Just annoying

Just came across the WK entry for this kanji: 値。The meaning is given as ‘value’ and no synonyms are offered. Then the example sentence is this:

その価には同意できないな。タダ同然じゃないか。
I can’t agree with this price. It’s just not right.

i.e. the example sentence translates the word as PRICE, not VALUE. VALUE and PRICE mean different things!!

…am I missing something here or is this just sloppy and unhelpful?

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It doesn’t even seem to use the same kanji… is there a typo?

I’m not seeing that as a sentence for 値. I do see it for 価.

Either way. Add a user synonym if you like. The English translations are often a bit loose, and won’t strictly use the particular gloss chosen for reviews. This is a sentence in the 20+ level range, which means they haven’t added more sentences to it yet.

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I see price listed as an alternative meaning:

Jisho lists the same

Since they are different meaning (just as you mentioned) then they would not be listed as a synonym (synonym = same meaning)

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The example sentence for 値 is:

羽毛布団はやっぱり値が張るね。
A down quilt is expensive, as I expected.

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Are you suggesting there’s a difference between “alternative meaning” and “synonym” here on WK?

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Very fair point. However the original point stands, why say that it means ‘value’ then give an example where it means ‘price’?

Because they forgot to add it? They have a blog where they post the small edits they make to the entries every week. There are usually about 20 or so, though mostly they are things like punctuation and typos.

But if you email them they’ll add it to 価 so that it matches 値, and that will be that.

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My bad, I cut and paste the kanji but somehow got the wrong one. My point was related to 価, not 値.

But looking at jisho.org it seems they can both be read ‘あたい’ and can both mean price, cost or value.

I’m finding it hard to imagine this scenario:

“OK chaps, the kanji means VALUE .Think of a sentence that uses the word VALUE”
“I’ve got one! THIS PRICE IS TOO HIGH”

OK, so it’s a mistake. An exceptionally easy to avoid mistake.

:thinking:…From what I can remember, the ‘alternative meaning’ for most kanji I’ve seen is actually an alternative meaning. The vocab usually look more like synonyms listed as alternative meaning but I’m just making broad strokes here. To be fair, the semantics get subtle and rules get broken…language is tough.

We don’t know how the mistake was made. Perhaps both meanings existed on the draft for the page and whoever published it erased price by accident. I don’t think we have to dream up scenarios where the team can’t read the words they’re looking at.

Just to clarify, this is about vocab items. Usually when a vocab item has an entirely separate meaning that isn’t related at all, with another reading, like 額 (frame) and 額 (forehead), one is just completely ignored, because they are only teaching one word, and have no way to handle multiple meanings and multiple readings for one way of writing a vocab item.

Here, 値 and 価 do both mean price and value, and there’s no reading difference across the meanings. So it should be fine.

Getting into how to use them accurately in Japanese sentences is another issue, and one that WK doesn’t cover.

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Indeed, language is tough. But what is it about Japanese and the teachers of Japanese?

I’ve learned French, German and Spanish all to a pretty high level and Japanese is the only one where I have to cross-reference each translation I see across 3+ websites to a) make sure it’s correct and b) make sure it is actually used in somewhat daily/regular conversation and not just a word used in government documentation, newspapers or obscure literature.

Most of the time the mistakes seem to just be laziness. KANJIDAMMAGE for example does at least seem to make some effort to say, “OK, in this context to word means ‘x’ but it can also mean ‘y’. And mostly it is used in the following way… etc”.

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French, German, Spanish, and English are derived from and have been interacting with each other for centuries. Japanese is from a different language family altogether. They have their own concepts that may or may not overlap with English/French/German/Spanish words.

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Very true. Hence it’s very annoying when websites, especially ones you’ve paid $hundreds to use, give one simple translation for a word rather than trying to explain how the word can mean different things in different circumstances.

I’m just angry because this is episode 9,312 where I’ve seen something like this in the 20+ yrs I’ve been studying Japanese. I even had a long email correspondence with 3A Network about the translations in their books. They essentially said, “Yeah, we know the translations are full of mistakes and are not reliable, but we’re working on improving them”.

Translating Japanese to English (or any other western languages) is truly an art to itself. I’m constantly in awe of the creativity of people whose job it is to write subtitles for Japanese movies/TV shows.

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Hi there. I totally get your feelings about incorrect translations, but at the same time please note that translation may be done different ways. I am just an amateur translator so perhaps there will be someone to correct me, but I will just share my thoughts.
Umm, so. The thing that I get with Japanese in particular is that many words do not map accurately vs a word in another language. Sometimes I get the best equivalent in English and sometimes in Russian and sometimes nowhere as it is a bit of this and that with a mixture sth else.
There is also this problem with essence of things you see. Something only natural to a Japanese may be null for a person from other nation. Language only helps us to express our thoughts right? If I never thought of something there is no word for it in my vocab. The more abstract is the word, the more this issue manifests.
So, I just have fun with trying to define a new word with examples and jpn-jpn dictionaries. “Translations” to any other language may any time turn false.

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I would agree with you in general, but not with Wanikani. Wanikani is specifically intended to teach kanji, not vocabulary. The vocabulary items on the site are also not intended to actually teach the vocabulary, but instead to reinforce the kanji, so I think frustration here is a bit misplaced.

For other products, clarity is nice, especially the more advanced you go. Though I do still think it’s a more difficult task with english-japanese, due to less overlap in things you would normally expect to overlap very easily, like basic nouns, which often actually don’t very well.

Just to reiterate a point that has been made a millions times already in the community: WK is kanji learning platform with the vocabulary to supplement the kanji learning experience (not a primary vocabulary learning platform). If you so wish, you can add and supplement examples as you go if you want more example sentences to alternate meanings. https://ejje.weblio.jp/ usually gives examples for every meaning entry if you want a reliable source.

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Very good points. Thank you :blush: