Legal Tools Translation/4.0/Amharic

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Translation Status

4.0: In progress - final review (Step 7)
CC0: Not started

Key dates


First draft was submitted: 12 January 2016
Public comment period: 17 December 2016 - 3 January 2017
Translation officially published:

Translation team


  • Seble Baraki, lead CC Ethiopia
  • Yohannes Tesfaye, translation reviewer (contractor)
  • Solomon Mekonnen, translation reviewer (contractor)

You can contact the translation team at info (at) cc (dot) org (dot) et.

Translation process


After a draft was submitted, a team of Amharic-speaking lawyers did the review. The translators sent a report, some notes, and a draft, to be reviewed by a team from CC Ethiopia. The team and the translators discussed and sent a report of their agreed-upon decisions.

Seble Baraki was in charge of the translation and the two contractors reviewd the draft on 9 October 2016 (read the verification report).

The translation team decided to carry out the public consultation in the following manner:

  • Half day workshop with identified and willing participants. On behalf of the team of Creative Commons (CC) in Ethiopia, the public was cordially invited to attend a Public Comment Workshop for the validation of CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 Amharic to be held in Addis Ababa on December 17, 2016 from 9:00am to 12:00am at the X-hub Innovation Center. The aim of this workshop was to solicit comments, suggestions and/or other kinds of feedback to better improve the licenses and at the end make them officially available to the public for use. Read the post on the CC Ethipia blog to find out how you can register or see CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 worksheet.
  • Sent out the Amharic version to individuals they think would be of help in giving relevant feedback on the document - this will include linguists, lawyer, artists and others who would be interested in the topic;
  • Posted the document on CC Ethiopia website and also shared it on Twitter and Facebook - this could reach people who have access to Wi-Fi within Ethiopia and also those in the Diaspora.

Key translation decisions and challenges


There were some spelling, punctuation and format errors, a few missing (skipped) words, and inaccurate terminologies, which have been addressed and corrected by the reviewers. The reviewers and legal lead of CC Ethiopia discussed and resolved the issues in the following manner. Grammatical issues raised in the team’s review were discussed and resolved as shown at the end of this document. Some of the issues were resolved and the decision made using preferential translation.


Amharic does not have uppercase and lowercase letters. This was a challenge as the CC translation guide expressly requires that words and phrases capitalized in the English version should also be capitalized in corresponding translations. Therefore, words capitalized in the English version are currently not capitalized in the Amharic (as that is not an option in Amharic). But these words can be distinguished using bold letters, underlining or larger fonts. The reviewers request feedback from CC headquarter in this regard.


Some abbreviations in the source file (such as "BY NC SA" and "URI") do not have any Amharic equivalents. To use an Amharic abbreviation for "BY NC SA", for instance, would be confusing. Therefore, the translator has opted to use the full words in Amharic (ie. Attribution - NonCommercial - ShareAlike). In the case of "URI", however, there is no Amharic equivalent for it (whether abbreviated or unabbreviated). Therefore, the translator has written "URI" using Amharic letters and used the English abbreviation in parenthesis for clarification.


Some of the issues that the reviewers have faced with regard to terminology have been outlined as follows:

