Delete translations (or change the author)

Asked by Richard Mansfield on 2012-03-21

In one-off imports of translations for the mahara-lang project, I mistakenly uploaded some .po files with only names (no email addresses), in the Last-Translator: header.

Because the email address was missing, I (as the uploader of the files) was given credit for the translations, rather than the real author.

I would like to give the real translators credit for these translations. I tried uploading new .po files with the correct email addresses under Last-Translator:, but this doesn't change the author, presumably because the strings haven't changed.

So ideally I'd like the authors changed as follows:

Project: mahara-lang
Language: pt
Translator username: effgarces

Project: mahara-lang
Language: mi
Translator username: x-ian

If that's hard to do, could you just remove all the mahara-lang translations for mi and pt, and then I'll upload new translation tarballs containing the correct email addresses.

Otherwise I don't know how to fix this. I've considered trying to upload new .po files with dummy changes to all ~3000 translated strings, and then uploading new copies of those files with all the strings changed back again, but I have no idea if that would work, and it seems like a pretty ugly way to get around it.

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Jeroen T. Vermeulen (jtv) said : #1

This is a bit of a pickle. Your assessment looks impeccable to me. We might be able to delete translations from the database, but this takes time — and every minute that goes by means that somebody may be entering new translations that we don't want deleted.

Emptying and re-uploading the translations wouldn't work either: Launchpad would just see that you had approved some translation strings (submitted under your name) that weren't currently active. We simply didn't design the application for this kind of scenario; other operations would probably be more inconvenient if we had.

We do have a script to delete translations selectively, but we'd need to do some thinking and puzzling to see if we can make it do what we want, for which we don't have manpower at the moment.

So in a nutshell, we're probably stuck on this one. I'm sorry.

David Planella (dpm) said : #2

Hi Richard,

What you're describing is the usual Launchpad fallback: if it can't identify the translator, it falls back to crediting the uploader, so that at least translations can be tracked back to him/her. However, the credit done for translations in Launchpad is never lost, so if anyone did translations using the web interface, they will be correctly credited.

I'll leave it up to Launchpad admins to see if it's possible to fix the credits for your upload. However, looking at the translation details, I see that the credits are already correct, at least for the Catalan language:

I.e. I can only see translator names credited, and your name does not appear to be there.

In the future, rather than doing manual uploads, I'd recommend using automatic bzr imports and exports. Looking at, it seems you're already using them.

The only thing I'd suggest is to change the imports setting to "Import template files" instead of "Import template and translation files". The latter is generally used for new projects which need to have a one-off import of their PO files into Launchpad.

Jeroen, if it's easy enough to selectively delete the Portuguese and Maori translations (pt and mi), it'd be great if you could do that for me. In both cases I'm the only contributor, and I'll temporarily remove the translation teams to avoid any strings from being translated in the meantime (we have "restricted permissions" on the project).

If that can't be done without affecting the other languages too, then I agree, we're stuck.

David, yes, Catalan and most of the other languages are fine. I think it's only really Portuguese and Maori where I seriously messed up with the entire translation.

We're actually making use of the "Import template and translation files" setting in our unstable branch because we recently had a ton of upstream English strings change in a way that's not meaningful for translators (typos, spelling, capitalisation), so we're now automatically pushing meaningless msgid changes to all existing translations to make life easier for the translators.

Laura Czajkowski (czajkowski) said : #4

Richard at present we do not have the man power available to do the work needed. This may change at a later stage but for now, we can't do anything.

I know the feeling! Oh well, it was worth a try.

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