which is so techy but it is also about the user experience, user who knows or knows nothing the depth of technical aspect. The information in a log will be helpful when the user forgot the password or being hacked by crackers. When user helped by the operator trace the login tracks, the system log will show the recorded information about exact time and location of those crackers.

Out of those procedures, most of users are getting used to a kind of multi-layered security system access. Not only entering name and password in a homepage, sometimes, we are also asked to fill additional information in a system, subsystem, or related system. For instance, when we access the websites related to the monetary or commerce transaction.

Thus the brief description of log in term. Sure, there are many foreign terms which are difficult to be localized into just one-word term. Therefore, many foreign terms, on the end, are translated two-words first and then simplified to one-word term such as in English to Indonesia, Hash > Tanda Pagar > Tagar. Many words, mostly in technical use need to localized into two-words than one-word to have a closer meaning to the source. For example, “customize” in many cases is not enough to simply localize as “atur” or “sesuaikan”. In real cases especially in how-to texts, “customize” need to localize in concrete way as “ubah suai”. As a phrasal verb, it is also good to write that two-words without space, “ubahsuai”, to show that it is a united verbal.

“Log in” as a phrasal verb, is actually simply localized into its equivalence, “masuk log” or “masuk-log”. It should be understood as a single phrase that consists of two verbs, to enter the system by logging in a unique username and a password. Although it is debatable, here, “Log” within “Masuk Log” is not to show a literal physical log of a system. “Log” as recorded in both Oxford Dictionary and Great Dictionary of Indonesia Language, is to write a record. In a simple language, whether to enter or out of the system you will always run the procedure of “masuk dengan mencatatkan” and “keluar dengan mencatatkan” your identity. Hence, by forcing the translation of “log in” into “masuk” instead of “masuk log” deliberately for the purpose of simplification or just misinterpretation reason, causes the meaning loss of the source message. It also happens in other IT terms.

It is clear that the idea of coining terms login (noun, adjective), log in (phrasal verb), logout (noun, adjective), log out (phrasal verb) is standarized by the international standard for communication and information technology. However, as the highly-civilized society, we cannot speak without forethought in generalizing various foreign terms into the same local terms. The choices of translation expertises or language users are only two: borrowing the terms just the way they are since the pronounciation of “log in” or “log out“ is almost the same as the writing; or localizing the terms in a suitable translations such as “masuk log” or “keluar log” as the form of consistency from the source language and to maintain the source message of the terms.***

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