it was agreed that keeping the original translation, “አ መ ን ጪ ው ን መጥቀስ” was rational as it is more suited to describe the notion of attribution than the one adopted by the reviewers.
this word was originally translated as "ስራ" in Amharic. But "ስራ" can also mean "work" in Amharic, which is an error that the translation expressly warns the translator to avoid, as it would exclude non-copyrightable materials such as database. Solomon had suggested that we use the term "ቁሳዊ የመረጃ ስብስብ" instead, which literally means "a collection of material information". But we have finally come up with the term "የሥራ ውጤት". This term literally means "products of work", but it is a better translation of "material" as it is broader than 'works' and would include database and other non-copyrightable materials.
"Fair use" and "fair dealing"
these terms do not have Amharic equivalents. The translator had translated both as just "አግባብ ያለው አጠቃቀም", which only addresses "fair use". But both terms are now translated as closely as possible and the English terms have been used in parenthesis to avoid confusion.
Downstream recipients
this term was originally translated as "የሥር ወይም ቀጣይ ተቀባዮች", which literally means "lower or next recipients", which was vague. Therefore, it has been corrected as "የተቀባይ ተቀባዮች", which literally means "recipients of recipients", but which clearly conveys the meaning "people who receive the license from persons other than the original licensor".
As is
the reviewers have agree that it would be incomplete to translate it literarily and its not a commonly used word in Amharic so its better to keep “መጠቀም” in the Amharic version. Using ‘As is’ only and translating it literally could be unclear to the public.
URI has an Amharic equivalent - የድህረ ገፅ አድራሻ. This was suggested by CC Ethiopia. The reviewers have accepted this because it’s the correct way to describe the phrase and can be easily used.
The reviewers have accepted the comment raised by CC Ethiopia team regarding the term ‘transformed’ and is now changed to “የስራው አይነት የተቀየረበት”. The newly used Amharic phrase will describe the term better than what was picked by the reviewers.
It is agreed by all to keep the transliteration of the English word “database” than translating it into Amharic. It should be noted that there is an Amharic phrase -የመረጃ ቆት- in use. However, we have preferred to use the Amharic transliteration of "database" taking in to consideration the current state of usage of the phrase in the Amharic language.
In comment 22, CC Ethiopia team suggested finding a better Amharic word for "implied". The reviewers chose “አመልካች” which is an indicator rather than We have agreed to use an Amharic phrase “በውስጥ አዋቂ” for indicator.
Fair use/Fair dealing
The reviewers and CC Ethiopia have agreed that keeping the original translation might not try to describe the differences that exist between "fair use" and "fair dealing". At the same time, the translation of fair dealing adopted by the reviewers is not suitable for describing the concept. Hence, we have come up with a better translation for Fair dealing, “ተገቢ አሰራር”. This will try to compromise the issues raised from both sides and will better express fair dealing in Amharic.
The reviewers accepted the suggestion under comment 29 and the English word “contact” was translated into “ማግኘት”.
No derivatives
A better phrase- ውርስ ስራ -to describes the element “No derivatives” was suggested by Yohannes Tesfasye during our discussion and we have accepted it. Now it will be easier to incorporate this element, in Amharic, in the heading of the licenses that incorporate this element. The original version was too long as was the one adopted by the reviewers. We are all comfortable with using the phrase “ውርስ ስራ” to describe Noderivatives.
  • Preferential translation has been used to change the phrase “ስልጣን ያላቸው ሰዎች” to “ፍቃድ ለመስጠት መብት ያላቸው ሰዎች” as the term “ስልጣን” is usually associated with political power in Ethiopia and would be clearer to uses as suggested by CC Ethiopia team. However, it should be noted that both versions are correct. However, it was agreed that the term “ሰዎች” should be maintained for clarification purposes. The CC Ethiopia team review suggested removing this term. The reviewers argued that taking out the word from the translation could render the Amharic version confusing and somehow meaningless. This is because a large part of the public is still unfamiliar with the whole concept of copyright.
  • The reviewers have accepted the rephrasing comment given under ‘Comment 7’ and they have revised the worksheet accordingly. This is done so with the intention to give the translation more sense and become easily understood by the public.
  • The phrase “የ ሥ ራ ው ጤ ት ” is kept as suggested by the reviewers. The comment raised by CC Ethiopia was rejected because it doesn’t go along with what is indicated in the CC translation guidelines. However, the reviewers have accepted the issue of consistency, raised by CC Ethiopia team, in using the phrase “የሥራ ውጤት” throughout the document.
  • The suggestion given by CC Ethiopia on Comment 19 was accepted by the reviewers and is corrected in the final version accordingly.
  • The typos and grammatical errors outlined in CC Ethiopia team’s review (Comment 3, comment 6, comment 9 (using a bracket instead of a hyphen since its much better used in Amharic than the latter), comment 12, Comment 16, Comment 17, Comment 18, Comment 28) have been resolved and adjusted by the reviewers. This is with the exception of comment 8, comment 24 and comment 25/26. In regard to comment 8, the reviewers have argued, and this accepted, to keep their version, a definite article that describes the English – “the public” – than the one suggested by CC Ethiopia team. The same is true for the suggestion given by the CC Ethiopia team under Comment 24,25&26. We have agreed to keep the reviewers versions in these instances.

Draft translation files


  1. BY
  2. BY-SA
  3. BY-NC
  4. BY-ND
  5. BY-NC-SA
  6. BY-NC-ND

FINAL translation files

4.0: To be published