Translate into Filipino

Are you confused? Translate into Filipino or into Tagalog? Which is which? In fact, when you say Filipino, you might as well include all the other major languages in the Philippines - example - Cebuano, Ilocano, Ilonggo, Waray, Kapampangan, Bicolano etc.

An exaggeration is to say that the number of Filipino languages is as many as the number of Philippine islands, which is about 7,107 (Wikipedia) depending on whether it is high tide or low tide. But this only means that Tagalog is just one of the many languages in the Philippines. When you order a translation into Filipino however, all translators will interpret this as an order to translate into Tagalog. Depending on where the translator lives, their Filipino can also mean Manila Tagalog, Bulacan Tagalog, Nueva Ecija Tagalog, Batangas Tagalog or Mindoro/Palawan Tagalog. Needless to say, everybody will incorporate words and expressions from other major languages (including languages from other countries) but the sound and the idiom will largely be in Tagalog.

More confused? Here are some pointers.

Filipino incorporates more borrowed words. It is less purist, that is, any pure Tagalog can be compromised in favor of the more popularly used expression, and this is okay, as long as there is a certain amount of consistency.

Filipino employs any word, English, Spanish, Cebuano, Chinese etc that has already gained pertinent recall in mainstream conversation, that is, those that are used on the streets, as opposed to those that are used in the Academe.

Filipino tolerates more elliptical expressions as long as these carry the tones already familiar with the crowd, that is, the people perceived to be the ultimate target audience.

Filipino is flexible, and can bend as far as using tag-lish (switch coding Tagalog to English) versus using a Tagalog paraphrase or interpretation in case of non-exact equivalents. This is not a product of a consideration of length but nevertheless a decision that will favor a shorter translation.

Filipino is more gloss translation in many cases but this is debatable.

Translate a technical text into Filipino and, when it borrows the technical words and expressions, it leans more towards "Filipino" but the literalness of correspondence still demands more Tagalog.

It is safe to say that to translate into Filipino, is still to translate into Tagalog. But the translator will not be averse to calling his translation as either Tagalog or Filipino. For the translator, there is yet no clear difference. But depending on whether it is going to be formal or informal as dictated by the target audience to translate into Filipino will have adjustments toward either a more Filipino or a more Tagalog bent.